Straddle up, we’re in for a bumpy ride through the wild west – one of the most exciting times to be alive in all of history. It was a time of unbridled possibility, with all kinds of opportunities presenting themselves.
Many a journeyman moved to the new American frontier seeking a better life, with some ending up on the wrong side of the law to make themselves a living. Life sure was an adventure for these folks!
The Mestiza de Sangley
She might seem Native American, but she isn’t. This captivating, mysterious portrait taken by photographer Francisco Van Camp in the late 19th century shows a beautiful young woman wearing traditional garments from a Native Island in the Philippines. Very little is known about her–only that she was a “Mestiza de Sangley” woman, a term that originates from the Spanish Philippines.
The term “Sangley mestizo”, or Chinese mestizo, originating in the Spanish Colonial Period during the 16th-19th centuries, was used to describe people of Chinese ancestry. Dutch photographer Francisco Van Camp took this photo in his studio in Manilla, ca. 1875, but unfortunately, the woman’s identity is unknown, though some regard her as the “Mona Lisa” of the Pacific Islands.
The Famous Leavitt Saloon
Bob’s Saloon was a popular establishment in the early 1900s for the inhabitants of Jordan, Montana. This 1904 photo by L.A. Huffman shows a group of cowboys relaxing in front of the old saloon. Robert Leavitt, the saloon’s owner, happened to be a cowboy himself and was among the first residents to settle in Jordan.
The old west saloons offered patrons all types of entertainment such as dancing girls, card games, dice games, and even bowling. Many saloons employed piano players and put on theatrical skits to entertain customers.