How did Bret get to Tampico?




In 1877, Bret Maverick spent much of the time between adventures on the trail of Poker Alice out West.[1] So it is likely that before heading to his beloved river country, he was coming from New Mexico Territory. Without finding Alice over a discouraging stretch of months, and no other lucrative poker games in the meantime, he probably decided to head back to the Mississippi by rail, where he knew he could always find some deep pockets to mine.[2]





Bret Maverick's narration told us that riverboat passage from Memphis to New Orleans was $47 (if one doesn't play poker).[3] Even though he specified the ticket price from Memphis, it is more than likely Bret arrived in Memphis by way of St. Louis, along the Mississippi River, as that was where any railroads from the West in 1877 would have most practically have delivered him.[2]





While in New Orleans, Bret Maverick would have spent much of his time in the heart of the French Quarter, along Orleans and Bourbon streets, where the major casinos could be found.[2] He stayed at the Hotel Claibourne on Canal Street, along the southwest edge of the Carré. He was invited to the House of Gireaux on "Rue de la Conte,"[3] undoubtedly an antiquated variation of Conti Street, also in the French Quarter.[2]





Roul Gireaux's proposition for Bret Maverick sent him to find Steve Corbett at La Cantina Americana in Tampico, Mexico. Bret would have sailed out of New Orleans and southwest across the Gulf of Mexico to Tampico, a four- to five-day crossing.[3]





Bret Maverick left Tampico after Steve Corbett, knowing he was headed for Corpus Christi. Corbett, anxious to avoid U. S. authorities, disembarked at Matamoros, just south of the Texas-Mexico border. Bret did not disembark in Mexico, but stayed on the boat all the way into Corpus Christi. Once there, Bret's trail ended at Roul Gireaux's Corpus Christi residence on Charing Road, where Corbett was finally met with justice.[3]





Nothing in the story indicates where Bret Maverick traveled to next. But his unfinished business with Lefty Dolan's ghost,[4] not to mention finding Poker Alice, soon led him back into the New Mexico and Arizona territories.[1]


01. The New Maverick (1978), Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.

02. The Conjectural Maverick, Maverick Trails

03. Maverick, Escape to Tampico (1958), Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.

04. Maverick, The Long Hunt (1957), Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.

Bret Maverick's course
from New Orleans to Tampico

June 25 – 30, 1877

Bret Maverick's course
from Tampico to Corpus Christi

July 27 – 29, 1877


Bret Maverick's trail

from Memphis to New Orleans

June 13 – 17, 1877

Bret Maverick's trail

from Corpus Christi

July 30 – early August, 1877

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