The Last Outlaws: The Lives and Legends of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

( 7 )

Overview

The Old West was coming to an end.
Two legendary outlaws refused to go with it.
 
As leaders of the Wild Bunch, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid executed the most daring bank and train robberies of their day. For several years at the end of the 1890s, the two friends, along with a revolving band of thieves, eluded law enforcement ...

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The Last Outlaws: The Lives and Legends of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

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Overview

The Old West was coming to an end.
Two legendary outlaws refused to go with it.
 
As leaders of the Wild Bunch, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid executed the most daring bank and train robberies of their day. For several years at the end of the 1890s, the two friends, along with a revolving band of thieves, eluded law enforcement while stealing from the rich bankers and Eastern railroad corporations who exploited Western land…until they rode headlong into the twentieth century.
 
In The Last Outlaws, Thom Hatch brings these memorable characters to life like never before. From their early holdup attempts to that fateful day in Bolivia, Hatch draws on a wealth of fresh research to go beyond the myth and provide a compelling new look at these legends of the Wild West.

 Includes Photographs
 

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

Notorious in their own time, the late 19th century outlaws known as Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid gained new fame in the eponymous 1969 Oscar-winning film that starred Paul Newman and Robert Redford. In fact, as Thom Natch's breakthrough new double biography shows, the pair was even more colorful than their cinematic equivalents. Drawing on recently released Pinkerton files and new material about the possibility that they survived their alleged 1908 gun showdown deaths, he traces the lives of two frontier criminals who, perhaps unfortunately for them, outlived their era.

Publishers Weekly
While not the first or likely the last book to chronicle the colorful lives of outlaws Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Hatch (Black Kettle) has potentially written the most authoritative. Drawing from an impressive number of sources, Hatch's multidimensional study of two of the Wild West's most famous criminals and their compatriots strives for accuracy without sacrificing entertainment value. He covers the duo's evolution from ranch hands to robbers with a reporter's eye and a novelist's sense of drama, recounting colorful anecdotes without letting the story get the best of him; each robbery, tryst, and outlaw with whom Butch and Sundance crossed paths is noted here, often with footnotes. Some escapades, like the story behind the infamous photo of the Wild Bunch, a boneheaded error that forced the group to abandon their criminal ways due to their newfound notoriety, have been told before, but Hatch's enthusiasm for the material and empathy for his subjects makes them seem new. Photos, maps, and a litany of sources that offer supplemental reading material should give armchair sheriffs plenty of material to work with in this immersive and entertaining study.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
From the Publisher
"An easygoing account of the outlaw duo whose era separated Frank and Jesse James from Bonnie and Clyde." —-Kirkus
Library Journal
Hatch, author of popular histories of the American West (e.g., Black Kettle: The Cheyenne Chief Who Sought Peace but Found War), turns his attention to the Western outlaw trail in this double biography of Robert Leroy Parker (aka Butch Cassidy) and Harry Longabaugh (aka the Sundance Kid). He compares the outlaws from various perspectives including their childhoods, as members of the Wild Bunch in the Rocky Mountains, their reported deaths in South America, and later stories of their reappearance in America. Hatch reviews and comments on information from recent publications and archival records, with some of his text on the Longabaugh family history being closely based on Donna B. Ernst’s The Sundance Kid: The Life of Harry Alonzo Longabaugh. Hatch’s final chapter is his most original, as he critically questions the evidence that Cassidy and Sundance survived their South American adventures.

Verdict Hatch’s work brings the story of the two outlaws to a broad popular audience. However, historians should also note Mark T. Smokov’s He Rode with Butch and Sundance: The Story of Harvey “Kid Curry” Logan and Bill Betenson’s Butch Cassidy, My Uncle, both published last year.—Nathan Bender, Albany Cty. P.L., Laramie, WY

(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Reviews
In this dual biography of celebrated bandits, a specialist in the Old West deftly separates fact from fiction. The nature of their business required Robert Leroy Parker and Harry Longabaugh to adopt many aliases, but they were best known as Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Raised in religious families, both men were well-read, both did a prison stretch for horse stealing, and both had a taste for the traditional cowboy pleasures of drinking, gambling and whoring. The handsome, quick-tempered, aloof Sundance was famous for his lightning draw. The gregarious, shrewd Butch was a natural-born leader, known for his meticulous execution of heists, paying special attention to the getaway plan. Together, from rough hideouts like Wyoming's Hole-in-the-Wall and Utah's Robbers' Roost, they bossed the notorious Wild Bunch, a loose confederation of ruffians and desperados that included the likes of "Kid Curry" and "News" Carver. Butch and Sundance made periodic attempts to go straight, but they always returned to their robbing ways, finally fleeing to Bolivia where the cavalry caught up with them in 1908. Though he supplies plenty of information, Hatch (Osceola and the Great Seminole War, 2012, etc.) earns huge credibility by frankly admitting that much remains unknown about these legendary outlaws, including the mysterious origins and disappearance of Sundance's beguiling paramour, Etta Place, and the precise circumstances of their deaths. He underscores his theme of Butch and Sundance as the last of a breed, reminding us that by the turn of the century, outlaws no longer faced capture merely by random individuals, but rather by an "organized system," whereby detective agencies, Pinkerton and Wells Fargo, armed with money and resources, could coordinate with all levels of law enforcement to hunt down criminals. An easygoing account of the outlaw duo whose era separated Frank and Jesse James from Bonnie and Clyde.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780451416865
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 1/7/2014
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 295,783
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Thom Hatch is the author of numerous books on the history of the American West, including Black Kettle: The Cheyenne Chief Who Sought Peace but Found War, which was awarded the Western Writers of America’s Spur Award for Best Biography. A consultant and commentator for the History Channel and PBS, Hatch has published articles in the Denver Post, Rocky Mountain News, True West, and Western Horseman.
 

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi

Prologue 1

Chapter 1 The Boy from the Mormon Empire 7

Chapter 2 Telluride 29

Chapter 3 The Boy from Pennsylvania 53

Chapter 4 Sundance 73

Chapter 5 Riding the Outlaw Trail 93

Chapter 6 Crime and Punishment 115

Chapter 7 Day of the Outlaw 135

Chapter 8 The Wild Bunch 159

Chapter 9 Pinkertons on the Trail 179

Chapter 10 End of the American Trail 201

Chapter 11 Patagonia 221

Chapter 12 The Banditos Americanos 239

Chapter 13 Shoot-Out at San Vicente 259

Chapter 14 Life and Death Mysteries 281

Bibliography 301

Notes 317

Index 341

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 7 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 7, 2013

    A very comprehensive account of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance K

    A very comprehensive account of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 22, 2013

    Dry as dust.

    While informative very dull. Almost didn't finish it.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    If you liked their legend then read this book.

    If you liked their legend then read this book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 19, 2013

    excellent

    very informative

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 22, 2013

    Speculation

    Interesting reading. I love the historical facts, but greatly disappointed with all the speculation of what they 'probably' or 'likely' did.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2013

    This is a really entertaining read. Very captivating. The author

    This is a really entertaining read. Very captivating. The author did a brilliant job painting pictures with words.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews

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