It seems like ages since I last spent time on my research of the Zorro-like bandit, Salomon Pico. Back then, I wrote blogs, delivered lectures, and even took part in a documentary film on the subject for European TV. But over time, my writing consumed more hours of every day, and research and marketing for the Zack Tolliver, FBI series took the rest.
A few years ago, I heard from a direct descendant of Salomon who was just learning about his famous/notorious antecedent. His family had not spoken of their connection to the outlaw and Bill was ready to learn all he could. I helped a bit, but he went on with his own research and we lost touch. I occasionally come across his emails and feel a tug at my conscience for letting the matter drop.
As often happens in such situations, it takes a few generations for the family feelings about a notorious relative to change from reluctance to discuss the connection, to interest and acceptance. When this occurs, when descendants share, new facts sprout up like flowers in spring.
I have long put off writing the book I had planned about Salomon. Recently, I vowed to begin the journey. Returning to my research, I was amazed by the abundance of new details I learned in just a few, short hours. Just as an example, I found two additional spouses/partners with whom Salomon produced offspring and more details about the life and death of his first wife. And so the quest begins anew.
This project will take a long time. There are still many gaps in the life of this complex man. I will need to fit the project in among ongoing projects and promises. But this time, I intend to keep the fires burning. When COVID goes away, I will impart what I have learned in lectures. Meanwhile, I’ll share in the form of blogs such as this one from time to time.
If you have an interest in the man who inspired Johnston McCulley to write “The Curse of Capistrano”, later known as “The Mark of Zorro”, stay tuned (or if your question won’t wait, write me at firstname.lastname@example.org).