The Wells, Fargo & Co. Shotgun Messenger and Give Away by Tracy Garrett

Today we are thrilled to welcome former Fillie Tracy Garrett back home for a visit! Please join us in welcoming her!

I’m so happy to be back at Petticoats & Pistols. Hey there, Fillies! I get to see old friends and make some new ones. I’m also glad to be here because I get to share my new release with you.

GRACE is one of a seventeen-book series set in Wildcat Ridge, a small mining town in the Uinta Mountains, Utah Territory, in 1884. The mine was devastated by two explosions, killing men, women and children, and leaving mostly widows in town. Each book introduces a widow who struggles to find a way to survive—and finds new love in the process.

When I started the book, I chose to have the hero work for the Wells Fargo & Company, and the stagecoach line serving Wildcat Ridge. As I learned more—and researched more—I discovered a television series called “Tales of Wells Fargo.” I watched a few episodes and, when Michael Landon appeared on screen as a young man wanting to be a shotgun messenger on the Wells Fargo, I knew I’d found my hero.

The shotgun messenger was literally that: he rode shotgun beside the driver, with the treasure box between his feet, holding a sawed-off shotgun loaded with buckshot. A shotgun messenger had to stay alert, identify danger in an instant and not be afraid to act on his decision to shoot. Though Wells Fargo policy said to let a robber have the money rather than risk lives, the shotgun in the hands of a good shooter was an effective deterrent.

“But the real security of the treasure boxes came from who was guarding them — the Wells Fargo shotgun messengers. They were ‘the kind of men you can depend on if you get into a fix,’ according to Wells Fargo detective Jim Hume. If thieves were foolhardy enough to try and steal a treasure box in transit, they would find themselves staring down the barrel of a sawed-off shotgun, loaded with 00 buckshot, possibly held by Wyatt Earp himself.” [from]

The shotgun messenger gave me a strong hero, sure of himself and capable. All I had to do was add… Well, you’ll have to read the book to find out.

— Now Available —


Book 10 of The Widows of Wildcat Ridge series

When a woman who has always done what she was told decides to take matters into her own hands—she just might discover her future waiting

Grace Hill has spent most of her life caring for others. When her beloved little sister is in trouble, Grace defies those who tell her she can’t, and rushes to her aid. Joining the other widows in Wildcat Ridge struggling to survive, she discovers the woman she is—a woman strong enough for a man like Benjamin Sloane.

Benjamin Sloane rides shotgun on the Wells Fargo stagecoach line through the rugged Utah Territory. He’s big-hearted, tough and about as civilized as a grizzly bear. But there’s something about a fancy lady from the big city makes him want to clean up his ways and give her his heart.


     Grace Hill stared in horror at the article in the several-weeks-old Denver newspaper. “No. This isn’t possible.”

     “What’s that, Grace? Speak up. I’ve asked you not to mumble in my presence.”

     “I apologize, Mother Hill. There was a mine collapse in—”

     “There’s always a disaster, Grace. A mine today, an earthquake tomorrow. God will have his vengeance one day soon, mark my words. Close that drape. I swear the sun is hotter this April than ever before.”

     “Yes, ma’am,” Grace rose to do as she was told. “But this collapse was in Wildcat Ridge, Utah Territory, where my sister, Eleanora lives.”

     “Scandalous place for a woman of breeding to live. Why ever did she settle there?”

     “Her husband is a miner, ma’am. He moved his wife there soon after their wedding.”

     “Is he dead?”

     The emotionless question shocked Grace and sent a shaft of sorrow through her. Could Eleanora actually be the widow of Darvin Cavender? “I don’t know. A list of th-the deceased isn’t included.”

     “If it’s God’s will, he lived. If not, she’ll find another husband to provide for her and give her children. It is the task for which woman was created.”

     Grace clamped her teeth around her tongue to keep the retort inside. God created women with minds and dreams, just like men. Woman was created for more than marriage and procreation, not that she’d say that to Mrs. Hill.

     “She has a child. A daughter.”

     She read further in the article, her brain stuttering to a halt as she realized men weren’t the only victims. “It says townspeople were killed in a second explosion while trying to rescue the miners.” Townspeople? Women? Children? “I have to go.”

     “Go where, young lady?”

     “To this place. Wildcat Ridge.” She waved the newspaper. “My sister might be…” She swallowed hard and blinked back tears. Her employer thought tears a useless luxury and Grace didn’t want another lecture. She’d had her fill of her mother-in-law’s opinions. “This article was published in the Salt Lake City paper nearly a month ago. The Denver Rocky Mountain News released the story three weeks ago. I haven’t had a letter from my sister since before the accident. She would have written if she could. I have to go to her.”

     “You will not. I forbid it.”

     Grace rose, clutching the newspaper in her fist. “My sister could be injured, even de—” She forced air into her lungs. She refused to even give voice to the possibility. “My sister and niece might need me. I have to go, Mother Hill.”

     “Don’t be ridiculous. It’s probably still winter at that elevation. Some of the passes may not even be open. How will you get there? Who will go with you? A decent woman may not travel alone all that way.”

     Grace stared over the woman’s head into an ornate, gilded mirror. She hardly recognized the image staring back. Her dark eyes seemed lifeless. Her long, dark hair tamed into a simple chignon at her nape was dull, as dull as her life had become. She wore an unflattering high-necked black gown and her only jewelry was her wedding ring and a mourning pin, woven of Theo’s blond hair, at her throat. Little remained of the happy girl she’d once been.

     If she didn’t get away from this house soon, she would become as dead inside as her husband was in truth.

GRACE, Book 10, The Widows of Wildcat Ridge

Amazon link:


In honor of the release of GRACE, I’m giving away one copy, ebook or print (U.S. only for the print), to one person who leaves a comment about ~

Do you like to read connected books by multiple authors?


Happy Reading,



Bookbub  @TracyGarrett

Twitter  TGarrett_Author

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44 thoughts on “The Wells, Fargo & Co. Shotgun Messenger and Give Away by Tracy Garrett”

  1. Congratulations on the release of Grace, it sounds quite good. I found your article quite interesting. Yes, I do enjoy series by more than one author. It creates an interesting take on things. Thank you for the giveaway chance.

    • Thanks, Deanne. I should warn you, though–if you decide to purchase GRACE, wait a few days. The final version didn’t upload and only chapter 1 is being sent out. I’ll put it on my facebook page when it’s fixed. Sorry.

  2. Sounds like a great read. I do enjoy reading connecting stories by different Authors. Thank you for posting.

  3. Good morning! I’ve never read one of your books but I’m a virtual newbie to the reading world. I just started reading again in November 2016 after decades of not reading. I’d love the opportunity to read one of your books and a giveaway is an awesome opportunity to find a new author to add to my go to authors list. Yes I do love a series of books that take in the same town and are written by multiple authors. It seems to me that they’d be harder to write than most books since they have to have the same area facts as well as secondary characters and such. I’m on my 210th book and would love to add yours to my read list it sounds like a great book! Welcome back and Happy New Year!

    • Good morning, Stephanie and welcome back to reading! You are correct that connected books take a lot of coordination, but it’s a fun job. As I said on an earlier comment, if you decide to purchase GRACE, wait a few days. The final version didn’t upload and only chapter 1 is being sent out. I’ll put it on my facebook page when it’s fixed. Sorry.

  4. I do enjoy reading connected books by different authors. Gives me a chance to find new to me authors—-and read some great stories.

  5. Goodmorning Tracy. I try to read all books written in a series. Love how stories and relationships evolve. I think Wildcat Ridge series would be an awesome read. Thank you for your blog today. Was fun to read.

    • Thank you, Debra. It’s nice to be back. I enjoy connected books, too. Writing one was a challenge, but fun.

  6. I love connected books by several authors. It gives a chance to experience different takes on a connected story or sometimes a whole new set of stories rolled into one.

  7. Yes I do enjoy reading connected books and by being by different authors you get to try different authors work at the same time. I love trying new authors to me and its a great way to do that.

    • Hello, Quilt Lady! Nice to ‘see’ you again. That’s why I’ve always like connected stories and anthologies. I might pick it up because of a favorite author and I get to try new to me authors, too.

  8. Welcome back, Tracy! It’s so wonderful to have you back with us like old times!

    Readers love connected books. Authors love them, too. Facebook is full of readers groups dedicated to a certain series, and it’s a great opportunity for authors to promote their book to readers already immersed in the series, and it’s a great opportunity for readers to learn about each successive book as the series grows.

    P & P readers, Tracy’s GRACE and my ELEANORA are sisters, which made writing our books even more fun. Tracy and I enjoyed the challenge of making our stories fit each other’s, and I think you’ll all enjoy GRACE and ELEANORA’S connection!

    Great blog, Tracy!

    • Hi, Pam! *hug* I had such fun writing the sisters with you. Thanks for welcoming me back. I’ve really missed P&P and my filly sisters.

  9. Welcome back Tracy. Wow this is some really interesting info about these men. Thanks for sharing.
    Thanks for doing the research. This is such a lovely cover. I would love to read your series.

  10. Hi Tracy! Great to have you back! I’ve really missed you but I’ve been hearing good things about what you’ve been doing. Writing for this Wildcat Ridge series is exciting. Such a great premise. I like stories where the characters have to start over–either by an accident or by failing. Your story sounds so good! I’m reading Pam’s now and I didn’t realize you were writing about sisters. Excellent! When I finish hers I’ll move right into yours.

    I watched Tales of Wells Fargo when I was young and I loved Dale Robertson. Oh man, he was so good looking and I loved the way he talked! I didn’t realize Michael Landon was in an episode but I’m not surprised.

    Wishing you tons and tons of good luck with this!

    Big hugs!

    • Linda!!! You’re so sweet. I discovered Tales of Wells Fargo as I researched for Benjamin Sloane. So many great western actors were in an episode, it was hard not to binge watch them all.

  11. Tracy,
    I can’t wait to dig in to your story. It’s been great fun writing in this series with you!

  12. Right back at you, Kristy! The Widows of Wildcat Ridge have developed into a very interesting bunch of characters and wonderful stories. I’ve enjoyed being part of it all.

  13. I have read several series of connected books written by various authors. What I like about them is you see the place (if all in the same place), situation, and people from various viewpoints. Each author adds her own twist and flavor to the story line. One character may see a a location as dismal and unwelcoming, while another sees the beauty and possibilities in the same place.
    This sounds like a wonderful series and Grace sounds like a woman we will enjoy getting to know. I hope the series does well.

  14. Yes, I do and I am always amazed at how the different authors can maintain the concept. Grace sounds like a wonderful book!

  15. Yes, I do. Different characters and styles but a common thread can be really interesting. And what an interesting topic for your post and GRACE. I am currently reading a great book my husband gave me for Christmas – Shotguns and Stagecoaches, The Brave Men Who Rode for Wells Fargo in the Old West by John Boessenecker. Fascinating.

    Thanks for the giveaway.

  16. Yes, I do. I enjoy learning about unfamiliar authors and of course reading more from my favorites. Plus,the interconnected characters become like old friends as they reappear in the series.

    • Agreed, Alisa. I find myself rereading a series often, because I like how the returning characters become so familiar.

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