Cowboys wore their long johns seven days a week unless they took them off to take a bath in a river or a tub.
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What did cowboys wear as underwear? 

Ethan Cooperrider Coulee City, Washington

Long johns were first introduced into England in the 17th century, but they did not become popular as sleepwear and underwear until the 18th century. They were named long johns in the 19th century after American boxing champion John L. Sullivan wore them in the ring. Cowboys were among those who wore them. Long johns helped them deal with the cold winters; as for the summer heat, folks just endured.

Arizona’s Yuma Territorial Prison was established in the early 1870s. Where were convicted felons incarcerated before then?

Colin Ferrill Silverhill, Alabama

According to the Arizona Territorial Prison Museum at Yuma, criminals were confined at the various local jails around the territory.

I didn’t watch much television while growing up. So now that I am retired, I have discovered there are quite a few Westerns on the telly. Some channels are devoted to only Westerns. I know many were filmed in California and used fire trails, dirt roads, etc. What did the Old West roads actually look like?  

Greg Williams Apache Junction, Arizona

The Western film industry began in 1913 when Jesse Lasky and Cecil B. DeMille packed up their movie studio and moved from New York to California. The popularity of the first motion picture with a story, 1903’s The Great Train Robbery, filmed in the wilds of New Jersey, inspired them to go West. There they took advantage of lots of land and good weather. The filmmakers generally used dirt roads that were already in place, but some were rutted. Sometimes, they’d create new ones to take advantage of the natural surroundings. 

Most Old West roads were just dirt roads, not much wider than one way (which sometimes made things a bit awkward), and dusty in dry times and mudholes in the wet ones. Many were later improved and paved for the modern country roads. 


“Dirty” Dave Rudabaugh was a notorious leader of the Dodge City Gang in 1879-80. There are no confirmed photos of Rudabaugh, and this one is disputed.
True West Archives


What was the Dodge City Gang? 

Hugo Waverley Kansas City, Kansas

The real Dodge City Gang was a bunch of hard cases including “Dirty” Dave Rudabaugh, “Mysterious” Dave Mather and leader Hyman Neil, better known as Hoodoo Brown. All had spent time in Dodge before they headed for lawless Las Vegas, New Mexico. During 1879-80, they attempted to dominate the political and economic life there. Hoodoo and the gang murdered, stole and robbed trains and stages. Other than that, they were upstanding members of society.

Finally, the citizens tired of their shenanigans and with the help of vigilantes started tossing them in jail. The gang’s demise after a few months was caused mostly by greed and open defiance of the law. 

What was the world’s longest poker game?

“Second Chance Charlie” Tucson, Arizona

Tombstone’s Bird Cage Theater boasts the world’s longest poker game, which was played in the building’s basement. To play, gamblers had to pay $1,000 up front. The poker game was played continuously for 24 hours a day, seven days a week from 1881 until 1889, a total of eight years. It is estimated that $10 million changed hands during the game; the Bird Cage retained 10 percent of that money. Among the notable people who played in this particular game at one time or another were Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday, Bat Masterson, George Hearst, Adolphus Busch and Diamond Jim Brady. 

However, according to Ripley’s Believe It or Not, the Dunglen Hotel in the coal mining town of Thurmond, West Virginia, has a claim for the longest game of poker ever played. This card game started in 1910 and is said to have lasted 14 years. The Dunglen was torched by arsonists in 1930; Thurmond is basically a ghost town.

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