A Trail Map of HOSTAGE

How did Bret and Bart

get to New Orleans?




Bart Maverick came down the Mississippi River to New Orleans at Brother Bret's invitation,[1] but from where?


Since he was delayed for four days above Natchez while working a cattle boat,[1] we might assume he was coming from St. Louis. In 1879, it was there — where the Missouri River meets the Mississippi — that cattle were shipped from the Kansas railheads to their eastern and southern markets. St. Louis was also a favorite gambling hub for both Maverick Brothers.[2]


By the time Bart arrived in New Orleans, Bret had obviously been there for some time. The story gives no indication to Bret's back trail, but we might assume that he, too, came down the Mississippi. Somewhere along the river is the likely place to have first heard of the coming maiden voyage of the River Princess and the financial potential of it's elite Creole passengers.[2]





The cattle boat on which Bart Maverick was working his way to New Orleans got grounded on a sandbar just north of Natchez.[1] Bart probably never had a chance to get into Natchez proper while working the barge. His time would have been spent tending to the cattle or refloating the barge. If he had gotten into Natchez at all, he would probably have telegraphed Brother Bret in New Orleans to let him know of his delay.[3]





Upon landing in New Orleans, Bart Maverick asked a stevedore for directions to 17 Rue Rubidoux.[1] There was no such street in the French Quarter, or any other part of New Orleans, at that time or since. And as the street numbering started with 100, either from the river north or from Canal Street east, there would have been no street number 17.[4] Therefore, we may surmise that 17 Rue Rubidoux was not a street address. Rather, Rue Rubidoux may have been the name of Brother Bret's hotel, and he was staying in room 17. The misleading name Rue Rubidoux (French for Rubidoux Street) for a hotel would have been rather confusing, and could possibly explain Bart's need for directions in a city he was undoubtedly already familiar. 17, at least, would have put Bret's room on the ground floor, which is consistent with the story.[3]





Finally succeeding in gaining passage on the maiden voyage of the River Princess at the personal invitation of Henri Devereaux, the Maverick Brothers traveled from New Orleans to St. Louis in splendor.[1]





We lose track of Bret and Bart Maverick after St. Louis, but within a few months, they will have traveled to another of the brothers' favorite cities: Denver, Colorado.[5]


01. Maverick, Hostage (1957), Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.

02. The Maverick Saga, Maverick Trails

03. The Conjectural Maverick, Maverick Trails

04. Street Names and Numbers; Storyville New Orleans (retrieved April 25, 2015)

05. Maverick, Shady Deal at Sunny Acres (1958), Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.

Bret and Bart Maverick’s trail

from New Orleans to St. Louis

April 21 – , 1879

Bart Maverick’s
cattle boat

grounded on
a sand bar

April 9 – 12, 1879

Bart Maverick’s trail
from St. Louis to New Orleans

April 4 – 15, 1879

Bret Maverick’s trail
from St. Louis to New Orleans

March, 1879

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