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 Carlotta J. “Lottie Deno” <I>Thompkins</I> Thurmond

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Carlotta J. “Lottie Deno” Thompkins Thurmond

Birth
Warsaw, Gallatin County, Kentucky, USA
Death
9 Feb 1934 (aged 89)
New Mexico, USA
Burial
Deming, Luna County, New Mexico, USA
Plot
KoP section, Row C, Lot 2
Memorial ID
14303628 View Source

Lottie Deno, known also at various times as Carlotta J. Thompkins, Charlotte Tompkins, and Charlotte Thurmond. She came from a wealthy family. Her father loved to gamble, raised racehorses, and traded in crops grown on the plantation. After her father was killed in the Civil War,Lottie's mother and sister were forced to manage the family plantation. To ensure their future security they sent Lottie to Detroit at the age of eighteen to find a husband of the right social standing. In Detroit Lottie met Johnny Golden, a jockey who had ridden for Lottie's father. Knowing Lottie was versed in gambling, Johnny encouraged Lottoe to gamble on the Ohio and Mississippi River. Lottie and Johnny traveled the rivers during the Civil War. In 1863 the two split. During that time, Lottie became a house gambler at the University Club in Texas, where she worked for the Thurmond family, from Georgia.

She met and fell in love with Frank Thurmond. Lottie was known in San Antonio as the "Angel of San Antonio." Later in 1869 Johnny arrived claiming that Lottie was his wife, but Lottie denied the assertion. Frank went to West Texas after supposedly killing a man in an altercation during a game. Soon Lottie followed to find him, leaving behind Johnny and Mary. She gambled her way around West Texas-Fort Concho, Jacksboro, San Angelo, Denison, and Fort Worth-and eventually moved to Fort Griffin.

In Ft. Concho, Lottie had been called 'Mystic Maud." It was in Fort Griffin that she began to call herself Lottie Deno. Her new name supposedly came from a card game where she was suspected of cheating; one player suggested she should call herself "Lotta Dinero."

Lottie's gambling opponents included Doc Holliday and other well-known western figures. She left Griffin in May 1877 to join Frank in Kingston, New Mexico. There she and Frank ran a small gambling room on the rear of the Victorio Hotel. Later Lottie owned the Broadway Restaurant in Silver City. On December 2, 1880, in Silver City, New Mexico, Lottie and Frank were married.

From 1882 until Lottie's died, she and Frank lived in Deming, New Mexico, as respected citizens. Frank became a miner, then dealt in land sales and eventually became vice president of the Deming National Bank. Lottie, who was always said to be a lady, always worn the finest clothing and practiced the best manners. She gave up gambling and became a founding member of St. Luke's Episcopal Church of Deming. She died on February 9, 1934, and is buried in Deming next to Frank.

Lottie is immortalized as the basis for Gunsmoke's character, "Miss Kitty".

Info condensed from The Texas State Historical Association.

Lottie Deno, known also at various times as Carlotta J. Thompkins, Charlotte Tompkins, and Charlotte Thurmond. She came from a wealthy family. Her father loved to gamble, raised racehorses, and traded in crops grown on the plantation. After her father was killed in the Civil War,Lottie's mother and sister were forced to manage the family plantation. To ensure their future security they sent Lottie to Detroit at the age of eighteen to find a husband of the right social standing. In Detroit Lottie met Johnny Golden, a jockey who had ridden for Lottie's father. Knowing Lottie was versed in gambling, Johnny encouraged Lottoe to gamble on the Ohio and Mississippi River. Lottie and Johnny traveled the rivers during the Civil War. In 1863 the two split. During that time, Lottie became a house gambler at the University Club in Texas, where she worked for the Thurmond family, from Georgia.

She met and fell in love with Frank Thurmond. Lottie was known in San Antonio as the "Angel of San Antonio." Later in 1869 Johnny arrived claiming that Lottie was his wife, but Lottie denied the assertion. Frank went to West Texas after supposedly killing a man in an altercation during a game. Soon Lottie followed to find him, leaving behind Johnny and Mary. She gambled her way around West Texas-Fort Concho, Jacksboro, San Angelo, Denison, and Fort Worth-and eventually moved to Fort Griffin.

In Ft. Concho, Lottie had been called 'Mystic Maud." It was in Fort Griffin that she began to call herself Lottie Deno. Her new name supposedly came from a card game where she was suspected of cheating; one player suggested she should call herself "Lotta Dinero."

Lottie's gambling opponents included Doc Holliday and other well-known western figures. She left Griffin in May 1877 to join Frank in Kingston, New Mexico. There she and Frank ran a small gambling room on the rear of the Victorio Hotel. Later Lottie owned the Broadway Restaurant in Silver City. On December 2, 1880, in Silver City, New Mexico, Lottie and Frank were married.

From 1882 until Lottie's died, she and Frank lived in Deming, New Mexico, as respected citizens. Frank became a miner, then dealt in land sales and eventually became vice president of the Deming National Bank. Lottie, who was always said to be a lady, always worn the finest clothing and practiced the best manners. She gave up gambling and became a founding member of St. Luke's Episcopal Church of Deming. She died on February 9, 1934, and is buried in Deming next to Frank.

Lottie is immortalized as the basis for Gunsmoke's character, "Miss Kitty".

Info condensed from The Texas State Historical Association.


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  • Created by: Angel M. Brant
  • Added: 16 May 2006
  • Find a Grave Memorial ID: 14303628
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/14303628/carlotta-j-thurmond: accessed ), memorial page for Carlotta J. “Lottie Deno” Thompkins Thurmond (21 Apr 1844–9 Feb 1934), Find a Grave Memorial ID 14303628, citing Mountain View Cemetery, Deming, Luna County, New Mexico, USA; Maintained by Angel M. Brant (contributor 46529339) .