Sunday, January 22, 2017

Western Madam & Earp Wife Bessie Earp 1887 Pioneer Cemetery

Nellie Bartlett "Bessie" Catchim (Ketchum?) Earp (1840 - January 22, 1887) was married to James Cooksey Earp, an older brother of legendary lawman Wyatt Earp. Bessie and James married in Illinois on April 18th, 1873. James called Bessie "the Beautiful Brunette." 


She had two children, Frank and Hattie, by a previous marriage. Bessie and James traveled to Witchita, Kansas where she managed a brothel. They moved to Tombstone, Arizona with the rest of the Earp clan, but neither were present at the "OK Corral Gunfight" on October 26, 1881. After the murder of Morgan Earp and the severe wounding of Virgil, Bessie and James joined the Earp clan in their move to Colton, California in San Bernardino County. She remained there until her death on January 22, 1887. 

Bessie Earp is buried at the Pioneer Memorial Cemetery in San Bernardino next to Earp matriarch, Virginia Cooksey Earp.

1 comment:

  1. Your photos above, which purport to show James and Bessie Earp, are fakes. John Boessenecker