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Inside The Life Of Calamity Jane: The Wild West’s Most Notorious Frontierswoman
Martha Jane Canary or Cannary May 1, — August 1, , better known as Calamity Jane , was an American frontierswoman and professional scout known for being an acquaintance of Wild Bill Hickok 's. She is said to have exhibited compassion to others, especially to the sick and needy. This facet of her character contrasted with her daredevil ways and helped to make her a noted frontier figure. She did not have a formal education and suffered from alcoholism. Much of the information about the early years of Calamity Jane's life comes from the autobiographical booklet which she dictated in , written for publicity purposes. She was about to begin a tour in which she appeared in dime museums around the United States, and it was intended to help attract audiences.
I've always thought Calamity Jane's life sad. As you said, Sarah, the truth is probably somewhere in her tall tales. That is one fascinating story, Sarah! Thanks for sharing it. I watched the HBO series Deadwood, and that is how they portrayed their relationship, as an infatuation on Jane's part. Best of luck with your new book, sounds good! Sometimes it's hard to remember that famous people on TV and in the movies were actually real ones, and not just fiction.
The life of Calamity Jane may be more fiction than fact, but it's enthralling either way.
In the hyper-masculine world of the Wild West, Calamity Jane held her own. Born Martha Jane Canary, she could shoot, ride, and drink with the toughest cowboys of the day. From the mix of tall tales and exaggerations that make up the life of Calamity Jane, facts are like the nuggets of gold in the west — rare. She herself published an autobiography in that most historians peg as trumped-up fiction, and most accounts of her life weave together legend and truth. It was nine years before the outbreak of the Civil War. Her father, Robert, was a farmer.
Please call South Dakota Magazine at to place your order by phone or if you have any further questions. We apologize for the inconvenience. But of course we know better. He proved the two knew each other for only a brief period in Deadwood, and were certainly nothing more than casual acquaintances. The silent film was the first movie to link the two romantically.