Monday, January 14, 2008

The man with the badge retires

No, I'm not writing about Sheriff Mike Carona. In this case, the man with the badge is Marshall Max Lee Barlow, who's been a fixture in Knott's Berry Farm's Ghost Town for well over 30 years. For many years, he was also the manager of Ghost Town. He also served as an unofficial historian -- learning all he could about the history of "the Farm" and then passing it along to his employees and others.
I was lucky enough to spend a few afternoons talking with Max and picking his brain. I came away knowing a lot more about Knott's as well as appreciating the man himself. He's clearly a straight-shooter who expects the same from others.
The last time I was at Knott's someone told me that Max had retired, but that he still visits now and then. I wish him all the best and very much hope that our trails cross again.
Today's photo shows Marshall Max with longtime Knott's personality Chief Redfeather (aka Jim Brady) in about 1980. Notice that only the Parachute Jump ride (now gone) broke the illusion of being in an old mining town. My thanks to Max for letting me scan this and other photos from his collection.
On an unrelated note, I also wanted to update the story about Carl Karcher's death with a link to a site full of memories and comments about him. Feel free to add your own.


itsnotaplace said...

Does Marshall Max Lee Barlow want to run for Sherrif to replace Carona?


Chris Jepsen said...

I've deleted most of this thread and we're starting over. I agree with itsnotaplace, who was unhappy to see "someone post second hand hearsay...anonymously."

I don't have a problem with people disagreeing with me. But I *do* have a problem with anonymous name-calling.

outsidetheberm said...

Wise decision. Thanks, Chris.

Anonymous said...

I worked at KBF, from '87 to "91. I held two positions there, both in Ghost Town. I helped run "the Overland Gun Shoppe" for the McCoy family, & also worked for the "Ghost Town Shows" department, & did everything from robbing trains, to medicine shows, to the occaisional shoot-out in the street, to the Hanging show, during Haunt '90! I have only fond memories of Max Barlow. He was always in good spirits, & generous with not only Knott's history, but even with some of the "memorabilia", as well. In fact, given my two different jobs there, I guess that he felt obligated to draw down on me, & even take the occasional shot at me, as well! I would either return fire, or fall dead, & just watch, as he walked on past me... (I would eventually get back up, & ask the near-by kids, "Hey! Is he gone? He misses me every time!", OR, "Missed me by THAT much!", or some similar, & hopefully amusing comment.) Yeah... We had good times, & of course, i wish that they had never ended. Oh well... I will always have the memories. Best to all.
Max Barlow... R.I.P