A Deeper Wild

William L. Sullivan's historical novel tracks down one of the frontier West's most controversial characters -- Joaquin Miller, the swashbuckling pony express rider who won international fame as the "Poet of the Sierras."

Sullivan tells the tale in a Louis L'Amour style that suits the wild, Western subject. Chapter-by-chapter notes at the back of book reveal that the story is 95 percent true. Miller really did shoot a sheriff, have two wives at once, and rise to fame as the bestselling American poet of the age.

Suggested retail price: $18.95
464 pages, 6"x9", 26 illustrations, 1 map
ISBN 0967783003

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Hear Bill discuss the book (1-minute video)

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Joaquin Miller introduced the world to the concept of cowboys and Indians. He went to London dressed like a pony express bandit -- an act that was later copied by Buffalo Bill Cody. Back in Oregon, however, his white wife Minnie Myrtle was not impressed. When she found out that he already had an Indian family in the woods, she divorced him and founded the Oregon women's movement, lecturing at the Oregon State Fair with Susan B. Anthony.


The gold mining town of Canyon City, Oregon has a museum honoring Joaquin Miller, who was elected County Judge there in the 1860s. Miller later lived in Washington DC and Oakland, California, where a cabin and a park have been named in his memory.


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