Before Morning Breaks: Floozys on Main Street

January 6, 1871                          Honorary Editor: Dangling Participle Lichen

Patricia Woolsey fights for culture, a 6th grade eduation, and keeping your pants buttoned.

Last’s week’s horse race down Main Street by gauzily clad ladies of negotiable virtue set off a roaring firestorm.Prairie mesdames Patricia Woolsey and Alice Hopkins began a campaign to remove the “underbelly of indecency from our small settlement.”

Darn It, Roxie, You've always been ahead of your time.

Holding wooden signs, the women marched in front of both the Salt Lick Saloon and Opal’s Palace. “But the signs were too dang heavy,” said Roxie Poley. “So we leaned them against the building and  just strolled around in front of the doors, trying to peek inside.”

Sugar Cherie, one of the “flowers of the night”, hung out of the second floor window of the bordello and poured a bucket of water on the women, ending the first day’s siege.

Photograph taken before Alice Hopkins got drenched. Who knew she could speak like a mule skinner when wet?

It was several days before the women returned. Fired up by traveling preacher, Vig Noyes, the  settler women, who call themselves The Daughters of Two Pan, yelled and shook fists at any man trying to enter the establishments.

Despite the rain/sleet, the Daughters continued to beleaguer the doors to both the saloon and the bordello across the street.  Silky Sue, saloon owner, sent hot coffee out to the ladies. Half accepted it. While warming themselves with beverage and giving this interview, two intrepid miners approached the brothel, spat a chaw of tobacco at the women’s feet,  and offered “the tall loose-footed one” $1 for a roll in one of Opal’s beds.

“I hit him so hard, his eyes wove a nice little braid, criss-crossing back and forth.” said Roxie Poley.

At this point, Big Opal herself stepped outside of her building and discharged a shotgun over the women’s heads.

“This is a heinous crudity.” Mrs. Woolsey told the Two Pan Tattler as she ducked. “Every woman of the valley, except Violet Spinrad, is here supporting these hussies’ removal.” Mrs. Woolsey gave an aggravated sniff when asked why Mrs. Spinrad hadn’t joined the cause.

Aunt Tilly gets confused. (What do you expect when she looks like a guy? And no, he doesn't know. Don't any of you tell "Aunt Tilly" either.)

Big Opal has another hissy fit.

At that point  a protest sign, next to the women,  splintered to pieces as Big Opal reloaded her shotgun.

The Daughters ran followed by Big Opal’s bellowed curses which are too loutish even for this tatty newspaper to print.

(Thanks volunteers for joining against Prairie Indecency. Let me give you a shout out for your good-natured, unknowing participation.)

Roxie: http://sannasbag.blogspot.com/

Alice:  http://alicelynn.wordpress.com/

Honorary Editor: Pat (for finding the dangling participle

in the last edition) http://www.patriciaklichen.com/

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About Barb

I escaped from a hardscrabble farm in Oklahoma. I'm not sure why people think I have an accent. I miss the sunshine, but not the fried foods.
This entry was posted in A Laugh, Humor, Pioneer Friday in Two Pan and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

53 Responses to Before Morning Breaks: Floozys on Main Street

  1. Pingback: We Don’t Need No Book Learnin’ | Before Morning Breaks

  2. Pingback: Valentine’s Day at Opal’s Sporting Parlor | Before Morning Breaks

  3. Pingback: Remedies to Forget | Before Morning Breaks

  4. Marcia Clarke says:

    This was too funny, enjoyed so much I waa LOL.

    Like

  5. The Hook says:

    Hilarious and original! Keep up the good work!

    Like

  6. Pingback: Burning the Fat | Before Morning Breaks

  7. JustI says:

    I love reading the Two Pan Tattler! I’m running a little behind this week. Where exactly WAS Violet Spinrad while the Daughters laid siege on The Salt Lick Saloon and Opal’s Palace? I think Silky Sue has a soft spot for the beleaguered ladies of Two Pan! I can’t wait for next weeks installment.

    Like

  8. Beth says:

    As usual I can’t come up with anything cogent, or better, devastatingly amusing to say, so I’ll just give my two thumbs up on the post. Well done. Sorry I missed out on the recipe building. (Seeing a lawyer with my brother.) Sweet Elisa

    Like

  9. Elyse says:

    Great time, as always with your blog Barb. Thanks for proving that even if you take the way-back machine, things are still more or less the same. Or since this is an old mining town, more ore less the same. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist)

    Like

  10. Androgoth says:

    Great Posting…

    Androgoth

    Like

  11. Love your names – Two Pan – Salt Lick. You must have a lot of fun knitting this stuff together.

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Two Pan is actually an abandoned mining camp. I found it on a wilderness hike. Nothing is there now. But it was fun to turn in a 360 and imagine what was. That’s where the idea for a book came from…set 150 years later with the descendents of these folks.

      It’s been an interesting, hilarious journey. Thanks for coming along.

      Like

  12. Rose L ( aka TwoPans Rollickin' Rose) says:

    “Patricia Woolsey fights for culture, a 6th grade eduation, and keeping your pants buttoned.”
    Apparently she needs the EDUCATION (see misspelling in quote above) so she should continue her quest!! One out of three would be good!
    Your posts are fun to read!

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Thanks Rose,
      As you know, it’s hard for a girl to get a good schooling because everyone expects her to marry and learn biscuit recipes instead of the “times” tables.

      It’s quite refreshing to know that even “Rollickin’ Rose” reads the Two Pan Tattler.

      Like

  13. souldipper says:

    Nothing boring about Two Pan – except maybe for the men who are too scared to show their faces on the upper balconies. Those are the husbands who supposedly rode over to the next valley to help some unknown stranger with his fields.

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Uh-huh. You’ve heard the ol’ goin’-to-help-the-neighbor excuse before. No telling what we’d find in the upper rooms. Perhaps Sugar Cherie is practicing her accent.

      Like

  14. Did you dangle another participle in there just for me to find?: “While warming themselves with beverage and giving this interview, two intrepid miners….” And Floozys instead of Floozies? Now you’re just messing with me.

    Like

  15. momaescriva says:

    Oh the imagination you have. I am amazed. Dang that DP Lichen, she gets all of us one time or another.

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Being persnickety about grammar, reading words instead of content, catches the smallest of errors.

      There are 2 more dangling participles for you. Let’s watch Pat cringe. Bwaaaahaaaa haaa.

      Like

  16. I don’t always have time to read all your words my dear, but your pictures speak volumes! You are a hoot! Margie

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Thanks for your honesty, Margie. That gives me a fun idea. Someday I should put pictures in which have NOTHING to do with the post, then I’ll be able to tell how many people actually read the darn thing.

      Like

  17. You deserve a complimentary (very) Pink Elephant for this post. As do the Daughter of Two Pan. Just

    Like

    • As I started to say (hic) Just remember they are strong (or is it hard) liquor.

      Like

      • Barb says:

        That’s “stout” liquor. As the namesake of this drink, I’m glad you were able to belly up to the bar and make a comment.
        A group of us sat around a table trying to determine the ingredients last Wednesday (I kid you not.) It wasn’t an easy task to make a pinkish drink with ingredients available in an isolated valley in 1870. (No cherries, kirsch, strawberries, etc)
        The winning liquor chef was Moma. The drink will be revealed soon. We didn’t test them because we thought they might kill us.

        Like

        • Ah. A Freudian slip me forgetting the word stout. As I said somewhere I think the colour is not relevant. Pink Elephants are drunk by men on three day benders, who sell their wives and children into slavery and buy imaginary gold mines. Are they going to remember the colour? I don’t think so. I am looking forward to seeing the recipe though.

          Like

  18. Spectra says:

    I loved the line Maineiac already quoted, so second that! Very visual.

    This reminds me, I also worked at a restaurant/bar, on Cannery Row in Monterey, that used to be the famous Ho-House from John Steinbecks Novels (Cannery Row and Sweet Thursday). (I feel a post coming on…) I’m waiting for one of these protesting pioneer women to get all drunkt up and make a shameless fool of herself one of these days…

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Wait a minute…why would you think such prudent women would do that? Oh…I see…maybe a personal flashback from a frolicking night at the Ho-House?

      We’ll all be over to read that post. Just let us get our protest signs ready first. (Except for Big Al…his pockets will be full of dollar bills.)

      Like

  19. Big Al says:

    Funny stuff. There’s a reason this is the world’s oldest profession. It has never had an unemployment problem, yet it is still under siege. Go figure.

    Like

    • Barb says:

      You could be right. My research shows that this was quite lucrative for a woman. If she were business-wise she could open her own flop house in short time and thereafter own property and several businesses.

      According to “Those Naughty Ladies of the Old West” by Gary & Gloria Meier, many cities counted on the monthly fees the individual ladies and each house paid for their licenses.

      Interestingly, many of the madams married after gaining success. Some retired. Many lost everything…bamboozled by lifestyle or the no-good guy they wed.

      Like

  20. pegoleg says:

    “Floozys on Main Street” would be a great name for a band.

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Peg’O…Do you play an instrument? There are openings at the Salt Lick venue. Between sets there’s all the Pink Elephant Childs drinks you want.

      Like

  21. dan says:

    Good article. Put me down for the DAMM participation outside Silky Sues. (Drunks Against Mad Mothers)

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Dan…I knew you’d be weaving around outside the Salt Lick saloon, placing bets on who’d get their bustle blasted.
      We’re all watching you to make sure you stay out of Big Opal’s Sporting Palace across the street. (Funny, funny acronym)

      Like

  22. magsx2 says:

    Hi Barb,
    Very well done, I loved it, a great read. 😀
    Great job with the photos as well.

    Like

  23. winsomebella says:

    Do we get to see pictures of the working girls next post??

    Like

  24. Barb, this is hilarious–and very well written. We all need a smile or three- and this was at least a dozen or more. You have the old west nailed to a wooden post for display–no doubt about it. Great job on this post, a great read !

    Like

    • Barb says:

      Thanks R. Here’s the funny thing about change…I do research on the 1800s and discover the same things happen in 2011…it just happens with a bit of updated technology. Thanks for reading.

      Like

  25. gigihawaii says:

    Funny! I love your photos, and those women were so game to go along with it. Great friends to have!

    Like

  26. Nance says:

    I saw an episode of “Lie To Me” where the hooker said there were two kinds of “working girls”: the kind who like sex and the kind who like money. Does that leave out any of us? Occupy the Bordello!

    Like

    • Barb says:

      ooooooo. I love that. There’s an old hotel in Pendleton Oregon called the Working Girls Hotel. It had a brothel in it all the way until the 80s.
      It’s been refurbished and turned into a legit bed and breakfast…complete with a lot of stories. People get a real kick out of saying they spent a night at a whore house.

      Like

  27. Roxie Matthews says:

    What fun! And what dedication those girls had! I’m always available to pose for illustrations.

    Like

    • Barb says:

      That’s what I love about you, Roxie. You’re always available. Hoot. Hoot.
      Wait a minute…did you mean to pose for an artist’s illustrations? Like in the Titanic? Like nude?
      Are you applying for a job at Big Opal’s, too?

      Like

  28. It’s amazing what your mind spins up sinuses and all. Very funny. 🙂

    Like

  29. “I hit him so hard, his eyes wove a nice little braid, criss-crossing back and forth.” said Roxie Poley.
    What a great read, I really loved this line.

    Like

  30. Another fun post. (And you always come up with such super pictures to go with them, too!) Thanks for the morning chuckle.

    Like

  31. JSD says:

    This is so funny! It’s great to start the day with a good laugh. May I post this to FB?

    Like

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