John Henry Holliday is best known for his friendship with Wyatt Earp and his gambling and gun fighting practices in the Wild West. He is less well known for having graduated from dental school and having a dental practice in Atlanta, Georgia. When he was diagnosed with tuberculosis, he thought he needed a different climate if he was going to live. His mother had died of TB when he was fifteen and he did not want to have his life cut short like his mother had. His mother’s death took a toll on John. To work through his grief, he studied long and hard. He graduated from dental school in Philadelphia in 1872.

He traveled for a while and became friends with Wyatt Earp and some of his family members. In 1880, he moved to Tombstone to be near his friend Earp and fought alongside him. His friendship with Earp got him involved in the now famous shoot-out at the OK-Corral. During the gunfight, several men were killed and several were wounded. Doc Holliday was one of them who sustained a gunshot wound.

When Wyatt Earp’s brother, Morgan Earp, was killed, a feud began between Wyatt Earp and his brother’s killers. Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp rode for years in the name of this feud. During that time, many killings took place.

John “Doc” Holiday succumbed to TB at a hotel in Glenwood, Colorado. He had separated from Wyatt Earp by then because his health was failing him. He died on November 8, 1887.

Facts about Doc Holliday

Real Name

John Henry Holliday


The Deadly Dentist


August 14, 1851, in Griffin, Ga.


November 8, 1887, in Glenwood Spring, Colo.

Cause of Death


Verified kills