Chronicle Of The Old West

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WRITER’S GUIDELINES
FOR CHRONICLE OF THE OLD WEST

Chronicle of the Old West is a monthly 1800’s newspaper for Old West enthusiasts. These are people for whom the Old West is a time and place of the heart.

WRITING STYLE:

We are looking for articles that educate, entertain and excite people about the Old West. The articles should be historically accurate. – We do not do fiction. We are looking for the real flavor and atmosphere of the Old West, not technical or dry scholarly accounts. Articles should be written as if the author is a reporter for Chronicle of the Old West writing about a current event. We want to give the reader the feeling the event just took place, and the reader is at the time and location of the subject of the article. The author should not make reference to himself within the article. (A sample article is at the end of the writer’s guidelines.)

Subjects can be about the adventure or daily life of outlaws and lawmen, ranchers and farmers, trappers and settlers, Native Americans and cavalry.

If the article is about a well-known person or event, it should include new or not commonly known information.

The format is newsprint tabloid size in sepia tone ink, giving the flavor of a vintage Old West newspaper.

We accept original or reprint articles. Please indicate if the material has previously been published and where. We purchase the rights not only to print the material in Chronicle of the Old West, but also the rights to reprint in our web site and an anthology.

Original sources are best (newspaper accounts, memoirs, documents), rather than compilations from previous publications. Do not include your sources within the article itself, but do include them as an addendum for our review.

So that our readers will get a better feeling of the timing of the article, it will appear in the issue of the month in which the article’s final outcome took place.

TIMELINE & GEOGRAPHIC COVERAGE:

The age of the Old West was from 1800 to 1900. We give a special emphasis to what is known as the "Wild West" from 1860 to 1900. The Old West covers the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean, and the Canadian border to the Rio Grande River.

QUERY LETTER:

Provide a one-page summary of the story with sources and short bio explaining your expertise and credits. If you would like your submission returned, please include a self-addressed stamped envelope.

SUBMISSIONS:

Manuscripts should be typed, single space, on one side of standard white 8 ˝ x 11 paper in Times or Arial fonts. Use bond paper and one inch margins on all sides. Name, address, telephone number and approximate word count should be at the top of the first page. Sources and additional reading should be included at the end of the manuscript. You can also submit manuscripts on an IBM compatible computer disk or via e-mail at OldPress@RavenHeart.com

In addition to byline and payment, we will provide authors with two copies of Chronicle of the Old West in which the article appears. When we buy a manuscript, we reserve the right to edit, rewrite and shorten it. Please allow up to two month’s response time for queries and manuscripts.

PHOTOS/ART:

Photos, maps and art are encouraged and may sway a decision. Material can be black and white, color slides or archival material. Private photos are especially valued. Submit photocopies with query.


ARTICLE LENGTH:

Feature articles can vary in length from short 500 word clips to 1,500 word essays. Articles can be one-time, a series of related articles or a continuing saga. We also have special departments. They include: • "The Chuck Wagon." Recipes of the Old West. It is necessary to include information on the history of the recipe. • "The Old West on Celluloid." How current and past western movies portray the Old West. • "The Old West Today." Descriptions of places and events where people can experience the Old West through participation and observation. This needs to be submitted four months prior to the event.

PAYMENT:

Payment is made within 30 days following publication. Chronicle of the Old West pays five to eight cents per word with the exception of the column "The Chuck Wagon." The payment for "The Chuck Wagon" is $10.00 per recipe.

SAMPLE ARTICLE:

JESSE JAMES MARRIED

April 24, 1874, Kearney, Missouri – Jesse Woodson James and Zerelda Amanda Mimms, known to all as Zee, were bound in holy matrimony. The wedding took place at the home of Zee’s sister, Mrs. W. Boling Browder (Lucy) in Kearney, Missouri. Their uncle, Rev. William James known as “Uncle Billy,” a Methodist minister from Kansas City, Missouri, performed the ceremony. Zee’s sister, Lucy, was the matron of honor. Her other two sisters, Nan and Sally, were Zee’s attendants. Her brother, Thomas Mimms, gave Zee away.

Because Pinkerton agents are pursuing Jesse for supposed crimes he committed, the wedding was not generally known. Even so, about 50 friends and relatives attended the wedding.

As far as Jesse’s supposed crimes are concerned, those who know him don’t believe a temperate, Bible quoting man raised in a religious home could have done the crimes of which he has been accused. There are also those who say if he did do those activities, he was justified because of the horrid treatment toward Southern sympathizers during and following the Civil War.

Zee’s mother, and father before he passed away, opposed the wedding not only because of Jesse’s criminal actions, but also because Jesse and Zee are first cousins. Zee’s mother, Mary, is a sister of Rev. Robert S. James, the deceased father of Jessie James. Zee was actually named for Jesse’s mother, Zerelda.

Jesse and Zee met in 1865 following Jesse being seriously injured by Union soldiers during surrender negotiations. Following the Civil War, Southern regulars and irregulars were required to surrender to Union troops. Jesse and a few of his irregulars had agreed to meet under a white flag with a Union captain to discuss surrender terms. After terms had been discussed, Jesse’s irregulars were given a week to come to a final decision. As Jesse’s group left, a troop of Federals entered town, and not knowing what was happening, opened fire. Jesse received a serious injury in the right lung.

Zee nursed Jessie from August until late October. When Jessie left, still in poor health, they agreed that if Jessie recovered they would be married. For six years there was off-and-on wooing.

Following the ceremony, the wedding party received word that two Pinkerton Detectives were riding over from Liberty, Missouri to arrest Jesse. Even though the Pinkertons could have been dispatched with no problem, Jesse and his friends decided that a rouse would take place. Because of Zee’s small size, her sister hid Zee between the feather bed and the mattress, leaving Zee just enough space at the top for air. Jesse and two friends, hid in the barn with horses at the ready.

When the Pinkertons were inside Lucy’s house, Jesse and his friends rode away, making as much noise as possible in order to draw the detectives into following them. Because of the riding skills of Jesse and his friends, and their experience at evading Union soldiers during the Civil War, the Pinkertons were led on a wild goose chase. Jesse then circled back to Zee’s sister’s home, and picked up Zee.

Jesse and Zee are rumored to be heading toward Tennessee where there are no warrants for Jesse’s arrest.


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