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Early Settlers in Walla Walla

"Thomas H. Currie: Saloonkeeper, Fornicator, and Gambling Den Keeper"

by Shaun Reeser


Clearly, the Frontier Justice Records are not limited to upstanding citizens; indeed, they usually deal with less than savory characters.

One such individual was Thomas H. Currie, a saloonkeeper. Currie, whose profession does not necessarily imply a lowly disposition, appears in the Frontier Justice Records four times in 1867. Although a businessperson was likely to be seen before a judge for a collection of an account (see the Frontier Economy section), Currie appeared for Keeping a House of Gambling, Maintaining a Gambling Table, Sale of Liquor to Indians, and Fornication. Clearly, this was an individual who would not be considered a prominent member of the community.

Although Currie only appears in the records four times, there is at least one other instance that he appeared before a judge. On October 11, 1867, the Walla Walla Statesman reported that Currie was in court before Judge Lacy the previous day for assaulting and beating John Mansfield. This brief story can be found in the documents section and the above mentioned cases are linked to the Frontier Justice file numbers WAL-78, -79, -128, and -262.