UA Press may force Earp book author to reveal source
UA Press officials could force Glenn Boyer -ุthe author of a 1976 compilation of memoirs on Wyatt Earp - to release a manuscript that he used as a source in his best-selling book, a university attorney said yesterday.
The University of Arizona Press is reviewing its correspondence with Boyer to determine whether the author has been truthful in conversations and letters between himself and the UA.
University attorney Mike Proctor said the UA Press has yet to decide if the review will require Boyer to reveal the Clum manuscript -ุone of the book's two main sources - which has been under criticism since the first of 12 printings.
The UA Press has repeatedly defended the validity of Boyer's book, but officials said they are conducting the review of the best seller because it is up for republication.
Proctor said the UA Press is not questioning the validity of the Clum manuscript, and their review was not prompted by accusations made by individuals outside of the university.
The purpose of the review is to be able to work through any possible discrepancy that may have occurred in Boyer's correspondence with the UA Press, Proctor said.
"We're going to look through the condition of our relationships and the documents we have," he said. "It's about deciding where we go from here."
While the UA Press has made no statement about the validity of Boyer's work, his opponents claim parts of the book are fabricated.
"The UA has gotten itself a juicy little scandal," said Earp historian Allen Barra, author of "Inventing Wyatt Earp: His Life and Many Legends."
"I'm absolutely certain that the Clum manuscript does not exist," Barra said. "I'm offering $5,000 to any church or charity for any person or UA official to say they have seen the Clum manuscript."
Boyer has countered these claims with letters to Gov. Jane Hull and the Arizona Board of Regents, also claiming that he led Phoenix New Times reporter Tony Ortega astray when he wrote an article in March.
Boyer refused comment during a telephone call yesterday, and responded to a reporter's questions via fax by saying "you do not as yet know enough to ask the right questions."
He faxed an extensive statement that he said must be printed verbatim in the Arizona Daily Wildcat, adding "you may publish it in its entirety or not at all."
Whether Boyer will ever be required to present the Clum manuscript is unknown, and there is a time table which the UA Press has set for the review, Proctor said.
UA Press Director Christine Szuter could not be reached for comment yesterday.