After the Civil War, markets for Texas beef opened up in the Midwest and East. The Transcontinental Railroad was the early economic connection between East and West, making two cities in Kansas—Abilene and Dodge City—the nearest and most convenient rail centers for the Texas cattle drives. Dodge City became the most famous of all the cow towns. It consisted of one main business street running parallel with the Santa Fe rail line. One side of town was respectable and the other was virtually lawless. In Westerns, saloons are usually depicted as the main businesses of the town, and Dodge City was no different. Wyatt Earp and his brothers along with Bat Masterson were some of the town’s historically famous lawmen. Dodge City gained its cinema reputation first from Dodge City (1939), starring Errol Flynn and Olivia de Havilland. Later films celebrating Dodge are Tombstone(1993) and Wyatt Earp (1994).

Historical Dictionary of Westerns in Cinema. . 2012.

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