Calamity Jane

Calamity Jane

The Woman and the Legend

Book - 2005
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Forget Doris Day singing on the stagecoach. Forget Robin Weigert's gritty portrayal on HBO's Deadwood . The real Calamity Jane was someone the likes of whom you've never encountered. That is, until now.

This book is a definitive biography of Martha Canary, the woman popularly known as Calamity Jane. Written by one of today's foremost authorities on this notorious character, it is a meticulously researched account of how an alcoholic prostitute was transformed into a Wild West heroine.

Always on the move across the northern plains, Martha was more camp follower than the scout of legend. A mother of two, she often found employment as waitress, laundress, or dance hall girl and was more likely to be wearing a dress than buckskin. But she was hard to ignore when she'd had a few drinks, and she exploited the aura of fame that dime novels created around her, even selling her autobiography and photos to tourists.

Gun toting, swearing, hard drinking--Calamity Jane was all of these, to be sure. But whatever her flaws or foibles, James D. McLaird paints a compelling portrait of an unconventional woman who more than once turned the tables on those who sought to condemn or patronize her. He also includes dozens of photos--many never before seen--depicting Jane in her many guises. His book is a long-awaited biography of Martha Canary and the last word on Calamity Jane.

Publisher: Norman : University of Oklahoma Press, c2005
ISBN: 9780806135915
0806135913
Characteristics: xiii, 378 p. : ill., maps ; 26 cm

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LadyDi52
Apr 09, 2016

I appreciate the extensive research the author has done on this heroine's life, but he repeats himself often, and is so distracted by minute details, it's like listening to a drunk telling a joke and wondering if he'll ever get to the punch line.

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