Why don’t we hear more about the Arizona Rangers?

Phill Stricklin

Mesa, Arizona

Their time, 1901-09, was brief compared to the Texas Rangers and a little late to be considered a part of the “Old West” era (1890 is the cutoff point for Turnerian historians). Even so, Arizona was wilder in the early 1900s than many other places were during the heyday of the Wild West. It took men with bark to enforce the law, and the Arizona Rangers were certainly up to it.

Jeff Milton called Harry Wheeler, the last captain of the Rangers, the best man with a gun he ever saw, and Milton saw a lot of good men.

I’m proud to say that I’m an honorary Arizona Ranger. So is Bill O’Neal, who wrote the excellent history The Arizona Rangers.

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