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THE “TONTO” OF INDIAN TERRITORY

By Art T. Burton

Long overlooked by historians and the press, black lawman Bass Reeves has become well known among Western historians if not the general public. In my 2006 biography of Reeves I compared… Continue reading

CRAWFORD “CHEROKEE BILL” GOLDSBY

….the toughest of them all

 By Bennie J. McRae, Jr.

On a sunny afternoon on March 17, 1896 as Crawford “Cherokee Bill” Goldsby escorted by prison guards, his mother Ellen, Amanda Foster, an elderly lady… Continue reading

FLOYD WILSON: FORT SMITH LAWMAN

By Art T. Burton

Floyd Wilson was one of the most able and noted deputy U.S. marshals for the Fort Smith federal court during the 1880s and 1890s. He also worked on and off as… Continue reading

BASS REEVES AND THE NATIONAL MEDIA OF THE FRONTIER ERA

By Art T. Burton

In recent years Deputy United States Marshal Bass Reeves has garnered quite a bit of national publicity. My last book, published in 2006 by the University… Continue reading

A. J. “BUD” TRAIL: CLAREMORE, I.T., DEPUTY U.S. MARSHAL

By Art T. Burton

This article is on a little known, but courageous white lawman from the Indian Territory by the name of A. J. “Bud” Trail. I first became interested… Continue reading

THE CHEROKEE FRONTIER POLICE OF THE INDIAN TERRITORY

By Art T. Burton

The Indian police of the Indian Territory were as heroic and brave as any law enforcement officers of the Old West. The Cherokee Nation was and is presently… Continue reading

BASS REEVES – DEPUTY UNITED STATES MARSHAL

A Legendary Lawman on the Western Frontier Who Rode for Judge Isaac Parker

By Art T. Burton

Bass Reeves was often called “one of the bravest men this country has ever known.” “Invincible,”… Continue reading

BILL DOOLIN AND THE BLACK OKLAHOMBRES

A Legendary Lawman on the Western Frontier Who Rode for Judge Isaac Parker

By Art T. Burton

The “King of the Oklahoma Outlaws” was the title Deputy U.S. Marshal Bill Tilghman gave Bill Doolin.… Continue reading

BLACK, RED AND DEADLY, PART II

By Art T. Burton

It has been over ten years since the release of my first book, Black, Red and Deadly: Black and Indian Gunfighters of the Indian Territory, 1870-1907. Since that time many… Continue reading

CHEROKEE SLAVE REVOLT OF 1842

By Art T. Burton

Black slavery in America usually evokes images of the antebellum South, but few realize that members of the Five Civilized Tribes–the Cherokees, Choctaws, Chickasaws, Creeks, and Seminoles–in Indian Territory, today’s Oklahoma,… Continue reading

BYNUM COLBERT: FORT SMITH SOLDIER LAWMAN

By Art T. Burton

There were many deputy U.S. marshals who worked for the Fort Smith, Arkansas federal court who should be better known and recognized for their contributions. One of these men was… Continue reading

THE LADY SHOOTIST

By Art T. Burton

In an earlier article I wrote titled, “Women of the Shooting Iron” I mentioned a young lady named F.M. Miller who was a deputy U.S. marshal. A newspaper stated that she was commissioned… Continue reading

THE LEGACY OF BASS REEVES

By Art T. Burton

As we move toward the millennium I feel more strongly than ever that Bass Reeves was the most important lawman in the Indian Territory and one of the greatest frontier heroes… Continue reading

WOMEN OF THE SHOOTING IRON

By Art T. Burton

Today on television there is a very popular program titled “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman.” This show highlights the unlikely premise of a medically trained female doctor on the western frontier of… Continue reading

GUNFIGHT AT BOLEY, OKLAHOMA

By Art T. Burton

The most famous shoot-out in Boley, Oklahoma, occurred on November 23, 1932, when Pretty Boy Floyd’s right-hand man, George Birdwell and two confederates attempted to rob the Farmers and Merchants Bank in… Continue reading

OKLAHOMA’S FRONTIER INDIAN POLICE

Part Five

Black and White Lighthorsemen in Indian Territory

 By Art T. Burton

There were quite a few black lighthorsemen in the Creek and Seminole Nations who became renown. In the Seminole Nation, Freedman Dennis… Continue reading

OKLAHOMA’S FRONTIER INDIAN POLICE

Part Four

Other Outstanding Indian Lawmen

 By Art T. Burton

John C. West was the last captain of the United States Indian Police, and a member of the Cherokee Lighthorsemen. West stood six feet five… Continue reading

OKLAHOMA’S FRONTIER INDIAN POLICE

Part Three

Jackson William Ellis

 By Art T. Burton

Possibly the most outstanding Indian policeman was Jackson William Ellis, born in Sweet Town, Cherokee Nation in 1849. He was known as Jack Ellis and was… Continue reading

OKLAHOMA’S FRONTIER INDIAN POLICE

Part Two

Charles LeFlore

By Art T. Burton

Charles LeFlore was an outstanding but little known lawman in the history of Indian Territory. His family was one of the most prominent in the Choctaw Nation. LeFlore… Continue reading

OKLAHOMA’S FRONTIER INDIAN POLICE

Part One

By Art T. Burton

The story of the frontier Indian police in the history of Oklahoma is very important. It is one of the unsung stories in the annuals of law enforcement in the… Continue reading