i don't like fun

dead man’s hand
18 May, 2010, 10:48 pm
Filed under: americana, deadwood, history, tv

above is wild bill hickok’s original grave in (near?) deadwood, south dakota. i first learned of him from watching the show deadwood – they did a really accurate job portraying his original burial place. i can’t read it all, but it’s clear that the tombstone mentions both his killer, jack mccall, and “colorado” charlie utter, his good friend.

when hickok was shot during a poker game, he was holding four black cards- a pair of aces and a pair of 8’s. there’s some dispute over what the fifth card was or if he even had a fifth card at the moment. the phrase “dead man’s hand” had existed previously, but afterwards it came to describe the hand that wild bill last held.