Ned and Tom Mason were the Mason brothers, two-bit road agents who worked for Al Swearengen from the Gem Saloon in Deadwood, South Dakota. In 1876, as more and more residents were drawn to the gold-mining town, the Mason brothers and Persimmon Phil butchered the Metz family in a robbery staged to look like a Sioux attack; however, the young Sofia Metz had been hidden from the criminals and was later found when Ned "reported" the event. Former law-men Wild Bill Hickok and Seth Bullock were able to see through Ned's ruse and confronted him, only to gun him down when he attempted to draw on them. The following night, Tom drunkenly tried to avenge his brother's death by attempting to kill Wild Bill at the No. 10 Saloon, only for Hickok to draw first once again and shoot his would-be assassin dead.
Time in DeadwoodEdit
- "I seen a terrible thing tonight."
- ―Ned Mason
The Mason brothers were among those who came to the gold-mining town of Deadwood, South Dakota, where they found work in 1876 as road agents for criminal Al Swearengen, proprietor of the Gem Saloon. On the night of famed gunslinger Wild Bill Hickok's arrival in the camp, Tom, Ned and their friend Persimmon Phil butchered the travelling Norwegian Metz family in a brutal robbery staged to appear as a Sioux killing, though they failed to notice one of the family's children, Sofia Metz, hidden nearby.
Ned returned alone to the town, where he visited the No. 10 Saloon to report a Sioux attack. Though immediately suspicious of Mason, Wild Bill and former sheriff Seth Bullock volunteered to ride out with Ned to see the site of the attack - there, they found Sofia and brought her back to Doc Cochran. Sofia was in shock and seemingly unable to speak English in the first place so it was impossible to confirm Ned's involvement in the murders, but Hickok and Bullock confronted him nonetheless; Ned attempted to draw his weapon, only to be shot by the duo before he could fire.
- "Here I go. Revenge for my fuckin' brother."
- ―Tom Mason
The day after Ned was killed, Tom and Phil, unaware of his death, returned to the camp and used their share of the family's money for whores at the Gem. Afterwards Tom was informed by Al of Ned's death and broke down, vowing revenge on Hickok - that night, after drinking himself beyond reason, Tom approached Hickok at the No. 10 Saloon. But Hickok had immediately sensed the danger and was easily able to draw first, shooting his attacker dead.