Colorado history is rife with interesting people and places, times and events, but the mining era produced some of the most uniquely fascinating public figures of interest. Baby Doe Tabor is one of those public figures whose rise to fame—and fall into disgrace—came as much from her shockingly scandalous behavior as her breathtaking beauty.
Over the course of Baby Doe’s existence and into the many decades since her passing, the neverending fondness for juicy gossip has brought many a cruel enthusiast out of the woodwork to tell her story with or without a hint of verity. Baby Doe’s first husband brought her out to Colorado to work the mining operation his father had given him, and this is when her life began to churn the interest of gossiping locals and single men.
Baby Doe was a true beauty, remarkably so, and the contrasts she regularly posed by parading around in men’s pants and working the mine were a source of intrigue. The other miners knew her, respected her, and even lusted after the amazingly feminine persona she always managed to exude. But it was her divorce and the subsequent adulterous interactions with married men that began tarnishing her name among the local women.
In Silver City, the big, bad Mr. Tabor was making his name as the Silver King while his voluminous coffers continued to grow. He was not only wealthy but a force to be reckoned with as leader of
the town. His dominating presence was also gaining girth in other areas of Colorado, and Tabor’s big dreams of power and wealth seemed a certainty.
The scandalous stories that today’s world craves like addicts are nothing compared to the lifetime of luscious jaw-dropping gossip this family seemed to ooze for the media and the snooty aristocracy of their peers. These many tales that would even make today’s top headlines are why the attempts
at writing Baby Doe’s biography have been so plentiful. As the years of her life
accumulated, the weight of it all bore down upon her, making her a strange recluse and the only living person to know the truth behind the mystery and scandal surrounding the Tabor family.
Not until recently have all the written works of Baby Doe Tabor emerged - not only publicly, but with the potential to finally set straight the many fictional biographies, books, plays, and movies based on the Tabors and the hype their lives created for the entertainment of others. Judy Nolte Temple has spent a good many dedicated years with these works and files, getting to know Baby Doe Tabor intimately as the woman she became in the face of love, loss, seclusion, and cruelty. For the first time, Baby Doe Tabor is given the respect she deserves for the strength and fight she