Provided you are not armed, entry into the bank can be effected without exchange by dropping into the Chamber of Commerce and asking for admission. It was here on October 5, 1892, that frightened tellers withstood the threat of imminent execution and by buying time helped to frustrate the robbery.
During the robberies, several of the townfolk came to aid their community against the well-known local bandits. Of these would-be defenders, four would be dead by the end of the day. Behind the Condon National Bank in an open lot, there are four markers showing where each of these defenders lost his life during the gun battle on October 5, 1892. Two of these four are buried in the same cemetery in town as their antagonists.
Bob and Grat Dalton (two of the robbers) were killed that fateful afternoon and their remains (once the photographer was finished) were deposited in Elmwood Cemetery several blocks south of the banks. Two of the defenders are likewise buried here, but the Daltons who long survived the shootout would ultimately be buried in the family plots in Kingfisher, Oklahoma.
Built by the Coffeyville's wealthiest man and later to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Brown Mansion still survives since its turn-of-the-century days. The estate was once immense, but has presently shrunk to include a few acres around the mansion. A well-known man from Ohio, W. P. Brown was a friend of President William H. Taft, who spent the night here on a colossal bed in one of the diminutive bedrooms.
The Dalton Museum stands near the spot of the First National Bank that later burned down. Part of the building showcases historical things relevant to the county, but much of the collection is obviously devoted to the Dalton Raid of 1892, including what purports to be a rifle from the Daltons' death photo. Carriages and other frontier implements are also on display.
Visitation to the mansion is presently only conducted by tours. Tickets can be purchased at the gift shop behind the mansion, or visitors to the Dalton Museum can buy a combo ticket for the museum and mansion. In either case, photography is not permitted inside the mansion, and with good reason. Despite its apparently fine condition, the masonry in many instances is cracking, so wooden panelwork and columns might stand splitting beside fragile windows and Tiffany lamps.
Likewise listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this small church with its interesting stained glass and charming belltower is crumbling even faster than the Brown Mansion. Preservation efforts are fast working to save this historic structure, now anchoring the corner of a quiet neighborhood.
This tiny chamber behind the teller's desks was the object of the twin raid. By 1892, bank robberies had become so customary in the United States that pistol fire and harsh yells no longer intimidated the citizenry. At the Condon National Bank, the tellers fumbled at opening the vault, occasioning a pause that brought the townfolk to their assistance.
A block from the Dalton Museum is a nondescript structure known as the Terminal Building (with the white stone engraving in the upper facade). The building stands at a little distance from the rail tracks, but otherwise keeps a quiet existence in a less trammeled part of Walnut Street. Despite this seemingly forgotten existence, the structure graces the National Register of Historic Places.
Like many county courthouses, the Carnegie Free Libraries of rural America tend to make the National Register of Historic Places as if by default. Closed at the time of my visit, the interior is likely embellished with nice hardwood trim and furnishings, but like other Carnegie libraries its exterior is nothing fancy.
Of the two national banks struck on October 5, 1892, only one remains standing. The First National Bank of Coffeyville later burned down, but its original front doors are now functioning within the Dalton Museum nearby. The Condon National Bank however remains intact if slightly embellished. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the authentic site now abuts the local Chamber of Commerce.