“…full, dashing figure …Her eyes are large, deep and bright…Her voice is very soft and sweet”. It was Josie’s mother who first recognized the girl’s talent as “an incorrigible flirt”, and used her as bait in a badger game, played in Stockton, California. A pettifogging local attorney named D.W. Perley , while in a state of undress, was caught "courting" the girl. He wrote at least one check at gunpoint. There was some quarrel over the proceeds of this venture, and shortly thereafter Josie secretly married and ran off with Frank Lawlor, an actor.
It was understandable. Where Big Jim had few social skills, Edward had an excess. Where “Big” Jim was physically blunt and crude, Edward was handsome and dashing. He was a privileged, pompous and prideful dandy, with a trophy wife and a 9 year old daughter. Josie was experienced enough to recognize that Edward was also a spendthrift and an inveterate gambler, losing a small fortune on race horses. An affair would be dangerous for them both. Josie depended on "Big" Jim for her income, and Edward was partnered with “Big” Jim in a Brooklyn oil refinery. Edward ran the place, and “Big” Jim’s Erie Railroad transported the refineries’ oil at a discount. But for reason, in 1869, the suggestion self delusion and self destruction drove Edward and Josie to began an affair - they thought behind “Big” Jim’s back.
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