Photograph of Tom Horn


8 1/2" x 6 1/2", mount size 10" x 8". Unidentified photographer (known to be W.G. Walker). Affixed to verso are newspaper clippings describing Horn’s hanging.

Circa 1903 image of Tom Horn in jail office in Cheyenne awaiting his hanging. He holds a horsehair reata that he has been weaving in jail.

Lot 210, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $20,060.

N. Chas Castillo Silver Show Saddle


An impressive sterling silver mounted show piece with black floral tooled leather. Circular cartouche on seat, "N. CHAS CASTILLO / SADDLEMAKER / LOS ANGELES - CALIF." 14 ½” seat with 3 ½’ cantle completely covered in engraved silver. Corners decorated with 3” to 4 ¼” domed conchos. 20” tapaderos. Matching martingale with graduated silver domes, matching bridle with replaced 3-piece face plate. Crockett S-shank bit with engraved sterling overlay. Black and white corona. Includes stand.

Lot 501, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $5,900.

Sunday Supplement to the Daily Gazette Regarding Jesse James’ Death


Rare complete, four-page supplement to the “The Daily Gazette” / St. Joseph, Mo, Sunday, April 9, 1882. The entire issue is dedicated to Jesse James, his life, career, death, funeral and legacy. Filled with interesting material, quotes, anecdotes and the like.

Measuring 14 ½” x 20 ½” and cased in a custom portfolio.

From the Robert G. McCubbin Collection.

Lot 637, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $20,060.

Important Buck Morton Letter Regarding the Killing of Tunstall, and Morton’s Imminent Fate at the Hands of the Regulators, along with CDV


a) CDV of William Morton. 3 1/2" x 2 1/4", mount size 4" x 2 1/2". N. BROWN & SON photographer’s imprint on verso. Buck Morton was a Dolan employee and posse member.

b) Letter. Four, single-sided pages, handwritten in ink, from William S. (“Buck”) Morton to his distant relative, attorney Hunter Holmes Marshall in Richmond, Virginia. Dated March 8, 1878. 11 ½” x 8 ¾”.

Included is a circa, 1927 envelope from when Elizabeth Garrett sent the letter on loan to Maurice Fulton, the Roswell historian.

Provenance: From Jarvis Garrett to Robert McCubbin.

Robert McCubbin: “This came to me from Jarvis Garrett. It was something that he would not part with until the very end, when his wife was concerned about his health… Obviously, one of my favorite things in the collection.”

One of the most important epistolary artifacts from the commencement of the Lincoln County War. Buck Morton, involved with the posse who shot Tunstall and subsequently accused of Tunstall’s murder, is captured by the Regulators and is being held captive on Chisum’s Ranch. Morton writes about Tunstall’s shooting, and about his own surrender to the Regulators, whom he lists by name. He writes that he has been told he is being taken to Lincoln, but also that he doubts he will see Lincoln alive. He keeps hoping he might make it, but it seems clear that he knew that he would not.

The complete letter reads as follows:

“H.H. Marshall esq

Richmond, Va.

South Spring River N.M.

Mch. 8 1878

Dr Sir

Some time since I was called upon to assist in serving a writ of attachment on some property wherein resistance has been made against the law.

The parties had started off with some horses which should be attached, and I as deputy sheriff with a posse of twelve men was sent in pursuit of same. We overtook them and while attempting to serve the writ our party was fired on by one J.H. Tunstall the balance of his party having run off. The fire was returned and Tunstall was killed. This happened on the 18th of February. The 6th of March I was arrested by a Constable party accused of the murder of Tunstall. Nearly all of the sheriff’s posse fired at him and it is impossible for any one to say who killed him. When the posse which came to arrest me and one man who was with me, first saw us, about one hundred yards distant we started in another direction, when they (eleven in number) fired nearly one hundred shots at us. We ran about five miles, when both of our horses fell and we made a stand when they came up they told us if we would give up they would not harm us. After talking awhile we gave up our arms and were made prisoners. There was one man in the party who wanted to kill me after I had surrendered, and was restrained with the greatest difficulty by others of the party. The Constable himself said he was sorry we gave up as he had not wished to take us alive. We arrived here last night en route to Lincoln. I have heard that we were not to be taken alive to that place. I am not at all afraid of their killing me but if they should do so I wish that the matter should be investigated and the parties dealt with according to law. If you do not hear from me in four days after receipt of this I would like you to make inquiries about the affair.

The names of the parties who have me arrested are R.M. Brewer, J.G. Skirlock [sic], Chas. Bowdre, Wm Bonney, Henry Brown, Frank McNab, “Wayt” Sam Smith, Jim French (and two others named McCloskey & Middleton who are friends). There are two parties in arms and violence expected. The military are at the scene of disorder and trying to keep peace. I will arrive at Lincoln the night of the 10th and will write you immediately, if I get through safe. Have been in the employ of Jas. J. Dolan & Co, of Lincoln for 18 mo’s since 9th Mch, 77. Have been getting $60.00 per month have about six hundred dollars due me from them and some horses &c at their cattle camps. I hope if it becomes necessary that you will look into this affair. If anything should happen I refer you to T.B. Catron US Attorney Santa Fe N.M. and Col. Rynerson Dist. Atty. La Messilla N.M. They both know all about the affair as the writ of attachment was issued by Judge Warren Briscol La Messilla N.M. and everything was legal. If I am taken safely to Lincoln, I will have no trouble but let you know.

If it should be as I suspect, please communicate with my brother Quin Morton Lewisburg W.Va. Hoping that you will attend to this affair if it becomes necessary and forgive me for troubling you if it does not.

I remain Yours Respectfully / W. S. Morton"

Lot 730, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $5,900.

Colt Single Action Engraved by David Wade Harris


Colt Single Action Engraved by David Wade Harris

*S/N 216396, .45 caliber, 7 ½” barrel, 1st generation Colt Single Action. Gold washed and stunningly engraved by David Wade Harris with Native American symbolism, including thunderbirds, clouds, lodges, Zias, animals, arrows and much more. Engraved, “COLT’S PT. F. A. MFG. CO. HARTFORD CT. U.S.A.” on underside of barrel; signed “DW HARRIS” with a flourish on the butt. Tight scrolling, all matching numbers. Carved ivory grips with Indian chief head on one side. Circa 1901. Condition: bore id very good, 99% gold finish, mechanically excellent, excellent marks and engraving.

David Wade Harris, Tyler, Texas, has been plying his trade for almost 30 years. He learned the trade from Weldon Bledsoe who worked with Cole Agee. Best known for his cattle brand motifs on firearms.

Lot 511, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25th & 26th, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $12,980.

Rare Photographs of Calamity Jane


Cabinet Card of Calamity Jane. 5 1/2" x 3 3/4", mount size 6 1/2" x 4 1/4". R. L. Kelly PIERRE, S. DAX. photographer's imprint on front of card. Written in pencil on verso, “Calamity Jane taken by R.L. Kelly Pierre SD / This is a genuine and rare picture of Calamity Jane.” And then in ink below, “Emory Cantey, Jr. Collection”. Circa 1901.

Lot 75, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $3,835.


Photograph of Calamity Jane. 9 1/2" x 7 7/16", mount size 10 3/4" x 7 7/8". Printed on strip on image, “Calamity Jane, [struck out] / Copyright by H.R. Locke, 1895.” Written (printed) on front of card, “ “Calamity Jane”.“ Stamped on verso, “This Photograph from Historical Collection on E.A. BRININSTOOL Los Angeles, Cal.”

Robert McCubbin: "The largest such photo I have seen."

Lot 78, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $11,800.


Rare Cabinet Card of Calamity Jane. 6" x 3 7/8", mount size 6 1/2" x 4 1/4". Unidentified photographer, but same clothing as Locke photo. Perhaps the only copy in existence.

Robert McCubbin: “This is the only cabinet card of this that I have seen, and I have never seen this photo published.”

Lot 79, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $2,655.


Cabinet Card of Calamity Jane. 5 7/16" x 3 3/8", mount size 6 1/2" x 4 1/4". Printed on plate beneath image, “Calamity Jane, Gen. Crook’s Scout. Copyrighted by H.R. Locke, 1895.”

Lot 80, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $2,360.


Rare Cabinet Card of Calamity Jane. 5 3/8" x 3 7/8", mount size 6 3/8" x 4 3/16". Printed at bottom of image, “MRS. BURKE: CALAMITY JANE.”

Robert McCubbin: “This is the only known original of the only known “portrait” of Calamity.”

Lot 81, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $1,888.

Wonderful D.E. Walker - Visalia Parade Saddle


Sterling Silver and gold decorated, rich brown saddle, with flower tooling and fixed corona. This elegant saddle has 24” tapaderos and matching martingale and bridle with a Visalia show bit. There are 240 pieces of sterling silver, including the full cantle cover and swells, plus 16 gold horseheads. An amazing example from the noted maker. Complete with a set of matching tooled stirrups. Includes stand.

Lot 502, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Estimate $29,500.

Wild Bill Hickok's Straight Razor


A John Pearce, bone handled straight razor with silver dot inlays, with case. From James Butler Hickok's Deadwood, North Dakota estate and descended through his family.

Provenance: Accompanied by a signed and notarized document that reads as follows:

“This silver inlaid, bone handled straight razor with its accompanying black case belong to James Butler (Wild Bill) Hickok and was retrieved following his death in Deadwood, South Dakota in Aug. 1876, by his brother Lorenzo Butler Hickok. The razor was subsequently given to Wild Bill’s older brother Horace Dewey Hickok who resided in the Hickok home town of Homer, Illinois (presently Troy Grove, Illinois). The razor then passed to Horace’s daughter Ethel, and later to myself, Edith Andrews Harmon, Ethel’s niece and executor of her estate. The razor was recently sold to Steve Dancey.”

Signed Edith A. Harmon and notarized.

From the Robert G. McCubbin Collection.

Lot 639, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold 10,030.

Fabulous Frank Coenen Lots


Californio Hat with Frank Coenen Silver Ornamentation. Fabulous 1930s Californio/Bolero style, white fur hat adorned with elegant Frank Coenen heavy- gauge sterling silver floral and vine pattern repousse embellishments inset with rubies.

The hat includes a twisted silver rope chin string, original white satin lining and leather sweatband. The exquisite silver hatband is beautifully sculpted and features a vaquero roping a ruby-eyed bull. A divine blend of sophisticated Spanish styling and Danish silver artistry. Exemplary, 100% original condition.

Lot 575, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $24,780


Important Frank Coenen Parade Spurs. Aesthetically breathtaking and extremely rare Frank Coenen double-mounted, California parade spurs. Cheyenne split heelbands, intricate and impressive 60-point rowels, and fully sterling covered with heavy gauge repousse vine and flower designs inset with real rubies. Spurs affixed to matching Coenen straps secured by 3-piece Phillip Fredholm (Los Angeles) buckle sets. Superb, 100% original condition, circa 1930s. Includes custom display stand.

Lot 577, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $17,700.


Frank Coenen Silver and Gold Figural Bridle and Bit. Artistically adorned, the bridle features bold three-dimensional gold buffalo heads in the center of the nose and brow bands framed by repousse silver leaves, while the silver chain drop supports oval silver panels with raised silver and gold initials/names and fraternal moon and stars with inset diamonds and rubies. The bridle cheeks replicate the style and imagery of the front panels with the addition of a stately, heavy-gauge sterling silver three-dimensional Indian head with bonnet at each brow. Coenen has utilized a variety of decorative silver buckles, spots and latches to integrate the headstall pieces and support the ornamental Visalia Stock Saddle Company humane bit overlaid with matching silver repousse and gold buffalo heads. Last but surely not least, is the leather split reins and romal with its large, elaborate and adjustable silver slide, mounted with dozens of intricate and decorative flat ferrules separated by miniature rings. Excellent condition.

Frank Coenen was definitely not building a range or rodeo bridle 90 years ago when he carefully designed and methodically constructed this very unique, custom show piece.

Lot 578, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $15,340.

Reno Browne's Bohlin Silver Cowgirl Outfit


Wonderful Edward H. Bohlin Cowgirl outfit belonging to cowgirl actress, Reno Browne. Matching two-tone brown leather cowgirl ensemble, complete with vest, riding skirt, hat and gauntlets, with Circle-B monogram in silver on front of vest. Sterling silver mounted with round and diamond conchos and sterling silver spots throughout, including the underside of the hat brim. Plenty of fringe of varying lengths, and no detail spared, as befits both Bohlin and the leading lady. Delicate condition, but very showy and wearable. (Size, pretty small). Includes mannequin and photocopy of magazine article with photos of Reno wearing the outfit.

Provenance: Boyd Magers collection.

Lot 579, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $4,425.

Silver and Piteado Saddle Belonging to Manuel Ávila Comacho


Elaborate and elegant piteado and silver saddle and accessories, owned by the former President of Mexico. On an El Tigre rawhide tree, with high-relief silver work and extensive piteado embroidery of the finest craftsmanship. Leather laced edges, silver conchos and stirrup mountings. Impressive horsehead and horseshoe “crest” in silver on the horn. Matching saddle bags, rifle scabbard, and matching sword scabbard on the other side that is complete with an engraved sword with silver handle and guard. The acid etched blade reads, “Solo que la mar se seque no me bañaré en sus olas” with “Oaxaca” on the other side. Matching bridle with silver horsehead and horseshoe decorations. Complete with ornate fringed saddle pad with floral tooling and lion’s head designs in corner, and a rare and unusual dispatch case. Includes wrought-iron stand.

Manuel Ávila Camacho was president of Mexico from 1940 to 1946.

Verbal history: From the Estate of Manuel Ávila Camacho

Lot 491, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $20,060.

Five Lots: CDVs of Wild Bill Hickok


CDV of Wild Bill Hickok. 3 5/8" x 2 1/4", mounted to 4 1/8" x 2 3/8". Gurney, N.Y. photographer's imprint on front and verso of card. Pencil notation on verso, "Wild Bill".

Lot 331, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $3,245.


CDV of Wild Bill Hickok. 3 5/8" x 2 1/4", mounted to 3 7/8" x 2 3/8". "AME'S Capitol Gallery, TOPEKA, KANSAS" photographer's stamp on verso. Written in pencil on verso: "Wild Bill of Kansas".

Lot 332, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $4,130.


CDV of Wild Bill Hickok. 3 3/4" x 2 1/4", mounted to 4 1/8" x 2 1/2". Jas. H. Leonard, Topeka, Kansas photographer's imprint of verso. Written on plate at bottom of image: "WILD BILL".

Lot 333, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $2,950.

CDV of Wild Bill Hickok. 3 3/4" x 2 1/4", mounted to 4 1/8" x 2 1/2". Sawyer’s New Art Gallery, Cheyenne, Wyoming Ter. Photographer’s imprint on verso. Various notations in ink and pencil on verso.

Robert McCubbin: "It is perhaps the last photograph of Hickok, taken as he traveled to his death in Deadwood, Dakota Territory from Cheyenne.”

Lot 334, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $2,006.


CDV of Wild Bill Hickok. 3 3/4" x 2 1/4", mount size is 4" x 2 3/8". Unidentified photographer. Internal Revenue three cent stamp affixed to verso.

Robert McCubbin: "An early and the BEST photo of Wild Bill. Used for a woodcut engraving for the cover of "Harper's New Monthly Magazine", February, 1867. That image and article made him famous. This CDV was discovered in 1989 in an album of photographs belonging to Richard Bently Owen, who hired Hickok as a scout. It is the only known original.”

Lot 335, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - January 25-26, 2019. Mesa, AZ.
Sold $47,200.

The Lone Ranger's Edward H. Bohlin Saddle Ensemble

216_08 copy.jpg

Legendary Bohlin saddle ensemble belonging to the Lone Ranger. From the estate of producer Jack Wrather, this is the saddle seen in most every television episode and film appearance of the Lone Ranger throughout the 1950s. Most often seen being ridden by Clayton Moore, it was also used by John Hart in his portrayal of the masked man, and most correctly belonged to the character of the Lone Ranger rather than an actor playing him. The saddle, bridle and breast collar set are in the style of Bohlin’s San Gabriel model, with only a few variations. The Bohlin shield plate is engraved “L R” and the rear cantle plate is beautifully inscribed “The Lone Ranger.” The seat is 14 1/2" and the cantle 4 1/2", the tapaderos are 22" long. A production-used, classic Bohlin saddle ensemble seen by millions and immortalized on film and television. 
Pictured: "Saddlemaker to the Stars: The Leather and Silver Art of Edward H. Bohlin," by James Nottage, page 117.  
Exhibited: Autry Museum of the American West. 

Lot 216, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - June 23rd, 2018, Santa Fe, NM.
Sold $153,400

216_03 copy.jpg

Texas Ranger, Clint Peoples' Engraved Revolvers


A fine pair of engraved Smith & Wesson revolvers, police-used by famed Texas Ranger, U. S. Marshal and career lawman, Clint Peoples. In a letter (included) dated September 11, 1973, Peoples writes:
“[t]he oilfield boom days were considerably rough. Murderers, racketeers, gamblers, hijackers, prostitutes, burglars, and all types of criminals moved into this area, which caused many trying times for those of us in law enforcement. I carried these pistols through the Conroe oil field boom days and have since carried these on many occasions in the Ranger Service. These pistols during this very rough era have saved my life on several occasions.”

*S/N 12975, .44 caliber, First Model Hand Ejector or Triple Lock Smith & Wesson revolver. Silver plated and engraved with running buffalo, regal elk and fine scroll-work. Pearl grips with carved steerhead. 
*S/N 32586, .44 caliber, Hand Ejector Model 1926 Smith & Wesson revolver. Silver plated with engraving that matches the other revolver, but with a Texas Ranger seal engraved in place of the customary S&W logo. Plain pearl grips. 
a) Letter addressed to Clint Peoples from Smith & Wesson historian R.G. Jinks; b) Affidavit from Donna Peoples testifying that they are her husband’s revolvers; c) a fascinating one-page letter from Clint Peoples on Texas Rangers letterhead regarding his career and the two revolvers; d) copy of the book "Captain Clint Peoples Texas Ranger: Fifty Years a Lawman," by James M. Day.
* $100 FFL fee will be added to this purchase. All sales of firearms will be in accordance with Federal and State guidelines. All post-1898 firearms are subject to applicable ordinances and laws, and must be purchased in compliance with Federal and State law.

Lot 203, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - June 23rd, 2018, Santa Fe, NM.
Sold $64,900

Original Tin Sign from the Infamous Lincoln Saloon.


This original hand painted outdoor tin sign, complete with side panels and peak, is from the Lincoln Saloon, circa 1881. Directly from the dusty streets of Lincoln, the sign hung outside the Lincoln Saloon, located directly across the street from the Courthouse where Billy the Kid shot and killed Pat Garrett's deputies, James Bel and Robert Ollinger, while escaping from jail. 

Shown in numerous photos taken in the 1880s and over the years, the sign stood sentry over all manner of Wild West escapades. In apparent un-restored condition. Comprised of 7 separate pieces, the “Lincoln Saloon” painted portion measures 25” tall, and 96” long including the side panels; the peak and embossed lower panel, combined with the rest, measure just over 22 feet wide (267”) by 9 feet tall. A well-preserved and historic piece of Old West architecture and history, it is a classic example of, “if this thing could talk…”

Lot 23, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - June 23rd, 2018, Santa Fe, NM.
Sold $12,980

Keyston Bros. Silver Parade Saddle Set


Stunning, custom, engraved and impressively mounted sterling saddle ensemble by Keyston Bros., the great San Francisco maker. A full parade outfit with heavy breast collar, bridle and sterling mounted Crockett bit. All in the posse style design of 5-point stars and gold horse heads. 15 1/2" seat, full covered 4" cantle with rope edge, twisted and braided leather strings and 22" tapaderos. The leather is tooled in a fine flower and acorn pattern. Seat plate engraved "L.H. Strong". Bridle marked 14K. Listed in the 1948 Keyston catalog as Saddle #1, The Diamond "K". 

The saddle was originally custom ordered from Keyston by L.H. Strong of Salt Lake City, who later sold it to Tom Peck, who sold it to the current owner. 

Lot includes a copy of the page from the Keyston catalog, as well as a color copy of the cover of “Utah Horse” where the saddle is pictured being ridden in by the then-Governor of Utah, Scott Matheson. 
Collection of Jim and Jane Carpenter, Colorado.

Lot 181, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - June 23rd, 2018, Santa Fe, NM.
Sold $13,570

Kelly Bros. No. 90 Spurs


A very scarce and desirable early pattern by Kelly Bros., Dalhart, Texas. Eye-catching design, with double crescent shank, mounted on both sides, all original with 1 3/4" swell bands and 1 1/2" strap buttons, both along with the 2 1/2" shanks overlaid with engraved silver. The off side is mounted with engraved rectangle and button cover. The original 20 point, 2 1/2" rowels are plain iron. Shown in the #17 (1921) catalog as style #2, mounted both sides. Noted in the catalog, inside back cover. "The Spurs Shown on This Page are New Designs and are Very Fancy". A notable pair of Texas spurs.

Collection of Jim and Jane Carpenter, Colorado.

Lot 244, Brian Lebel's Old West Auction - June 23rd, 2018, Santa Fe, NM.
Sold $17,700