What is Dead Man’s Hand in Poker? The Story Behind the Hand
What is the Deadman’s Hand, and how does it work? How did it come to have such a distinctive name? The hand is commonly viewed as consisting of two Aces and two Eights – AA88 – which is a superb two-pair combination. However, there is much more to this hand than meets the eye. There is a long and illustrious history behind the game, which can be traced back to the Old West. Poker has a long and illustrious history, and the narrative behind Deadman’s Hand continues to distinguish it from other forms of gambling.
He was shot to death at a poker table more than a century ago while holding that particular hand in his hands.
A legend of the American Old West and gaming history, the lawman lives on today.
See our story on the origins of the dead man’s hand for more information.
Table of Contents
Dead Man’s Hand has its origins in the saloons of the Old West. Hickok, who was born in Illinois in 1837, was a lawman, gambler, gunslinger, folklore figure, and actor who rose to prominence in the late 1800s. He spent the better part of his life engaging in gun battles with crooks and apprehending outlaws. But he also spent a significant portion of his time using his poker winnings to supplement his salary. At some point in his life, Hickok settled in Deadwood, which is located in the Black Hills of Dakota territory.
- He had intended to settle in the mining town in order to play poker and earn a life for himself.
- Card rooms were exactly what one could expect from the Old West at the time.
- An unknown gambler called Jack McCall snuck into the tavern as cards were being passed around the table and chips dropped into the hat for the winner.
- McCall drew his revolver and steadied his shot, keeping his target out of sight of the game.
- The officer, who was only 39 years old, was killed instantly.
- However, Hickok usually sat with his back to the wall in order to keep an eye on those in the room around him.
- Although the question of whether Hickok grasped that hand has been contested for years, the story and the hand’s name have remained.
- No one knows for certain why McCall committed the heinous act, but a number of theories have surfaced.
- An additional accusation was that Hickok had shot and murdered McCall’s brother, which was later proven to be false.
McCall was found not guilty by a jury of miners. Later, however, the federal authorities re-tried him and found him guilty of murder this time. On March 1, 1877, he was executed by hanging.
Dead Man’s Hand and Wild Bill in Pop Culture
In the Old West, a game of Dead Man’s Hand was popular. Lawman, gambler, gunslinger, folklore figure and actor Wild Bill Hickok was born in Illinois in 1837 and grew up in the state. Much of his life was spent engaging in gun battles with criminals and apprehending lawbreakers. A significant portion of his time was also devoted accumulating poker winnings to supplement his meagre salary. The Dakota Territory’s Deadwood, which is in the Black Hills of the Dakota Territory, was where Hickok settled later in life.
- The goal was for him to relocate to the mining town and earn a living by playing poker and other games.
- At the time, card rooms were reminiscent of what one could anticipate from the American West.
- An unknown gambler called Jack McCall sneaked into the saloon as cards were being passed around the table and chips dumped into the pot.
- When McCall was out of sight of the game, he lifted his gun and steadied his aim.
- Despite being just 39 years old, the officer died instantaneously.
- In order to keep an eye on those around him, Hickok frequently sat with his back to the wall.
- For years, historians have argued over who grasped the hand, but the story and its name have remained unchanged.
- The exact reason McCall did the heinous act is still a mystery, although there are several ideas.
- In addition, the rumor circulated that Hickok had shot and murdered McCall’s brother, which was shown to be false.
- McCall was acquitted by a jury of fellow mineworkers.
- On March 1, 1877, he was beheaded.
‘Deadwood’ and Dead Man’s Hand
Dead Man’s Hand may be traced back to the saloons of the Old West. Hickok, who was born in Illinois in 1837, was a lawman, gambler, gunslinger, folklore figure, and actor who rose to fame in the late 1800s. He spent the better part of his life battling criminals and apprehending outlaws. But he also spent a significant amount of his time using poker winnings to supplement his salary. Hickok then settled in Deadwood, which is located in the Black Hills of the Dakota region. The territory was not yet a state, and the lawman was afflicted with glaucoma and other illnesses.
- On August 2, 1876, Hickok was participating in a Five Card Stud game at Nuttal and Mann’s Saloon in Fort Smith, Arkansas.
- Most likely, there was a lot of cigar smoke in the air and a lot of whiskey being consumed.
- As he approached the bar, McCall went behind Bill so that he could not be seen.
- Bill took a direct hit in the back of the skull.
- He was allegedly holding two black Aces and two black 8s, which was a fantastic hand in this antiquated form of poker, according to reports.
- However, the only seat available was one with his back to the rest of the group.
- Wild Bill Hickock was assassinated while holding the Dead Man’s Hand in his.
- A number of them stemmed from Hickok telling McCall to stop playing until he could pay off his gambling debts just a few days earlier, which McCall saw as an insult.
With the passage of time, the hand has become synonymous with poker and a classic tale of the Old West. McCall was found not guilty by a jury of fellow miners. He was subsequently tried and convicted of murder by the federal government a second time. On March 1, 1877, he was hanged.
Dead Man’s Hand Murder from HBO’s Deadwood
The Hand of a Dead Man Deadwood on HBO has a murder on its hands. Additionally, the narrative of Dead Man’s Hand has been referenced in a variety of pop cultural allusions. Among the many options areBatman cartoons and comic books, video games, board games, novels, and more. George R.R. Martin, the creator of Game of Thrones, has even titled one of his fantasy novels Dead Man’s Hand, after a character from the show. In 2015, the music artist and DJ Kshmr released a song with the same title, which was also produced by Kshmr.
Perhaps most evocatively, a bottle of Dead Man’s Hand whiskey can be purchased for less than $30.
Dead Man’s Hand has also been used to refer to Belgian and American beers, both of which are imperial stouts, to give them their names.
All of the iconography associated with the Dead Man’s Hand harkens back to the hand’s lethal roots, including playing cards, weapons, skulls, and a gory red color.
How to Play Dead Man’s Hand
In a game of Texas Hold’em, the hand of Ace-Eight may only be considered a mediocre one. The manner in which it is played will differ depending on the player. If there are no callers in front of him, a player in late position may make a call or even raise if he is in a good position. Other players may decide to send it to the muck, especially if the guys in front of you have significant chip piles. If there is a raise in front of them, the majority of players will most likely fold A-8 based on their perceptions of these players.
- Assuming that the board fails to provide a pair of twos, a player will have no choice except to bluff or check the hand.
- However, even if an Ace strikes the table on the flop, a player remains in a state of limbo until the turn comes around.
- Areraise will leave a player in a state of uncertainty regarding whether or not to make a decision.
- A small stack may determine that it is worthwhile to take the risk of going all-in.
- They may have hoped that a hand like this would let them to take the blinds and antes.
Bluff-Catching with the Dead Man’s Hand
It might even be utilized to catch some players in a bluff at a friendly home game or even at a table in Las Vegas. In addition, players who attempt to bluff with a middle pair on a board that contains an Ace-Eight combination of some sort may find themselves in hot water. A player holding Dead Man’s Hand could be able to scoop up a large pot from an opponent holding a hand that reads 10-10, 9-9, 7-7, or 6-6, among other things.
If you hold the cards A-A-8-8 and assume that your opponent has a hand like these, or perhaps a draw, your Dead Man’s Hand is in excellent condition. It stands a good probability of winning a significant amount of chips.
The Basics of Five Card Stud
In the game of Five Card Stud that Hickok was participating in back in 1876, a pair of Aces and a pair of Eights was considered a high-value hand. Dealt in the same manner as Seven Card Stud, but with just five cards in hand, the game provided some excellent returns for such a hand. Being given two huge pairs out of a hand of only five cards was a stroke of good fortune. Hickok was most likely looking forward to a large pot — especially if they divided the pot with one Ace and one Eight in the middle.
The Fundamentals of Five-Card Stud Poker
Dead Man’s Hand Summary
The Dead Man’s Hand is one of the most well-known poker hands in the world. It harkens back to the game’s origins in the American West, and it features a real-life renowned lawman as a central character. Hickok most likely spent more time at the poker table than he did at the sheriff’s office during his stint as sheriff.
- We already know that Dead Man’s hand consists of two Aces and eights – a pair of twos. This hand was held by Wild Bill Hickok, the legendary lawman and poker player, when he was fatally shot in a poker game while holding it. The shooting took place in 1876 in the town of Deadwood, in what would become the state of South Dakota. The cards he was holding when he was shot and died were an Ace and an Eight. Wild Bill Hickok was one of the most legendary American heroes of the Old West, having served in the army, as a scout, and as a lawman. He even dabbled in show business and acting from time to time. He reminds me a little of James Bond from the Old West. He was a skilled marksman, and it is believed that he killed and captured numerous bandits throughout his tenure.
In 1979, the year the Poker Hall of Fame was established, Hickok was honored posthumously into the hall of fame. He continues to be regarded as a historical icon in the United States. Ace-Eight is an enticing hand, but it should be avoided at all costs. Hopefully, your fate will be far more fortunate than Wild Bill’s was.
FAQ – Dead Man’s Hand
- Q: What is the nature of the Dead Man’s Hand? A:Two-card stud: Aces and Eights. When “Wild Bill” Hickok was shot in the back of the head while playing a 5-card stud game in 1876, he was holding this very hand in his possession. At the table, he died in an instant. In this particular game format, a hand of this power is highly formidable. As a result, if Hickok had not been shot, there would have been a substantial pot for him to win. Q: What was Jack McCall thinking when he shot “Wild Bill” Hickok? A:No one is really certain of the actual explanation for this. There are a plethora of hypotheses, on the other hand. One of them is that Bill ordered Jack to stop playing poker until he could pay off and settle his gambling obligations with his creditors. (Perhaps Jack believed that murdering Wild Bill would assist to resolve the situation.) According to yet another story, Hickok had already shot and murdered Jack McCall’s brother. The murder was a petty act of vengeance. How could Hickok have missed the fact that Jack McCall was about to shoot him? He sat with his back against the wall in the poker games, as was customary for Hickok. This vantage point would allow him to keep an eye on the other players at the table as well as the other patrons in the tavern at any one moment. On the night he was shot, the only seat in the poker room that was accessible was one that faced away from the rest of the players. Because of this, as well as the heavy cigar smoke filling the air, Jack McCall was able to slip into the saloon. He was able to kill Wild Bill from a distance since he was hiding in the shadows and so did not draw attention to himself or his objectives. Q: What is it about Dead Man’s Hand that makes it so famous? A:Because conventional poker originated in the Wild West, this event serves as a reminder of where poker’s origins may be traced. There were little tables in saloons where the environment gave off that traditional western vibe, and this book chronicles their narrative. Death at a poker table is extremely rare, but it does happen occasionally. It is the strength of Hickok’s hand that makes this story even more astounding, considering he was shot while holding his handgun. If this had not happened, he would have most likely walked away with a sizable chunk of change. The charming character of Hickok also contributed to the story’s becoming so well-known and well-read. Stories about him as a person (as opposed to merely how he died) were handed down and popularized through the years. Q: How has this narrative managed to endure the test of time? In fact, the story of Hickok being killed at the poker table has not been passed down through the generations. It was also his character as a person that served to elevate him to the status of posthumous American hero! To begin with, he was a very proficient gunfighter, law enforcement officer, gambler, and poker player. He was also recalled as being tall and beautiful, and he was admired by a large number of female colleagues. Hunting, trapping, spying, soldiering, military scouting, and sharpshooting were among his many occupations throughout his formative years. All of this contributed to the decision by Avon Periodicals to turn Hickok into a comic book character throughout the 1950s. Other firms have produced a radio show that will run for three years and a television series that will run for seven years (“The Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok”). Most recently, Hickok’s role has been brought to life on the big screen in “The Young Raiders” television series (1989-1992), as well as in the HBO series and film “Deadwood” (2004-2006).
The Dead Man’s Hand – Articles
The Dead Man’s Hand is made of what, exactly, is not known. A:Two-card stud: Aces and Eights When “Wild Bill” Hickok was shot in the back of the head in 1876 while playing a 5-card stud game, he was holding this very hand in his possession. In front of me, he died instantaneously. In this particular game type, a hand of this strength is quite powerful. If Hickok had not been shot, there would have been a substantial pot for him to win. JACK McCALL was the man who shot “Wild Bill” Hickok. Everyone seems to disagree on the precise explanation for the situation.
- One of them is that Bill instructed Jack to stop playing poker until he could pay off and settle his gambling obligations with the gambling debt collector.
- Hickok’s brother, according to another story, was earlier shot and murdered by Hickok.
- How come Hickok couldn’t notice that Jack McCall was ready to shoot him?
- This vantage point would allow him to keep an eye on the other players at the table as well as the other patrons in the tavern at any given moment.
- With the thick cigar smoke filling the air, Jack McCall was able to slip into the tavern without being seen.
- The Dead Man’s Hand is a well-known piece of art for a reason.
- In it, you’ll learn about the little tables in saloons, where the environment exuded a traditional western atmosphere.
It is the strength of Hickok’s hand when he was shot that makes this story even more astonishing.
Because of Hickok’s endearing personality, this tale has become one of his most well-known works.
In fact, the narrative of Hickok being slain at the poker table was never handed down down the generations.
Among his many talents were his abilities as a firearms and crime-fighting expert as well as a superb gambler and card player.
Hunting, trapping, spying, soldiering, military scouting, and sharpshooting were all skills he learned in his early years.
The Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok is a seven-season TV show produced by another company that ran for three years on the radio.
Most recently, Hickok’s role has been brought to life on the big screen in “The Young Raiders” television series (1989-1992), as well as in the HBO series and film “Deadwood” (2004-2006);
@OfficialBicycleCards on Instagram
Aces and eights are the best cards. The hand of the famed dead man. How did this well-known hand come to be known by its name and, as a result, make its way into popular culture? An extremely fascinating history lesson that addresses the question “Why is the dead man’s hand aces and eights?” is provided below.
Wild Bill Hickok, aces and eights, and the birth of the dead man’s hand
It is now represented as a pair of black aces and black eights in a two-pair poker hand, despite the fact that the hand’s real composition has changed throughout the course of time. During a five-card draw game at NuttalMann’s Saloon in Deadwood, Dakota Territory, on August 2, 1876, James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickock was reputedly holding these pairs of cards, as well as an unknown kicker, when he was shot by Jack McCall. William “Wild Bill” Hickok was a frontiersman who lived in the American West.
- McCall was urged to stop for the night until he could clear his debts, and Hickok provided him with some money to spend on meals.
- After that, when McCall arrived into the saloon the next day, he stood up behind Hickok, who was reluctantly seated with his back to the door because another player, Charlie Rich, would not move seats with him, and said, “Damn you!
- Hickok perished in an instant.
- Hickok was carrying a deck of cards on that fatal day, according to Des Wilson’sGhosts at the Table(2007), and the author attempts to figure out exactly what cards he had in his hand.
- According to one tale, Hickok’s hand was the letters A an 8 a Q and included a drop of the slain gunfighter’s blood in the palm of his hand.
- And just like that, the hand of the deceased man was born.
Other mentions of the dead man’s hand
A complete house, jacks over tens, was characterized as the dead man’s hand in 1886, which was the first time it was ever mentioned in print. This hand is known as the dead man’s hand because it was gambled on by a prominent judge in an Illinois town around forty years ago. The judge risked his house and lot on three jacks and two tens and lost. It was the last piece of real estate he owned anywhere in the globe. The dead man’s hand, according to the Encyclopaedia of Superstitions, Folklore, and the Occult Sciences(1903), is made up of jacks and sevens.
Contrary to popular belief, the attribution of the deceased’s hand to Hickok did not occur until the 1920s, when it was ultimately codified in poker parlance as a pair of aces and a pair of eights, owing to the book Wild Bill Hickok: The Prince of Pistoleers by Frank Wilstach (1926).
The dead man’s hand appears in a slew of songs, television episodes, movies, literary fiction, and video games, among other places. The following are some of the most popular:
- Agent Jezzie Flanagan, in James Patterson’s novel Along Came a Spider, uses the numbers aces and eights (aces eights) as her computer password and tells a narrative about how her father won a handcrafted Turkish rifle with his hand in the novel
- In Ken Kesey’s novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, the protagonist Randle McMurphy has a tattoo of a dead man’s hand on his shoulder
- This is a reference to the novel’s title. Several characters in two John Ford films—Stagecoach (1939) and The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962)—are seen clutching the hand of a deceased man. Some of the most well-known bands and musicians of our time, such as Motorhead, Bob Dylan, Ha Ha Tonka, Bob Seger, Lita Ford, Blue Oyster Cult, Michael McDermott, The Church, and KSHMR, use some variation of aces and eights in their songs. Popular video games such as Fallout: New Vegas andHearthstone make use of the dead man’s hand as a plot device. Doomtown, a collectable card game, has the aces and eights as playable characters. In actuality, the maximum conceivable rank is aces and eights with the J
- This is the highest possible rank. A dust-covered dead man’s hand may be seen in the foyer of Disneyland Paris’Twilight ZoneTower of Terror
- The hand is a replica of a real one.
It is also common to see the hand of a deceased person in logos, insignias, and tattoo designs. For example, the hand is used in the insignia of the Homicide Division of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD). And there you have it: a brief historical introduction to the hand of a dead man, as well as our current and ongoing fascination with the aces and eights. Do you have an amazing story about a dead man’s hand or aces and eights? Please share your thoughts in the comments section.
Until we meet again.
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The Legend of the Dead Man’s Hand
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Wild Bill Hickok
First and foremost, let me to introduce you to Wild Bill Hickok, the legendary gunfighter and gambler who serves as the central character of our narrative (1837-1876). Originally, his given name was James Butler Hickok, but when you’re a famous gunfighter in the Wild West, “James” doesn’t seem quite as spectacular, so “Wild Bill” was adopted instead. Apparently, his big nose and huge lips earned him the nickname “Duck Bill” when he was younger, but the addition of a ferocious moustache and a reputation for being a little crazy led to the title Wild Bill being adopted.
Because of his involvement in several shootouts, the iron fist with which he dominated the lawlessness of his day, and his talent as a professional gambler, he gained widespread respect in the community.
His adventures were frequently sensationalized, with fiction and reality being mixed together.
A reputable biographer thinks that the true number is closer to a half-dozen, but other journalists from his day said that it was more than a hundred.
The Death of Wild Bill
Take a little trip back in time to 1876, when Wild Bill is about 40 years old. By this point, he has amassed a substantial sum of money from his gambling and other endeavors. However, he is no longer nearly the crack shooter that he was in his earlier years, and his health is also beginning to deteriorate. Wild Bill boards a wagon train bound for South Dakota, where he eventually lands in the town of Deadwood. At the nearby NuttalMann’s Saloon No. 10, he indulges in one of his big passions: poker, which he enjoys tremendously.
- When it comes to Buffalo Bill, one of the unlucky losers is a drunken buffalo hunter by the name of Jack McCall, who suffers such severe losses that he is forced to depend on Wild Bill’s kindness in order to purchase breakfast.
- The next day, on August 2, 1876, Wild Bill returns to the bar for another round of poker with his buddies.
- As a result, Wild Bill is taken completely by surprise when Jack McCall walks into the saloon and exclaims at him “You’ve been damned!
- “, and then shoots him in the back of the head at point blank range.
- He has two pairs of black Aces and two pairs of black Eights on his table.
- The legend of Wild Bill’s final hand, on the other hand, would live on.
The legend of the Dead Man’s Hand began with this event.
The Dead Man’s Hand
And, more importantly, did Wild Bill truly have a pair of Aces and a pair of Eights in his hands? According to some historians, this tale is not historically accurate. A book on Wild Bill Hickok was published some fifty years later, and it has been hypothesized that the association between Wild Bill and this specific hand became well known only after this. As of that point, the story had already turned into a legend, and the publishing of this account undoubtedly contributed to the spread of the legend.
- In fact, at one point during the nineteenth century, the narrative of a Dead Man’s Hand was supposed to be associated with an entirely different man, as well as a completely other deck of cards.
- Wild Bill’s hand at the time of his death may or may not have been authentic, but there’s no denying that his story has become the stuff of legend.
- A lot has been written about this specific hand, and it has appeared in innumerable novels, films, and even computer games, thus it has firmly established itself in popular culture.
- Among the items on display are a historical exhibit of the Dead Man’s Hand, as well as signage that explain the legend around it.
The Dead Man’s Deck
A customized deck of playing cards has been created by Vanishing Inc Magic to pay tribute to this story in a unique and personal way. Designed for collectors, it pays tribute to Wild Bill and his tragic demise in a limited edition deck. Tuck box is straightforward and somber in appearance, with subdued black and yellowed borders, which gives it the appearance of being a true antique relic from bygone days. Get ready for a pleasant surprise when you take the cards out of the box, since the entire deck has a hole that actually runs through the centre of each and every card, creating a really amusing novelty appearance for the whole deck to enjoy.
- In addition, burn scars surround the bullet hole on both sides of each card, giving the cards a purposely aged and worn appearance.
- Because the backs of the cards are identical, you may still use this as a standard deck if you so want.
- When it comes to the face cards, they are designed in a vintage manner, and when it comes to the court cards, they are designed in an earlier French style rather than the traditional Bicycle form that we are used to seeing today, including the usage of indices on all four corners.
- Expert Playing Card Company handled the printing of the deck, which resulted in cards that are both visually appealing and playably smooth.
- You could absolutely include it into a card trick with a Wild West theme, and it would be particularly appealing to magicians who perform gambling routines.
Of course, you could also use it for a game of poker or any other type of card game if you so desired. It also serves as an excellent conversation starter and collector’s item. Just remember to keep your back to the wall at all times!
Where to get it?The Dead Man’s Deck is available at PlayingCardDeckshere.
EndersGame is a well-known and respected reviewer of board games and playing cards who has written for a variety of publications. The card games, card magicianry, card collecting, and other forms of card entertainment are among his favorite pastimes. He has evaluated several hundred board games as well as hundreds of various decks of playing cards. See a complete list of his game reviews here, and a list of his playing card reviews here for more information. He is widely regarded as an authority on playing cards, having written extensively about their design, history, and function.
You can read some of his previous articles on playing cards by clicking here.
Date of most recent update: 2/03/21
What is the Dead Man’s Hand?
EndersGame is a well-known and respected reviewer of board games and playing cards who has written for a number of publications. The card games, card magicianry, card collecting, and other forms of card entertainment are among his favorite pastimes. He has evaluated several hundred board games as well as dozens of various decks of playing cards. See his whole set of game reviews here, as well as his reviews of playing cards here. A recognized expert on playing cards, he has written extensively about their design, history, and function.
Here are some of his earlier articles on the subject of playing cards.
Updated on March 2nd, 2019.
Where the Dead Man’s Hand Comes From
“Wild Bill” Hickok was assassinated while holding the hand of the deceased – Casino.com According to legend, the moniker “Wild Bill” Hickok was given to the town when he was killed by lawman and gambler James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok in 1876. Jack “Crooked Nose” McCall, a local drinker from Deadwood, South Dakota, was responsible for his death. According to reports, after joining a poker table with Hickok, he ended up losing every last cent he had. After giving him some money to spend on meals, Hickock counseled him to refrain from participating in any further games until he could afford to make up for his losses.
McCall was enraged when he entered the tavern the next day and discovered Hickok playing poker once more.
McCall is said to have approached Hickok from behind and said, “Damn you!
Hickok died quickly, and McCall was put to death by the state seven months after Hickok’s execution. Despite the fact that the Dead Man’s Hand 5 thcard is not mentioned, most stories state that Hickok’s hand at the time consisted of black aces and eights.
How Worthwhile is a Dead Man’s Hand in Poker?
While the Dead Man’s Hand may have a great deal of psychological and historical significance, it is not a very valuable hand in terms of money. While a two-pair is not a poor poker hand, it is certainly not as valuable as a royal flush, straight flush, or full house in most situations. The fact that you have been dealt a Dead Man’s Hand is always interesting, but it has no effect on your odds of winning or losing. Of course, the true worth of this hand is derived from the perception of this hand.
Aces and Eights – Dead Man’s Hand in Popular Culture
Many artists have gotten inspiration from the Dead Man’s Hand, which is often depicted as an ominous harbinger of impending catastrophe by the media. What could be more ominous or dreadful than a character being dealt the Dead Man’s Hand as a symbol of impending doom or foreshadowing? The phrase is frequently picked up on by poker players, who interpret it as a warning of impending death or at the very least an unpleasant surprise in the future. In written fiction, it may be found in a number of different works.
- In Ken Kesey’s novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, McMurphy is described as having a tattoo of a Dead Man’s Hand on his shoulder, which has been interpreted in a variety of ways.
- Image courtesy of Flickr user ajbrown, which is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.
- The hand is held by Luke Plummer before he is shot by the Ringo Kid, who is played by John Wayne in the film Stagecoach.
- It has also been used in television show episodes, either as the title of episodes in which characters are about to die or to show opportunities for characters to avoid death in some way.
- As the convict believes, Hotch should have a Dead Man’s Hand, Hotch asserts that he does indeed possess one.
- In fact, this renowned hand is used in video games as well as other media.
- Players can gather cards that make up the Dead Man’s Hand in order to get an accomplishment by doing so.
It may also be found in games like asHearthstone, Werewolf: The Apocalypse, Wing Commander IV, and Need for Speed: Carbon. However, it is most popular in the field of music. The following are examples of songs that make reference to the Dead Man’s Hand:
- Ace Of Spades– Motörhead
- Rambling, Gambling Willie– Bob Dylan
- AcesEights– Uncle Kracker
- Alligator Blood– Bring Me the Horizon
- I Am The Storm– Blue Oyster Cult
- Dead Man’s Hand– Moonshine Bandits
- Ace Of Spades– Motörhead
- AcesEights– Michael McDermott
- AcesEights– Michael McDer
There are new Wild West-themed television programs being broadcast, and there are even more references to the Dead Man’s Hand being made, so it’s evident that the legend will linger on for years to come. Now that you’re familiar with the Dead Man’s Hand, it’s time to brush up on your knowledge of all the other poker hands slang. Image courtesy of Casino.org Sources:
Why Aces And Eights Are Called A Dead Man’s Hand
Dead Man’s Hand is a pair of aces and an eight. The following is the source: (pixels.com) Aside from the opportunity to win large sums of money, one of the attractions of the game of poker is the fact that it is full with intricacies and backstories. One of them has anything to do with the Hand of the Dead. When Wild Bill Hickock was shot at a poker table while holding this exact hand of cards, it was given the moniker “Black Aces and Eights.” This particular combination of cards, which contained two black aces and two black eights, has its roots in the old west.
The theatrical film LITTLE BIG MAN, which was first released on December 23, 1970, starred Jeff Corey in the role of Wild Bill Hickok.
Who was Wild Bill Hickok?
Wild Bill was a colorful figure in the old west, and he was one of the more colorful characters. However, although he is widely regarded as an American folk hero, he was a genuine, flesh-and-blood individual who just happened to lead an adventurous life. James Butler Hickok, who was born in Illinois, was drawn to the western frontier as a young man. The lawman and gambler who became known as “Wild Bill” Hickok had a varied career that included stints as a wagon master, a cattle driver, a gunfighter, a spy, and an actor among his many other roles.
He worked on both sides of the law and was the hero of multiple shootouts during his tenure in the military.
The following is the source: (deadwood.com)
Poker in Deadwood
If you’re looking for a colorful figure from the old west, go no farther than Wild Bill. However, although he is often regarded as an American folk hero, he was a genuine, flesh-and-blood individual who simply happened to have an eventful life. Hickok was captivated to the western frontier as a child growing up in Illinois. The lawman and gambler who became known as “Wild Bill” Hickok had a varied career that included stints as a wagon master, a cattle driver, a gunfighter, a spy, and an actor among other occupations.
He worked on both sides of the law and was the hero of multiple shootouts throughout his stint in the industry.
This information was obtained from the following: (deadwood.com)
No Good Deed Goes Unpunished
Jack McCall was displeased, but he lacked the financial means to continue playing poker, and he was obliged to leave the poker table. McCall accepted Wild Bill Hickok’s offer of money so that he could go out and have some breakfast. However, the more McCall thought about it, the more he felt enraged. He eventually took the money. He was disgusted at Hickok for having the audacity to steal his money at the poker table and then use that money to give him a handout later on.
It was considered humiliating to be offered charity in the wild, wild west. The fact that McCall thought Hickok had humiliated and shamed him motivated him to avenge himself. The following is the source: (truewestmagazine.com)
Hickok’s Unlucky Day
Wild Bill Hickok was back at the bar bright and early the next morning, this time seeking for a seat at the poker tables. As a former gunfighter and a former sheriff, Hickok understood the need of being aware of one’s surroundings in addition to one’s own actions. He like to sit at a table with his back against the wall so that he could see through to the doorway. However, on this particular day, the only seat available was one that faced away from the entrance. Rick declined to exchange seats with Hickok when he requested another poker player, a man called Charles Rich, to do so.
Hickok saw it as a sign that he would lose at poker the next day, and he was correct.
Just a few days before, he had confided in his buddy Charlie Utter about his fears that he might perish in Deadwood.
The following is the source: (factinate.com)
McCall Gets His Revenge
Wild While entering the saloon and approaching his table, Bill Hickok was unable to see Jack McCall, who was sitting across from him. The Colt Model 1873 Single Action Army.45 revolver that McCall was holding directly behind Hickok was aimed at the back of Hickok’s head as he stood directly behind him. “You’re a jerk!” McCall screamed. Take that!” he said, firing a single shot at Hickok from point blank range. Hickok was dispatched in an instant. In addition to hitting him in the wrist, the bullet penetrated his brain and exited through his face, injuring another poker player, a riverboat captain named William Massie.
The Dead Man’s Hand
In the midst of a poker game, while Wild Bill Hickok’s body lay slumped over the table, another player, Neil Christy, collected Hickok’s playing cards off the floor and laid them out on the table. He held up the ace of diamonds, the ace of clubs, both black eights, as well as the queen of hearts, which had a smear of Hickok’s blood on the back of it. Other accounts claimed that Hickok’s hand contained both black aces and both black eights, as well as the queen of hearts, but historians believe that the suit of the ace of diamonds was changed to the suit of the ace of spades because the ace of spades has long been associated with the death of a person.
The Dead Man’s Hand became well-known in the world of poker very soon. Poker players who are dealt an ace and an eight are eager to check over their shoulders to see whether death is coming for them, much like Wild Bill Hickok did in the old west while holding this hand.
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Karen, a writer, departed the realm of academia, abandoning her position as a college lecturer to devote her time solely to writing.
During the day, she lives on a hobby farm with her fireman husband and four kids, where they have a variety of animals, including a goat named Atticus, a turkey named Gravy, and a chicken named Chickaletta, among others.
Dead Man Hand Dictionary Entry
The dead man’s hand, commonly known as the “aces and eights,” is a poker hand that consists of a pair of aces and a pair of eights in a single poker hand game. Although many poker players refer to any hand that has aces and eights as a dead man’s hand, the term really comes from the game of five-card stud. A real dead man’s hand consists of five cards, but the fifth and final card is completely insignificant in the scheme of things. The following tale explains the origin of this phrase and how it is used: On August 2, 1876, Will Bill Kickok was gunned down in Saloon No.
- He was holding an ace and an eight when he was killed.
- In contrast, the hand of a deceased person can be of any suite, even many suits.
- There are others who believe that Wild Bill was killed before the fifth card was dealt, and hence there was no fifth card.
- However, this is not the case, and the hand is actually extremely excellent, and it is frequently a winner.
- The HBO series Deadwood, which starred Wild Bill Hickok, incorporated the hand’s mythos into its plot.
- Return to the -Poker Dictionary page.
What is the Dead Man’s Hand in Poker?
Poker is, without a doubt, the most popular card game in the world! However, despite the fact that this card game is one of the most well-known, it may be difficult to master. There are several terminology, with the Dead Man’s Hand being one of the most difficult to understand. Let’s take a closer look at this phrase to find out what it means in this context.
What is the Dead Man’s Hand in Poker?
Poker is, without a doubt, the most popular card game in the whole globe. However, despite the fact that this card game is one of the most well-known, it may be challenging to master. Although there are other terms, the Dead Man’s Hand is one of the most perplexing of them all. Let’s take a closer look at this phrase to find out what it implies in this situation.
The Story Behind The Dead Man’s Hand
Wild Bill Hickok is said to have held these four cards in his Dead Man’s Hand, according to the tale that surrounds the deck. True to his name, Wild Bill was born James Butler Hickok, who went on to become a well-known folk hero of the American Old West. Throughout his life, the guy had a variety of professions, including soldier, scout, and law enforcement officer. Another theory is that he told many outrageous stories about himself, which helped him to gain a very bad reputation in the process.
- Although we cannot be certain, we can speculate on how this relates to the Dead Man’s Hand.
- Not surprisingly, he was engaged in five-card stud (which is similar to seven-card stud) rather than traditional poker games.
- These four cards are frequently shown in television shows and movies as a sign of impending doom and gloom.
- A common misconception among new poker players is that the cards have a low value due of their reputation and brand name, which is inaccurate.
However, this is not entirely true, because two pairs is a respectable starting hand. As you can see, the narrative of the Dead Man’s Hand is both fascinating and vivid! If you get it again, don’t panic unless you’re at a Wild West saloon, in which case you should be alarmed.
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dead man’s hand – Wiktionary
The use of aces and eights comes from a mythology that Wild Bill Hickok was carrying such cards at the time of his death in 1876, according to which he was slain.
- A player’s hand contains aces and eights (particularly the black aces and eights), and this is known as a pair of aces and eights.
- A player’s hand contains aces and eights (particularly the black aces and eights), and this is known as a pair of aces and eights in poker.
- Other varied hands, including a complete houseof three jacks and two tens, are used as beginning hands in Texas hold ’em. (poker,obsolete)
- Cora Linn Morrison Daniels and Charles McClellan Stevens, editors, Encyclopaedia of Superstitions, Folklore, and the Occult Sciences of the World, volume 3, J. H. Yewdale, page 1478: In 1903, Cora Linn Morrison Daniels and Charles McClellan Stevens, editors, Encyclopaedia of Superstitions, Folklore, and the Occult Sciences of the World, volume 3, J. H In the game of poker, if you have the jack full of red sevens, you get what is known as the “dead man’s hand” since it spells death.
- Cora Linn Morrison Daniels and Charles McClellan Stevens, editors, Encyclopaedia of Superstitions, Folklore, and the Occult Sciences of the World, volume 3, J. H. Yewdale, page 1478: In 1903, Cora Linn Morrison Daniels and Charles McClellan Stevens, editors, Encyclopedia of Superstitions, Folklore, and the Occult Sciences of the World, volume 3, J. H. Yewdale, A jack full on red sevens is considered to be a death hand in poker and so the term “dead man’s hand” is used to describe the situation
- Michael Weisenberg is the author of this work (2000) Michael G. Isenberg/Mike Caro University, The Official Dictionary of Poker (MGI/Mike Caro University, ISBN
Dead Man’s Hand – The Real Story
The dead man’s hand is a term used to refer to a certain poker hand consisting of two pairs of black eights and two pairs of black aces, respectively. The definitions have continued to vary throughout the years, as has the terminology. Wild Bill Hickok, a legendary gunfighter and lawman of the Old West reputedly held this card hand at the time of his death. A course of this card hand has not been recorded in current literature, although there is a course of this card hand recorded in an old book written by Frank Wilstach in 1926 titledWild Bill Hickok: The Prince of Pistoleers.
- It is possible that the cards in the instance of Will Hickok were a mix of his own and another nameless hole card hand.
- However, it wasn’t until the latter half of the 1920s that the hand was linked to Hickok.
- Several 1903 books, including Encyclopedia of Superstitions, the Occult Sciences, and Folklore, allude to the number seven and the number jack as the dead man’s hand.
- Interestingly, the term that is now known as the dead man’s hand comes from a mythology about Hickok, who was also known as Wild Bill Hickok, who was said to have held a five-card stud hand while on the run.
- NuttalMann’s Saloon in Deadwood, Dakota Territory, was the scene of this homicide.
- According to Carl W.
- When Mr.
It is thought that Hickok’s blood is present in the sample.
Nonetheless, he went on to say that there is no contemporaneous source that has the exact same handwriting as the one in question.
Wild Bill Hickok: The Prince of Pistoleers, a 1926 publication by Frank Wilstach, was the first time the character appeared on the page.
It is important to note that, in addition to poker players, the dead man’s hand is also utilized as an emblem by a couple of military organizations in their insignia.
In addition to this, the western-themed card game collection Doomtown elevates the hand to the top of the leaderboard in its own game.
In addition, the first fragment of The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, a film produced by the Coen Brothers, includes a shot of the dead man’s hand.
The seat in question belongs to someone who was dealt the dead man’s hand before he left the table in the first place. As a result, he declines to participate in the game. Ace of Spades, the title tune by Motorhead, also features the hand as a part of its visual motif.
Dead Man’s Hand in Poker
Wild Bill’s kicker, according to some tales of the famed dead man’s hand, was the queen of clubs, not the king of clubs. This perception, on the other hand, has been the subject of numerous debates. Many people believe that Wild Bill Hickok was shot before he could deal the fifth card in the game, and that this is why there was no fifth card in play. Because of the bad memories that the hand has engendered, many new players and others who do not regularly participate in the game believe that the dead man’s hand is of extremely low worth.
This is a very good hand, and it is generally a winner at the poker table.
Nonetheless, the dead man’s hand is frequently used in popular American culture to signify a variety of things, including ill luck, death, and omens of doom.
It is frequently used to indicate that a character holding the hand is about to die.