When in testifying in a court case, when asked to compare the degree of lawlessness in frontier Los Angeles - and Tombstone - Wyatt Earp made it clear LA was the hands down winner.
During the 1850's and 1860's (and to a certain extent as late as the 1890's) there were more shoot outs, lynchings, stage robberies, cattle rustling, train robberies and general mayhem in Los Angeles than in any city in the history of the West - and for a far longer period of time than in any other place in Western history.
So why doesn't anyone know of this part of our history? Well, partly because no one know anything about any of LA's history, partly because we are the only city - or town - in this county without a museum dedicated to its own history (though some of us are working to fix that) and partly because no one has even written any books about that part of our history.
Recently, "Six Gun Sound: The Early History of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department" was written by Sheriff's deputy Sven Crongeyer and published by a small local publisher with no budget for promotion. As a result, this book is NOT stocked by local bookstores and it has never been reviewed by our local papers.
So no one knows about it.
But as of today - you can buy a copy at Downtown's newest book store - Polyester - just off 5th and Spring in the Spring Arts Tower at 211 W. 5th Street. So go to the above link to a story about new book store run by Bill Eisman - which is open on both Saturday AND Sunday as well as Tuesday through Friday - and Eisman's Todd Browning art gallery, both of which are located next to the new Phyllis Stein Gallery. And visit his website at: