14 July 2015

On This Day: Sheriff kills Billy the Kid


The infamous Billy the Kid was shot and killed by Sheriff Pat Garrett On This Day in 1881 at the Maxwell Ranch in New Mexico. Billy the Kid, infamous gunslinger of the Old Wild West, escaped from prison three months prior to his fatal altercation with Sheriff Garrett.

He was one of the most wanted criminals in the West. By the time he was 18, he had committed at least 17 murders, including Sheriff William Brady. 

History.com provides his real name as Henry McCarty. An article in Lancaster Intelligencer, dated 12 August 1881, lists his birth name as Billy M’Carthy and states he was born in New York just 22 years prior.  The Cheyenne Transporter states his real name was Wm. Bonney and he was not quite 21. 

As a young child, his family moved to Grant County, New Mexico.  

Sources:

“Billy the Kid is shot to death”. History.com  

Cheyenne transporter. (Darlington, Indian Terr.), 25 July 1881. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. 

Clearfield Republican. (Clearfield, Pa.), 03 Aug. 1881. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. 

Lancaster daily intelligencer. (Lancaster, Pa.), 12 Aug. 1881. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. 

 

On This Day is a prompt to further explore historical events.
                

© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015
Locations listed are located in Pennsylvania (USA), unless otherwise noted in post.