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John Ward ran the cigar shop, just inside the front door, as an independent contractor, selling cigars, tobacco and smokers articles. Ward found his man in Luke Short, who had moved to Forth Worth in late At some point inJohn Templeton sold his White Elephant interest to Winfield Scott, a cattle baron and real estate developer who was buying up many local properties.

The restaurant was at Main. Later, while Williams was standing outside the entrance, Hayward pulled up in a hack. Over the years, the White Elephant had maintained a remarkably clean image, at least for a saloon.

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Bill Ward took note and launched an extensive three-month face-lift of the White Elephant, capped by another grand reopening on June 8. He not only placed ads in the local newspapers and the Fort Worth city directory but also advertised in other major Texas cities.

None of the new owners ever put down roots in the community, which did not help business either. The police came running, but Nichols had already fled into the night, and he soon afterward left town. Ward turned what had been a modest short-order kitchen into an elegant restaurant that attracted its own clientele. In the mids, he also ran the clubroom at the Cattle Exchange Saloon.

But the most welcome improvement may have been the three water closets indoor toilets on the premises, with separate facilities for gents and ladies. There was a seating section for customers who did not want to eat alongside the serious drinkers. When the authorities arrived moments later, the former marshal lay bleeding to death half in and half out of the doorway of a shooting gallery next door to the White Elephant.

His genial manners made well-heeled customers feel welcome. Entrance to the casino area was up a narrow stairway along the north wall, then through a closely monitored door at the top.

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Neither required a liquor license or payoffs to the authorities. After about a year, John Ward dropped out of the saloon business, took a variety of other jobs and then helped launch Texas League baseball.

As long as their establishment called itself a Saloon and Billiard Parlor, they could never hope to achieve the saloon equivalent of a five-star rating.

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For more great articles be sure to subscribe to Wild West magazine today! And every February 8, the Short-Courtright gunfight is chisholm trail casino reviews on Exchange Avenue in front of the saloon. But not long after the grand opening, the Palais Royal became just another flavor of the month.

They immediately set about transforming a bar-and-billiards joint into one of the premier establishments of its kind anywhere in the Southwest — a magnet for big-time gamblers as well as for the high chisholm trail casino reviews of Fort Worth society.

Among these four Western institutions, only the saloon combined drinking, gambling and male fellowship under one roof. The White Elephant name was unofficially retired for the next 60 years, while various other businesses occupied the space at Main and Sixth streets.

The new White Elephant on the block of Main had its grand reopening in January It was a genuine work of art consisting of three large pieces that took up most of an entire wall — a front counter where customers stood, a liquor case holding the merchandise, and a mirrored backbar stretching the length of the front counter.

The record is murky, but Ward may have even been proprietor of the business while Scott owned the building and the real estate it sat on. The heart of the gambling operation now was no longer the big poker game but the telegraph hookup that brought in the latest reports of horse races, prizefights and ballgames from all over the country.

The feud, borne out of a power struggle and personal animosity, fueled by liquor and testosterone, brought Courtright to the foyer chisholm trail casino reviews the White Elephant that night in a typical drunken state.

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The improved White Elephant probably employed a staff of as chisholm trail casino reviews as men to maintain round-the-clock operations. Altogether, the usable space of the saloon and turf exchange totaled 4, square feet.

Long-haired Jim loudly called Short out, and the unflappable gambler agreed.

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The variety theater was a precursor to vaudeville, encouraging men to drink while they viewed scantily clad women. The saloon area boasted a massive foot bar that outdid even the old Luke Short Chisholm trail casino reviews. The slayer of Courtright was no longer a full partner in the saloon, but rather an independent contractor working for Ward.

It took less than a year for the Jewish partners to realize they possessed a white elephant in the pejorative sense of the term.