We're excited this year to begin a rebranding of the Symposium under "The Real West" and expanding the scope of our dive into history.  This year we look closer at the "Gunslingers and Outlaws" their reputations, their guns, and what they were and were not, along with how they shaped the "law of the land" during the 1800's.    

In 2017, The Real Chisholm Trail Symposium set the record straight on the real route the great south Texas Cattle herds used to travel through North Texas on their way to the Kansas Cowtown’s and Rail heads.  The 2018 Symposium examined the real men and women that rode the trail and drove the cattle north to the rail yards. We separated fact from lore and fiction regarding their dress, lifestyle, and duties on the trail culminating in their transformation from drover to the iconic Cowboy we know today. This year we take a look at the infamous gunslingers and outlaws. You will hear the real stories about some of the most famous gunfights in history as well as Texas Feuds, vigilantes and killers. We will also address the gunslinger cowboy misconception and hear about one of the last gunfights in Fort Worth.    


This year’s exceptional group of speakers will separate fact from fiction about the gunfights, the outlaws, and the gunslingers of the wild west. Our panel this year includes:

​Marshall Trimble, Arizona's official historian and the Wild West History Association’s vice president, who will set the record straight on the “Gunfight at the OK Corral.”

Dawn Youngblood, Tarrant County’s Director of Historic Preservation and Archives in Fort Worth, will give the actual details of the gunfight between Luke Short and Long-haired Jim Courtright outside Fort Worth’s White Elephant Saloon in 1887.

Michael Grauer, the McCasland Chair of Cowboy Culture/Curator of Cowboy Collections and Western Art at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City will help us define “What Cowboys were NOT.”

Sue Carter, a direct descendant of South Texas Cattle Baron William Green Butler will tell the true story of the “Daileyville Fracas” a Karnes County, Texas feud between the Butlers and Elders that turned deadly in 1886.

Along with the speakers there will be fire arms exhibits by Jackson Firearms, an authentic 1880’s chuck wagon cooking up coffee on the plaza, a historically accurate reenactment of the Gun Fight at the OK Corral, and as always a chance to visit a real cattle trail saloon “The Museum of the Stonewall Saloon”.  This event is a must for anyone interested in The Real West and not the Hollywood version of history. So, hold onto your seat, or better yet, reserve your seat now for this year's trip back in history to learn more about these notorious gunslingers and outlaws of the West. 

This year’s Symposium will be held in the newly renovated Texas Theater on the Chisholm Trail Square in Saint Jo.  Seating is limited. The Theater was in its early stages of renovation last year, but it is now open and provides current, classic and live theater in Saint Jo for the first time in 63 years.  

We couldn't do this without our sponsors!!  ​
Special Thanks to:
Chism Brown Ranch, Clint & De Brown
Coppell Construction
First State Bank
Jackson & Cooksey, Cooksey Collier Ranch, James Cooksey
JPM Ranch Company,Jack & Patsy Martin
The Montgomery Family
The First Texas Building, Lonnie & Dottie Morrison

Want to know more about the 2017 & 2018 Symposiums?  Click here

© 2021

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