Granny Women: Healing and Magic in Appalachia

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Granny Women: Healing and Magic in Appalachia


Special exhibit devoted to Civil War widow

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Special exhibit devoted to Civil War widow

Writing More Women into United States History — njcssjournal

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Contributors: Shannon Alexander, Julianna Carron, Charles Friedman, Jennifer McCabe, Shannon Mitchell, Josh Schoenbrun, Stephanie Skier, Jasmine Torres, and Alan Singer “I have sometimes been ready to think that the passion for Liberty cannot be Equally Strong in the Breasts of those who have been accustomed to deprive their fellow Creatures of theirs.” – Abigail Adams, […]

via Writing More Women into United States History — njcssjournal


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December 23, 1880, Tom Folliard was in the grave and Garrett had just killed Charlie Bowdre. The Kid, Tom Pickett, Billy Wilson and Dave Rudabaugh were trapped in the stone building at Stinking Springs with Garrett outside ready to kill them. The four eventually gave up but the Kid held a secret; a secret missed by Garrett as well as history.

Before the boys gave up, Louis “the Animal” Bousman, one of Garrett’s men says, “Billy and his outfit began trying to dig port holes in that rock building. There was only one north window and one west door. Pat says, ‘There is no use for us to lay there all day, we better get away from here before they do get port holes.” This is confirmed in a Letter from Jim East, to Charlie Siringo, of May 1, 1920. East says Garrett told them to go around to the other side because they heard digging and thought the Kid was digging “port holes”.

Pickett, Wilson & Rudabaugh gave up but the Kid didn’t. Paco Anaya in his book says, “It was already very late when Billy gave up, and as soon as Billy was secure, Pat went into the house to bring what they had there, and found that Billy had piled up all the rifles and pistols, as well as the gun belts, and did his business on them and got them all covered.”

Garrett forgot who sent him after the Kid, it was the Secret Service; they were after the counterfeit. The Kid had it and to hide the money, the only choice was to bury it. The hole they dug would’ve been noticeable. Garrett would’ve easily seen the fresh turned earth.

The “tell” is in their story. When the Kid dug a hole, the posse heard and thought they were digging portholes to shoot back. The digging was not in the wall but the floor. When the hole was dug, the Kid threw a Colt, .45, into the sack and buried it with the money; if he could escape he’d have money and a gun.

John P. Meadows saw the Kid after his escape of April 28 and told him to hightail it to Mexico. The Kid said, “I haven’t any money. What could I do if I went to Mexico or some other place with no money? I’ll have to go back and get a little before I can leave.”

Still skeptical? In 1932, Tom Pickett, was seventy-six and living in Arizona. He had broken his leg when he stepped through a cattle guard, covered with snow. Some say he was in his normal state, drunk. At the time his only means of support came from a small pension from the Texas Rangers. The pension was not enough to live on; he only served from April 1, 1876 to August 31, 1877.

In Philip J. Rasch book “Trailing Billy the Kid” Pickett told Rasch about the buried money. Picket told Rasch, “he sent Ed Coles to dig up a lot of money which the Kid’s gang had buried under the floor before their surrender at Stinking Springs. Cole found the spot, but the money was all paper and had rotted away.” No, the Kid told Meadows what happened to it, “I’ll have to go back and get a little before I can leave.”

About five months had elapsed since they buried the money. When the Kid dug it up, he reached into the bag and pulled out the Colt pistol, that had already begun to rust. The Kid stood with a bag of money, wearing a pistol and holding a rusted twelve-dollar shooter. The pistol meant nothing and he kicked it back into the hole.

Twenty-nine years later, in the summer of 1910, nine-year-old Ralph Campo was digging in that spot and found a rusted, still loaded, Colt, .45.

The pistol is owned by our friend Arnold Duke and can be seen at Fox Cave, just out side of Ruidoso, New Mexico. It’s the pistol Billy the Kid held on this day 138-year ago, buried, still loaded and is evidence of Billy the Kid’s secret.


Broom factory once located in Spring Valley

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Broom factory once located in Spring Valley

How the Civil War created Coca-Cola…

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How the Civil War created Coca-Cola…

18th-century business women – trade cards

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18th-century business women – trade cards

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