Coll. by M.C. Parler Mr. William Eden
Monte Ne, Ark.
January 20, 1960
Reel 343, Item 3
Talk about the outlaws on the border: Sam Bass, the Jameses, the Youngers, the Starrs, and others.
MCP: Did you ever hear anybody say they had met Sam Bass?
MCP: Do you know the song about Jesse James?
WE No ma'm.
MCP: Did the Younger boys run with the same crowd that Bass ran with?
WE: No no no no! Sam didn't fool with them at all. Sam he left his home at sixteen and went to Texas, you know, add he got in with em in Texas. Cole Younger commences
I am a bandit highway man Cole Younger is my name
(After Mr. Edens sings this song, which will be transcribed as Item 4, he continues to talk about the desperadoes, and that will be transcribed as a continuation of item 3)
MCP: They don't tell how Core Younger died, do they?
WE: Nono no. But we have news of him, and the history books, that Cole eventually was released. He made a preacher while he was in the penetentiary. And Jim Younger, his brother, —
Bob, now, that was the one that got shot in the mouth — Bob he died — and Jim Younger and Cole they served and they paroled emfor so long, and Jim wanted to marry his old sweetheart, and they wouldn't stand fer it under the parole, you know.
They wouldn't allow him to, and he killed himself. And afterwards they give Cole a free parole.
MCP: And he took to preachin'?
WE: Why he preached in the penetentiary. And he preached after he got out.
And Jess James and Frank they left Cole and them after that robbery — they was ail into that, and Frank and Jess got clear away. And they captured Cole and them in the cave.
MCP: And then Jesse James got shot in the back by one of his own men, didn't he?
WE: Yeh, by his cousin. Him and Bob was cousins. But I beaieve
-more-another man died for Jess.
Reel 343, Item 3
I'll tell you what I do know: I've read their books a lot, and their pictures in em you know. And while I was in Oklahoma —now after I got to be great-grandpaw in Oklahoma —
. . . my wife was a great reader, and we took lots of papers.
And we got a paper with Jess James's picture in it, and when I looked at the picture I said, "There's Jess James's picture." When we come to read it, there was Jesse's confession that he that Bob killed another man for him. And Bob, you see — the government had offered so-much reward, and it was reprieved for Jess James's body, dead or alive. And Bob planned with a feller that him and that feller he was a-planning with that kind of favored Jess to capture Jess. Bob told the feller they would. And Bob told Jess how he'd have the man fixed and have him settin' in the chair waitin' fer Jess to come in. And the man was to kill him. Jess come in and shot the feller in the back of the head. Jess killed him himself, killed the man himself And they thought Bob had killed the man, and so Bob got his pardon and also his reward. And Jess got away.
And this man now, that the picture — said he was Jess James. And he said that when he left there, he never did live with his family any more. He left there and he went to — now I'm studying what state he went to — but anyhow, he went there and he married another woman. But of course, he went by the name of Robert Howard. And he married another woman. And he said, one day — why it had went on for years. And Jess was dead, of course. And Frank James, his daddy-in-law — I guess he was in good standing, a man that was well-thought-of, his daddy-in-law. And they lawed Frank out. And that turned Frank loose, you know. And so Frank understood that his brother was living. If he hadn't, he'd a killed Bob Ford, that's what he'd a done. In my judgement.
And one day, though, this feller said that he was settin' a-talkin' with some fellers, and a man come along, said, "Hello there!" Why, he said, "Jesse James!" And said his wife was settin' in the door and heard it. And he said he got up and went out there. And he was one of the Youngers' relatives that feller was. And he come along and knowed Jess. Him and
Jess talked a long while, this paper said, and the feller went on, and went back and said to his wife, he said, "Well, what are you going to do about it?" She said, "About what?" Said "You heared what that feller called me?" "Yeah." "Well," he said, "I'm Jess James." He said, "What are you goin' to do?"
And she told him, she said, "You've made me a livin' and treated me right, and I'm goin' to stay with you as long as we live."
And he outlived her, and he come into Oklahoma now, he claimed. He was at Muskogee, Oklahoma, lookin' for a man who was a U.S. detective at that time, and Jess and him knew one
-moreReel 343, Item 3
another. Jess knowed when they'd meet that one or tother of em would die — they'd shoot one another down. And he was a- goin' then to see Uncle Bud — I forgit the feller, Bud somebody — and so he went on to Muskoggg, and Uncle Bud was dead.
And he had a son Bud, and he visited with that Bud. And he come back and he said he was goin to Fort Smith to meet some friends that he had down there. And that was the last I heard of him.
WE: Wasn't Belle Starr a kind of a pal of Jesse James's? No,
MCP: Did you ever hear of Cherokee Bill?
WE: I not only heard of him, I seen him. Face to face. Himand Henry Starr both. When they was in Fort Smith jail, they was under a death sentence then. And Henry was only about eighteen. And so Belle ahd been in there with em, and she concealed a pistol and got it in there to Cherokee Bill. And the man that captured Cherokee Bill, he said he'd kill the man that captured him if he ever got out. And they even phoned to that man to
look out, they thought he was goin' to make his getaway. But
they surrounded him and held him in there. And he eventually agreed to give his surrender to one feller, give his pistol
to one certain feller, and he said that was to Henry Starr.
And they told him to hand it over and they'd come in then, and so he thought that Henry -- him and Henry was both under death sentence, they was goin' to hang — and Henry just turned the pistol, the stock of it, and handed it through the bars, and the muzzle of it back towards himself, to the officer. And he tuck it, and Cherokee Bill said, "Henry, you ain't got the nerve I thought you had." And they gave Henry a — sent him to the pen, saying that they was commutin' his sentence and sent him to the pen. And then eventually got out. And Henry was out several years. And he helped some more fearers to make a robbery and got killed down south in this state. I lived down in Oklahoma right among — I knew Cale Starr, a cousin to Henry,
I knew him down there. And I knew the Christys. You've heard of them, ain't ye?
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