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Doc Holliday And Wyatt Earp Before The O.K. Corral

John Harwood in for Tom Ashbook

Imagining the friendship of Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp before the O.K. Corral gunfight cemented them in Wild West lore.

Co-stars Kirk Douglas, left, and Burt Lancaster talk between scenes on the set of the western "Gunfight at the O.K. Corral" in Hollywood, Ca., April 21, 1956. Lancaster plays the role of Wyatt Earp and Douglas portrays Doc Holliday. (AP)

Co-stars Kirk Douglas, left, and Burt Lancaster talk between scenes on the set of the western "Gunfight at the O.K. Corral" in Hollywood, Ca., April 21, 1956. Lancaster plays the role of Wyatt Earp and Douglas portrays Doc Holliday. (AP)

Even today images of the Old West remain etched in the American psyche. Dusty saloons, rolling tumblewood, quick-draw gunslingers like Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp at the OK Corral. But a new novel has added emotion, sensitivity and depth to Hollywood’s celluloid version of Dodge City. What can we learn — and what should we know about the changing West of today?

This hour On Point: we’ll revisit the Old West with the author of Doc. And we’ll explore the New West of the 21st century.

-John Harwood

Guests:

Mary Doria Russell, author of the novel “Doc.”

Mark Lee Gardner, historian and musician of the Old West. His most recent book is “To Hell on a Fast Horse: Billy the Kid, Pat Garrett, and the Epic Chase to Justice in the Old West.”

William Deverell, professor of history at University of Southern California and director of the Huntington-USC Institute on California and the West.

Reading List:

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