Wyatt Earp Really Did Drag Johnny Tyler Out of the Oriental Saloon This scene from Tombstone was dead-on with history.

johnny tyler true west tombstone
A still from the movie Tombstone.

Remember a scene in Tombstone where Wyatt Earp leads gambler Johnny Tyler out of the Oriental and into the street?  Something like that really happened.

Tyler was head of a gambling group called The Slopers.  In mid-February 1881, he pulled a gun on a dealer at the Oriental, trying to take over the game.  That was when Earp disarmed Tyler, grabbed him by the ear and threw him out—while Doc Holliday kept Tyler’s friends at bay with a pistol.  Tyler left town a couple of months later as the Earp faction controlled gambling in Tombstone.

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Mark Boardman

Mark Boardman is the features editor for True West Magazine as well as the editor of The Tombstone Epitaph. He also serves as pastor for Poplar Grove United Methodist Church in Indiana.