“THE DAY THE GOOD GUYS WON”

ROBBERY AT BAXTER'S CURVE

— THE ROBBERY AT BAXTER’S CURVE —  Two men stood in the shadows and watched a Southern Pacific train pull into Dryden, Texas, to take on water. When it stopped, they slipped aboard the locomotive and drew their guns. 

At around midnight, March 13, 1912, Ben Kilpatrick and Ole Hobek forced the engineer of Train #9 to proceed to an iron bridge east of Baxter’s Curve near Sanderson, and stop the train. Waiting […]

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“PLAYING DEAD”

Wells Fargo Agent

— FACING DOWN THE ODDS — Wells Fargo express messenger Jeff Milton knew the gunshot wound to his arm did a lot of damage. But when told doctors planned to amputate it at the elbow, he nixed the idea. It wouldn’t be the first time Milton spit in the eye of adversity. 

A few days earlier, Milton stood his ground in a shootout at a small train station at Fairbank, Arizona. 

[…]

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JUSTICE IN SILVER CITY

Sheriff Whitehill

— FIRST-EVER LAWMAN TO ARREST BILLY THE KID — When the eastbound Southern Pacific rolled into the railroad siding at Gage, New Mexico, late on a Saturday afternoon, four masked men stormed out of hiding and opened fire, killing the engineer and messenger guard.

The bandits—Christopher “Kit” Joy, Mitch Lee, Frank Taggart, and George Cleveland—made off with $518 in coin and $312 in currency.

The […]

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GUNS, GOLD, AND A GETAWAY

Train Heist, Southern Pacific

Engineer Colonel Harper squinted into the darkness when the Southern Pacific westbound express emerged from a long, narrow railroad cut, spotted what looked like a red lantern in the distance, and applied the air brakes.

Sparks exploded from the big iron wheels as the locomotive skidded along the rails.

It slowed to a stop about an engine-length from the wooden barricade at Papago Station, about seventeen miles from Tucson.

Harper glanced at […]

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