LONGVIEW, Texas (KETK) — The Gregg County Historical Museum hosted its annual Dalton Days event on Saturday, and with it, the annual Wild West Show.
The festival began Saturday morning with the first of four live reenactments of the city’s infamous bank robbery, which originally took place on May 23, 1894. The shows are meant to put an emphasis upon the bravery and heroism of the citizens and law enforcement in Longview on that day.
According to the Gregg County Historical Museum, the original incident involved Bill Dalton and three members of his gang robbing the First National Bank, triggering a shootout that left three people dead, including one of the gang members. In what the museum calls “one of the Old West’s biggest shootouts,” some 200 shots were fired by outlaws and townspeople who responded to the holdup.
Dalton Days has been a tradition in Longview since 1994, complete with children’s games, food vendors, crafts, a petting zoo, and Western style entertainment as a celebration of western heritage.
This year, as in many years past, the Western style entertainment included the Harvest Moon Country grass band on the LMFA stage in the Sculpture Garden, as well as artisans and craftsmen such as a blacksmith, soap maker, wood craftsman, chuck wagon demonstrations, root beer saloon and many others.