Glenwood Springs, Colorado’s most famous resident, Doc Holliday left behind a legacy of history and a few mysteries.
Learn all about Wild West icon, Doc Holliday in Glenwood Springs, the final resting place of the sharp-shooting dentist, but bring your sleuthing skills because we still have a few unsolved mysteries.
John Henry Holliday, better known as Doc Holliday is a Western legend famous for his part in the gunfight at the OK Corral that left three members of the Cowboys cattle-rustling gang dead.
Because of his legal troubles in Arizona and an advanced case of tuberculosis, Doc knew he was a “dead man walking” with neither the time nor the inclination to stick around for a trial; instead he fled to Colorado.
With the clock ticking, Doc headed to Glenwood Springs, a place renowned for its healing hot springs. In 1887, he settled into a room at the Hotel Glenwood Springs at the corner of Grand Ave. and 8th St., where the new Doc Holliday Museum is now located.
With his health worsening, he was unable to earn a living. He died on Nov. 8, 1887, at the age of 36, destitute. As he lay dying he is reported to have asked for a shot of whiskey. Doc fully expected to die in gunfight, but finding himself at death’s door in a bed instead, he appreciated the irony of his situation and uttered his last words: “This is funny.”
- Doc Holliday Memorial. Glenwood’s newest museum is dedicated to all things Doc and the era in which he lived. The centerpiece of the collection is a derringer pistol purportedly given to Doc by his sweetheart, Big Nose Kate. Though controversy swirls around the firearm, the mystery continues to fascinate Western history buffs.
- Doc Holliday’s Grave. A half-mile hike up the moderately steep trail brings visitors to Linwood Cemetery where Glenwood’s pioneer settlers are buried. Though his memorial marker is situated in a choice spot overlooking Glenwood Springs, because he was penniless at his passing, Doc was likely buried in “Potter’s Field.” His exact whereabouts are yet another mystery.
- See Doc Holliday in the flesh. During the summer months, Doc Holliday along with outlaw Kid Curry occasionally make appearances for photos and fun-filled history lessons at Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park.
- Annual Ghost Walk sponsored by the Frontier Historical Society. Considered one of the best events of its kind in Colorado. For several weeks surrounding Halloween, the Frontier Historical Society leads Ghost Walks in Linwood Cemetery where Doc Holliday and an assembly of spectral apparitions come forth to tell the tales of their lives.
- Doc Holliday’s Saloon. Located beneath the neon gun sign in downtown Glenwood Springs. Sample the green chili or the Rocky Mountain Oysters if you dare. Play a round of pool, but be sure to check out the gallery of photos lining the walls, which include Doc, the Earp brothers and even ghoulish post-mortem images of Billy Clanton and the McLaury brothers.
Find out more about Glenwood’s history and make plans to visit at visitglenwood.com.