Lawmen & Outlaws
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Submitted by: Barbara Clayton
|April 10, 1882 - Vol. 3, No. 16|
On the morning of the 3d instant, Jesse James was killed at his house in St. Joseph, Mo., by Robert Ford, a young desperado whom Jesse had under training. Charles and Robert Ford had been currying their horses and making ready for a trip to Nebraska, where they intended to rob a bank. Returning to the house they met James who remarked that it was very warm and threw off his coat and pistols. He then got up on a chair to dust off some pictures. The Fords saw their opportunity, and Robert fired, the ball hitting James in the lower part of the head and coming out over the left eye. The boys then telegraphed the news to the Governor and the authorities at Kansas City, and then surrendered to the proper authorities. Robert Ford was working in connection with the Governor and the authorities of Kansas City for several months, and this was the first time they had caught him unarmed. The departed desperado was married eight years ago, and leaves a wife and two small children. Mrs. Samuels, mother of Frank and Jesse James, was present at the inquest and identified the body as that of her son. Two large bullet scars were found in the right breast near the nipple. By these, several parties identified him; and there is no doubt but that the greatest desperado Missouri ever produced is dead this time. Jesse was 37 years old. The Kansas City Journal comments as follows:
The state of Missouri is at least rid of the most daring outlaw that has ever disgraced the Western country. Jesse James has met the fate due him. Blood, though it sleep a time, yet never dies. "The great King of kings hath in the table of his law commanded that thou shalt do no murder." Spurning this edict, the outlaw whose remains are now lying in St. Joseph to be gazed upon by gaping thousands, roamed the country for many years--in fact from his early boyhood, committing murder after murder, defying the laws of God and man with impunity, until the very earth cried for vengeance upon him. Vengeance hath been taken, and no honest man will shed a tear over his fate. He deserved it a thousand times over, and the maudlin sympathy expressed for him and his by some people, particularly in St. Joseph, only disgraces those who give expression to it.
Jesse James was a curse to the land that gave him birth, a red handed murderer and highway robber, at whose taking off good people in every section of the union will rejoice. The old gang of robbers led by the James boys in now pretty well broken up. Frank lives, but nearly all of his followers are gone, and recruits will not be easily obtained. Frank will yet meet the same fate which overtook Jesse.
|April 25, 1882, Vol. 3, No. 17|
Governor Crittenden received a dispatch on the 17th that Charles and Robert Ford had been convicted of murder in the first degree. He at once issued pardons for both and sent them to St. Joseph by special messenger. He has no fears of personal injury to himself for the course he has taken to secure the removal of the James gang.
Submitted by Donna Dreyer
My former neighbor, Anna Mary (Bonifield) Metz, had in her possession a photo of she claimed was James and Frank James. This photo was sent to Mary's mother, Laura (King) Bonifield, by Jesse James III. The story that Mary told was that Laura was related to Jesse and Frank. They came to visit her in Woodward on many occassions.
The back of this photo is inscribed
Mary also has a clipping from a newspaper showing a photo
of a person claiming to be Jesse James. She claims Frank and Jesse came to visit her mother after Jesse was supposedly shot by John Ford.
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