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Location: Sitting inside a TV truck, Somewhere, more then likely in the Southeastern region, United States

I am a grouchy, bald headed old fart filled with opinions and not the least bit shy about sharing them.

Friday, September 03, 2010

World's First Female Pistol Duel

Back in 1877 Denver was the site of the recorded first gun duel fought between women. Madames Mattie Silks and Katie Fulton fought a duel with single shot Derringers over a married man they both laid claim to. Neither was his wife. Both followed the general guidelines, paced off their steps, turned and fired. Neither Madame took a hit.

However, Cort Thomson, the man at the center of the dispute was hit. Some versions of the story say that immediately after the smoke cleared the ladies engaged in the mother of all cat fights. Silks won the cat fight. A bloodied and bruised Fulton left on the next stage never to be heard from again.

Silks continued running her business and went on to become the most successful Madame in Denver. Eventually Thomson and Silks married. They had to wait for Thomson's wife to die as she wouldn't give him a divorce. Silks went on to purchase The House of Mirrors at 1942 Market Street.

Mattie Silks lived to be 83, passing away in 1929 at Denver General Hospital. She died from the complications of a broken hip. Her House of Mirrors establishment exists to this day as a bar with a museum to the world's oldest profession upstairs.

This moment of home town heritage was brought to you by Wild West Tech on the History Channel.

Denver History - Mattie Silks
The Jailery - Mattie Silks of Colorado Queen of the Red Light District


Prostitution, although hounded, imprisoned, and chained, is nevertheless the greatest triumph of Puritanism.
- Emma Goldman

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