Wild Tulare County: Outlaws, Rogues and Rebels

Wild Tulare County: Outlaws, Rogues and Rebels


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In the 1800s, Tulare County, California, was a hotbed of desperate characters whose deadly gunplay and murderous inclinations left a trail of bodies across the region. Although the Central Valley now makes its name in agriculture, Tulare County was once a bastion of the Wild West with a lineup of hardened criminals that has scarcely been equaled in the annals of crime. Train bandits, coldblooded murderers and callous outlaws armed with shotguns and butcher knives plagued Visalia, Porterville and other sleepy central California towns. Join historian and retired Visalia Police captain Terry Ommen as he relates the transgressions of Tulare County's roughest characters, including thrilling tales of the pistol-packing Mason-Henry Gang, a deadly duel between politically divided journalists and vigilante justice exacted by angry mobs.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781609495091
Publisher: History Press, The
Publication date: 10/08/2012
Pages: 128
Sales rank: 1,235,044
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Terry Ommen served with the Visalia Police Department for twenty five years until his retirement in 1997. Ommen has been a regular columnist for local newspapers, including the Fresno Bee and the Visalia Times Delta, and he currently authors the "Voices from Four Creeks Country" column for the Valley Voice and a "Historic Happenings" blog. Ommen is also a past president of the Tulare County Historical Society. Harold L. Edwards is a western writer and past president of the National Outlaw/Lawmen Association, now called the Wild West History Association.

Table of Contents

Foreword Harold L. Edwards 9

Acknowledgements 11

Introduction 13

A Hard Character Charles Reavis 15

The Desperate Life of Frank Creeks 20

Hung by the Neck by a Mob, Justly Deserved Jim McCrory 28

Two Bad Tulare County Boys Ruggles Brothers 35

A Visalia Ruffian Josiah Lovern 43

Hog Rogers Becomes Food for Kong 51

Cutthroats Through and Through Mason-Henry Gang 58

A Secessionist Street Fighter James Wells 65

Porterville's Tough Guy Jim McKinney 71

Visalia's Notorious Train Robbers and Killers Evans Sontag 78

Stage Careers that Went Bad Keener Dowdle 91

He Was Known as Bloody Morris 96

The Most Dangerous Man on the Pacific Coast John Schipe 102

Notes 107

Bibliography 115

Index 119

About the Author 127

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