[Ads-l] Bat Masterson Quote

Shapiro, Fred fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Sat Feb 18 14:13:40 EST 2017

There is a great quotation attributed to outlaw-turned-lawman "Bat" Masterson:  "There are many in this old world of ours who hold that things break even for all of us.  I have observed, for example, that we all get the same amount of ice.  The rich get it in the summertime, and the poor get it in the winter."  When I search ProQuest Historical Newspapers, I find articles from the early 1960s claiming that this was found on Masterson's typewriter when he died at his desk in 1921 (he was a newspaperman at that point in his life).

Can anyone supply any information about the veracity of this story?  Does it appear in print before the 1960s, and, if so, how far back can it be found?

Fred Shapiro


The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list