Holly Hall and Jeremiah Small were an unlikely couple. But a couple they were, and this is their tale. Holly was the only child of a Wyoming rancher and having no brothers she grew up riding, roping, and the like. She wore a stetson hat and leather chaps, and never was without a six-gun on her side. Yes, she could shoot, swear, and drink with the ranch hands as their equal.
Jeremiah was a sophisticated seminary graduate from some place back east, some way out Massachusetts way. He took it into his mind that he was going to go west and bring the gospel to the Cheyenne and Arapaho. He found that preaching slow and loud in English didn’t have much success, however, and not being much for languages he decided to adjust his aspirations.
It was this that brought him to the township of New Prospect. He was sure he would leave his mark of the gospel on that place. After settling into the boarding house, the young preacher made his way to the saloon. As he entered he noted a young cowpuncher propping up the bar knocking back Red Eye. Jeremiah decided he would go and spread the good news of temperance to the lad. He approached the bar and ordered himself a sarsaparilla only to notice that the buckaroo was no teenage boy but a woman of about twenty-four years of age. He nevertheless began his sermonising on drink.
She looked at his, then replied, “Jesus turned water into wine; and the book condemns drunkenness not drinking.” The preacher looked back, amazed and agreeing, he beat a retreat.
The next day he again saw her playing cards in the saloon. He went to condemn her gambling. She noted that the Apostles cast lots to secure a replacement for Judas. Well, these daily debates went on for a time, and then debates turned to conversations, and the conversations into courting. Before long a wedding was being planned.
The day finally arrived and the whole community gathered at the courthouse. Jeremiah was dressed in a black suit with a clerical collar, and everyone was surprised to see Holly show up in her momma’s wedding dress, and with no shooting iron. After a brief ceremony, Judge Carmichael pronounced them man and wife. It was now time for honeymooning. It was on their wedding night that the cowgirl and the missionary had their first real dispute.