Wyatt Earp's sketch of the gunfight at the OK Corral
Wyatt Earp's sketch of the gunfight at the OK Corral sold at auction in 2010 for $380,000.

The fight

The 1881 gunfight saw US frontier lawman Wyatt Earp, his two brothers and Doc Holliday take on the Clanton and McLaury brothers and Billy the Kid Claiborne in Tombstone, Arizona Territory. The cowboys suffered three dead in the fight. Three of Earp’s men received wounds.1

The sketch

Wyatt Earp's sketch of the gunfight at the OK Corral
Wyatt Earp's sketch of the gunfight at the OK Corral
earp

The pencil sketch on a 4to. sheet was made on September 15th 1926 during an interview with Earp’s personal secretary John Flood.

Flood undertook the majority of the drawing under direction from Earp, with Earp occasionally dot-annotating.

Beneath the diagram Flood wrote: "Diagram of Street Fight Dots, representing the fighters in the diagram made by Mr. Earp. Diagram by J.H.F., Jr. at 4000 1/2 West Seventeenth St. Los Angeles, California…September 15, 1926 11:30 AM - 5:30 PM".2

On the reverse are a number of notes made by Flood during his six-hour interview with Earp.

The drawing indicates the locations of all the shooters, as well as the movements of Earp and his brother Morgan during the fight. Several witnesses are also depicted. Ike Clanton, who fled the fight, shouting: "I am not armed!" is not shown.

Ownership

Before his death in 1929, Earp gave many of his possessions to Flood. Flood bequeathed most of his Earp material to collector John Gilchriese, with whom it remained following Flood’s death in 1958 until the 2010 sale.

Sale

The sketch made $380,000 at an Alexander Autographs action in October 2010, far exceeding the estimated $75,000 - $100,000.

See also

Main article: List of notable militaria

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