In the opening scene of The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, the title character says, “Stand and deliver!“ That phrase seems appropriate for the previous century, not an 1800s stagecoach robber. What do you think?
I’m a big fan of John Wayne, Lee Marvin, James Stewart, John Ford and the 1962 film itself. It’s a great story by Dorothy Johnson. It’s too bad the movie was not filmed in color and at a more appropriate location.
It wouldn’t be unusual for a road agent to say something like that. Outlaws displayed all kinds of personalities, not to mention intelligence levels. An outlaw like Liberty might have wanted his own calling card, and an archaic phrase like “stand and deliver” worked well for him.
Marshall Trimble is Arizona’s official historian. His latest book is Wyatt Earp: Showdown at Tombstone. If you have a question, write: Ask the Marshall, P.O. Box 8008, Cave Creek, AZ 85327 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org