Before it was the land of the rich and famous, California was the land of opportunity for a different reason: the California Gold Rush of 1849, which drew settlers to the frontier. Dubbed the Wild West because of its seemingly lawless nature, the western frontier was the new and unexplored, a place where people could go to start anew. But was it really as unruly as it’s depicted in Old Westerns? Did cowboys freely roam about partaking in duels to settle disagreements? Who was Stagecoach Mary? These are the stories that attempt to answer those questions.
Explore a unique slice of Americana.
From gunslingers to highwaymen.
The hunt for riches brought 300,000 settlers to the territory.
The first African American female postal worker was renowned for more than her groundbreaking status.
The conquering of the West made ripe grounds for unbelievable moments.
By Orrin Grey
This short-lived service has maintained a large presence in our historical imagination.
Bass Reeves was the first black deputy marshal west of the Mississippi–and one of the most beloved.
Think you know everything about the famous gunfight? Think again.
John Franklin Cogburn’s great-grandson recounts the life of the man who inspired True Grit's "Rooster."