Protecting the Clean Shirts

Jim Moon

Jim Moon faced down a mob at a Chinese laundry.

On October 31, 1880, drunken mobs went after Chinese in Denver. Most of Chinatown was destroyed—but not all. Jim Moon was a saloon owner and sporting man—and he had a reputation as deadly with a gun. Moon positioned himself in the door of a Chinese laundry and proclaimed that the establishment cleaned his shirts and did a very good job of it (the wording was more colorful than that). “Anybody who tries to get ‘em will have to do it over my dead body.” The crowd left the laundry alone—and Moon was lauded for his courage.

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