The Frontier Odyssey of Constable John F. Kirgan
By Bill Merrell with David Carle
After serving with the 1st Illinois Regiment in the Mexican War in 1846, John F. Kirgan made his way westward, where his saga intersected with that of the new state of California's constitutional convention in 1850. The Comstock mining excitement at Virginia City ten years later brought Kirgan to Nevada, where he experienced first-hand prison politics in Carson City. Finally, fate delivered him to Bodie in 1877, where he found himself working as a constable, jailer and deputy sheriff during the boom years. Serving as the "boss lawman" of bodie was the culmination of Kirgan's live -- an odyssey the placed him in contact with the emerging history of the American West.