Publishers Weekly #1 Best Seller for 1902.
This novel was the grandfather of the Western genre and follows a natural gentleman as he is entangled with
the new Wyoming state's 1890s Johnson County War - the ugly side of the consolidation of The American West.
A cabal of large vested interests and a diffuse collection of small players fight for control of access rights to publicly owned common range land.
Rhetoric and actions escalate and culminated in some nasty lynchings, the use of a gang of hired Texan killers (with the tacit approval of the state Governor),
the murder of a small rancher, the siege of the Texans by a posse of 200, and their eventual rescue by the U.S. sixth cavalry at the orders of the president.