True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young. Page: 115
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HOUSTON AND HOUSTONIANS 115
FRANK LE MOTTS POKER STORY.
I MET Frank LeMott in the street the other day. He was
either coming from the country or going there, I don't
know which. He had the most mournful expression on his
face when he greeted me, and he began at onee to state Ms
grievance: "That article you wrote about me being a reformed
sport has injured me seriously. It has about destroyed my reputation
as a citizen, and has done more than that, for it has
caused me actual financial loss." Of course, I felt sorry and
asked for particulars.
"It's this way," said he, "I have been in the habit of stopping
over at a little town in East Texas, and whenever I hit the town
the sheriff, the judge and a few of the leading citizens would
get busy and organize a 'little game' for my entertainment. That
game was always to be depended on to increase my funds from
$12 to $20, and I looked for it regularly. The other day I hit
that town, and while they all seemed glad enough to see me,
not one of them said a word about the 'little game.' I did not
understand it until the next day when some one told me about
that article in The Chronicle. It seems the paper beat me to
the place, and my friends were afraid to sit in with me after
reading what you wrote.
"I have not seen the article yet," said he, "but it must have
been awful, lor I heard of it all over Texas. Everywhere I have
been people have asked me about it."
Then his manner changed, and nudging me in the ribs he said:
"Tell them about Farmer Bill, about Old Fish and about Weston,
and tf you don't catch them I will eat my head."
He was referring to three distinguished citizens of Texas, New
Mexico and Arizona, who flourished in the early seventies and
whose doings furnished Frank material for some of his best
One evening Frank and I were sitting on the gallery of the
Surf Bathing House in Galveston when I asked him if gambling
Paid. He thought some time before he answered and then mid:
"That's a hard question, for it has several sides to it and can
be answered properly only after knowing which side of the table
your man sits on if it's a bank game or how your man plays his
hand if ft's short cards. Off hand I would say that gambling
does not pay, and yet I see no reason why a square man running
a square game can't make good. He has all the advantage of
making the other fellow do the guessing and to that must be
added the legitimate percentage in favor of the bank. A sport
like that who has a good game, has as sure a thing as a national
bank, and if he sticks to business and does. not go against rome
Other sport's game, he is bound to get rich.
"The best poker player I ever knew was a fellow named Wes
ton. He was a genius and could put the value on a set of thr,
two pair or a bobtail quicker than any man I ever came acresO
t was an education to watch his play. He had ral ietifi
pokor sense and he won all the time He wins at poker, bt
Here’s what’s next.
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Young, Samuel Oliver. True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young., book, 1913; Galveston, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth24646/m1/115/: accessed May 23, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .