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billy the kid photo.jpg
Courtesy Old West Show and Auction

  The only known photograph of  William H. McCarty, alias William Bonney, alias Billy the Kid — arguably the single most famous photograph to emerge from the Wild West — will be up for public sale for the first time ever next weekend.
   And no, the young desperado in the photo doesn’t look anything like Paul Newman, Kris Kristofferson, Emilio Estevez, or any of the other actors who played the Kid in the movies. 
  Experts regard the credit card-sized tintype as the only authenticated surviving image of the Kid. It was taken around 1879, outside a saloon in Fort Sumner, New Mexico, when McCarty was barely out of his teens and already a budding cattle thief and jailbird

  The Kid gave it to his pal Dan Dedrick, and it’s been in the family ever since. It’s occasionally shown up in museum shows and has been featured in numerous books on the Kid, including one by Pat Garrett, the sheriff who gunned Billy down on July 14, 1881–130 years ago next month.



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