“The Dalton Gang,” good guys turned bad who went from being U.S. marshals to robbing banks and trains. Their banditry ended in 1892 in Coffeyville, Kan., where four gang members were killed during an attempt to rob two banks in one day.
Profiling "Wild Bill" Hickok (1837-76), an Army scout who went on to become a Kansas lawman known for his quick trigger. Hickok was also a gambler and was shot to death while playing cards (the hand he was holding when he died, pairs of aces and eights, became known as the "dead man's hand").
The rise of Chicago, "The Gateway to the West." Included is a look at how the city recovered from the fire of 1871. Also: the labor struggles that led to a wave of strikes, including the Haymarket Riot of 1886; and a segment on the Columbian Exposition.
“Steamboats West: Glory Days on the Big Muddy” examines how the introduction of steamboats on the Missouri River spurred settlement. Also: the steamboat's role in the aftermath of the Battle of the Little Bighorn in 1876.
An examination of how journalists chronicled---and sensationalized---the Old West focuses on coverage of Indian wars. Also: dime novels that embellished the exploits of Belle Starr, Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane (Martha Jane Canary).
Profiling U.S. Army Indian fighter Gen. George Crook (1829-90), called "Gray Fox" by Native Americans. After a distinguished Civil War record, Crook battled the Apaches and the Sioux in the 1870s and '80s.