Wyatt Earp In Seattle - The original piece this post started from...
Author Neil Low's additional info on Earp in Seattle!
I really enjoyed the Wyatt Earp link, already being familiar with the story.
The block where Earp opened a gambling house has a very colorful history. The bar was located right next to the G.O. Guy’s at 2nd and Yesler, where in 1901 Chief of Police William Meredith tried to gun down John Considine, the gambling ringleader who opposed Wyatt Earp.
In June of 1901, Considine accused Meredith of shaking him down illegally. When that didn’t get the reaction he hoped for, he told the City Council that Meredith had impregnated the star performer in his stage show, a young contortionist. The City Council demanded Meredith’s resignation.
Available information makes it look almost like a chance meeting between Meredith and Considine, but my analysis suggests that Meredith was waiting for the Considine brothers with his own posse of sorts: Sheriff Cudahy, a detective (who later became police chief) and a beat cop—which very much reminds me of the shootout at the OK Corral. My hunch is that after Wyatt Earp’s visit, Meredith felt emboldened enough to try this kind of western street justice on Considine.
After writing his resignation, not effective for another three weeks, Meredith took action, seeking his chance at heroics and fame. Heavily armed and letting all who saw him know that he was after Considine, he fired two blasts from a sawed-off shotgun but only winged Considine, who had just entered the G.O. Guy’s Pharmacy with his brother Tom. The wild shotgun blasts also wounded a patron at the soda counter. John reacted quickly and ran toward his assailant, grabbing him in a bear hug. Meredith tried to draw a handgun from a pocket, but John took it away and struck the chief on the head, fracturing his skull. Others who crowded the doorway disarmed Considine and held his brother Tom, pinning his arms back, keeping him out of the fray. Meredith staggered and tried to draw another pistol (one of three he was armed with), but John Considine broke free from his captors (Meredith’s accomplices), pulled his own revolver, and shot the chief three times, killing him.
Cudahy, who had been Meredith’s detective partner, while on the police department, before becoming the Sheriff, arrested the Considine brothers for pre-meditated First-Degree Murder. Meredith was given the largest funeral Seattle and the Northwest had ever seen. The Considines were acquitted at trial, and John soon partnered with Alexander Pantages, establishing vaudeville in this area, putting distance between himself and the tenderloin.
Considine was also involved in founding the Fraternal Order of Eagles and moved to Hollywood to make movies. His grandson is Tim Considine, whom you might remember from Disney’s Hardy Boys, Spin and Marty, and "My Three Sons". Pantages stuck with vaudeville and lost most of the fortune he’d made, while defending his reputation against charges of immodest behavior with a juvenile.
Although he was still the Chief of Police, William Meredith’s name does not grace the walls of the Justice Center with those who died honorably. Also interesting is that nobody has raised the specter that this was clearly an ambush and that Sheriff Cudahy and the detective (I believe to be Wapentstien) were not charged as accomplices.