Whispering Smith

Created by Frank H. Spearman (1859-1950) Cowboy and railroad detective GORDON "WHISPERING" SMITH first showed in in a 1906 novel by celebrated Western author Frank H. Spearman. Supposedly, Smith was modeled on real-life Union Pacific Railroad detectives Timothy Keliher and Joe Lefors (though his name was taken from another UPRR policeman, James L. "Whispering" Smith. … Continue reading Whispering Smith

Mama, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Cowboys

Contemporary Cowboy Eyes Sometimes an eye's just gotta do what an eye's gotta do... Dan Roman by Edward Mathis Rafferty by W. Glenn Duncan Cody by James M. Reasoner RELATED LINKS My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys Cowboy Eyes The Dangers of Dime Westerns From Mark Twain's "bloodthirstily interesting" favorites to first-person shooters, Westerns were the first … Continue reading Mama, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Cowboys

Lucas Hallam

Created by L.J. Washburn (1957 --) Shucks. LUCAS HALLAM is an ex-Texas Ranger and honest-to-god cowboy trying to make a living as a stuntman in the Hollywood of the 1920's. But times are tough and business practices can get a mite rough in the fledgling movie industry, so ol' Luke ends up tossing his Stetson … Continue reading Lucas Hallam

Fred J. Dodge

(1854-1938) Born in Butte County in California in 1854, FRED J. DODGE grew up in Sacramento, and became a detective for Wells Fargo, working for them for over fifty years, much of it undercover, in California, Nevada, Arizona, Texas, Kansas and Oklahoma. There's no doubt Dodge got around. While working in Tombstone, Arizona in 1879, … Continue reading Fred J. Dodge

Old Red & Big Red Amlingmeyer

Created by Steve Hockensmith “So how is it,” I hear you ask, “that a couple no-account saddle bums like you and your brother came to be so fired-up excited about detectifying like a proper English gentleman detective?” To which I say, “Who’s a no-account saddle bum?” -- Otto puts a little spit in the pan. … Continue reading Old Red & Big Red Amlingmeyer

Jim Hardie

Created by James Brooks, Frank Gruber and Gene Reynolds JIM HARDIE was the tall, good-looking hombre who starred in (and narrated) Tales of Wells Fargo (1957-62, NBC), arguably the second-most successful hybrid of the private eye and western genres in the early days of American television. Have Gun, Will Travel also lasted an impressive six seasons, while Shotgun Slade … Continue reading Jim Hardie

My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys

Cowboy Eyes The case of the cowboy as P.I. isn't that far-fetched, actually. Scratch Shane, and the Continental Op peeks out... Heck, my earliest heroes were all cowboys. I had my plastic six guns, a red felt cowboy hat and a chip on my shoulder, and anyone who asked my name would be told -- … Continue reading My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys

Shotgun Slade

Created by Frank Gruber (1904-69) The two hottest genres in the early days of television drama were the Western and the private eye drama, and within a few years, four different shows attempted to combine the two. But unlike Have Gun Will Travel, The Man from Blackhawk or Tales from Wells Fargo, TV's SHOTGUN SLADE was perhaps … Continue reading Shotgun Slade