Dec 14, 2022
This is the fifth and final installation in the Frank Canton series. Link below for the previous four.
In the early morning hours of June 2nd, 1899, five masked men held up a Union Pacific Train near Wilcox, Wyoming. In what would become one of the more famous robberies of the old west, the bandits used dynamite to blast their way into a mail car and after another detonation took care of the safe, they’d ride away with an estimated 50,000 dollars. Nearly 2 million in today’s money.
And if this sounds familiar well maybe you’ve seen a little film called Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford.
Contrary to what’s portrayed in the movie, there’s a very good chance that Butch Cassidy himself had nothing to do with this particular hold up. Be that as it may, it’s next to certain that those who did were members of his gang – the Wild Bunch. Harry Longabaugh, aka the Sundance Kid, was likely one of the masked men. So was the deadly Harvey Logan and his brother Lonnie, the Tall Texan Ben Kilpatrick, and last but certainly not least was a land pirate by the name of George Flat Nose Curry.
The banditti were headed for a remote pass in the Bighorn mountains they called the Hole-in-the-wall, a sort of outlaw stronghold they used as a headquarters of sorts. And the hole-in-the-wall was located in Johnson County; the same Johnson County we’ve been discussing dang near this whole series.
Now the Wild Bunch did not exist when Frank Canton was Sheriff thereabouts and by the time the Wild Bunch came into being Frank had already moved on and when the Wild Bunch robbed that train at Wilcox, Canton was still up in Alaska. But he’d soon be returning. And, after a bit of comeuppance damn near a decade in the making – a little bit of Johnson County Justice if you will – Frank would saddle up and go on the hunt for the Wild Bunch. At least what was left of ‘em.
Got a lot to cover on this episode. An averted assassination, an epic ass whoopin, Canton’s career as a bounty hunter, his return to Indian Territory – his debut on the silver screen - and finally his ascension to the highest ranks of power. Something the man had been in pursuit of – one way or another - his entire life.
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Alias Frank Canton by Robert DeArment - https://www.amazon.com/Alias-Frank-Canton-Robert-DeArment/dp/080612900X
The Johnson County War by Bill O’Neal - https://www.amazon.com/Johnson-County-War-Bill-ONeal/dp/1571688765/ref=sr_1_2?crid=2K65FLR05BSV1&keywords=johnson+county+war&qid=1670763630&s=books&sprefix=johnson+county+war%2Cstripbooks%2C132&sr=1-2
The Bank Robbery (1908) - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RbX4ekoVBDg
Frank Canton Pt 1 – https://www.wildwestextra.com/frank-canton-part-1-the-outlaw-years/
Frank Canton Pt 2 – https://www.wildwestextra.com/frank-canton-part-2-sheriff/
Frank Canton Pt 3 – https://www.wildwestextra.com/frank-canton-part-3-johnson-county-war/
Frank Canton Pt 4 - https://www.wildwestextra.com/frank-canton-part-4-alaska/