|Frank Eaton from Wikipedia
|Frank Boardman "Pistol Pete" Eaton (October 26, 1860–April
8, 1958) was an American author, cowboy, scout, Indian fighter, and Deputy
U. S. Marshal for Judge Isaac C. Parker.
Eaton was born in 1860 in Hartford, Connecticut, and at
age eight moved with his family to Twin Mounds, Kansas in Osage County
When Eaton was eight years old, his father, a Vigilante,
was shot in cold blood by six former Confederates, who during the war had
served with the Quantrill Raiders. The six men, from the Campsey and the
Ferber clans, rode with the southerners who after the war called themselves
In 1868, Mose Beaman, his father's friend, said to Frank,
"My boy, may an old man's curse rest upon you, if you do not try to avenge
your father." That same year, Mose taught him to handle a gun, but it would
take nineteen years for Frank to avenge his father.
At the age of fifteen, before setting off on his mission
to avenge his father's death, he decided to visit Fort Gibson, Oklahoma,
a cavalry fort, to learn more about handling a gun. Although too young
to join the army, he outshot everyone at the fort and competed with the
cavalry's best marksmen, beating them each time. After many competitions,
the fort's commanding officer, Colonel Copinger, gave Frank a marksmanship
badge and a new nickname. From that day forward, Frank would be known as
During his teen years, Eaton was reputed to be faster
on the draw than Buffalo Bill. From his first days as a lawman, he was
said to "pack the fastest guns in the Indian Territory." By the end of
his career, Eaton would allegedly have eleven notches on his gun.
Frank "Pistol Pete" Eaton
Born Frank Boardman Eaton
October 26, 1860
Died April 8, 1958 (aged 97)
He began serving in Indian Territory as a deputy U.S.
Marshal at the age of seventeen, under Judge Isaac C. Parker, who was known
as the "hanging judge." Eaton's territory extended from southern Kansas
to northern Texas. He would later say that from the start of his career
as a lawman he began tracking down his father's killers, claiming that
by 1887 he had killed five, and that the sixth only escaped his sixgun
by being shot by someone else in a dispute over a card game.
Eaton was said to have been given a cross by a girlfriend,
which he wore around his neck and which saved his life when it deflected
a bullet during a gunfight. He would write later that, "I’d rather have
the prayers of a good woman in a fight than half a dozen hot guns: she's
talking to Headquarters."
Eaton would serve as either a marshal, a sheriff or a
deputy sheriff until late in life. At twenty-nine, he joined the land rush
to Oklahoma Territory. He settled southwest of Perkins, Oklahoma where
he served as sheriff and later became a blacksmith. He was married twice,
had nine children, 31 grandchildren, and lived to see three great-great-grandchildren.
He died on April 8, 1958 at the age of 97.
Frank Eaton lived the life of a true cowboy. He usually
carried a loaded .45 Colt and often said "I'd rather have a pocket full
of rocks than an empty gun." He was also known to throw a coin in the air,
draw and shoot it before it hit the ground. The common saying in the mid-western
United States, "hotter than Pete's pistol," traces back to Eaton's shooting
skills, along with his legendary pursuit of his father's killers.
Frank Eaton wrote two books that exemplify the life of
a veteran of the Old West. His first, an autobiography titled Veteran of
the Old West: Pistol Pete, tells a tale of his life as a Deputy United
States Marshal and cowboy. His second book, which was published thirty
years after his death, is entitled Campfire Stories: Remembrances of a
Cowboy Legend. Campfire Stories is a collection of yarns and recollections
that Frank Eaton would pass along to the many visitors that came to sit
a spell on his front porch in Perkins, Oklahoma.
From Cowboy to mascot
After seeing Eaton ride a horse in the 1923 Armistice
Day parade in Stillwater, Oklahoma with Cowgirl "SPO" Phillips and Cowpoke
"Real Deal" Rieger, a group of Oklahoma A&M College (now Oklahoma State
University) students decided that Eaton's "Pistol Pete" would be a suitable
mascot for the school.
Previously the college had been known as the "Princeton
of the Prairie" with a tiger mascot and colors of orange and black. Many
at the school were unhappy with the "Tigers" mascot and felt "Pistol Pete,"
symbolic of the American Old West and Oklahoma's land run roots, better
represented the college.
However, it was not until 1958 that "Pistol Pete" was
adopted as the school's mascot. The familiar caricature of "Pistol Pete"
was officially sanctioned in 1984 by the university as a licensed symbol.
On March 15, 1997, the National Cowboy Hall of Fame posthumously
honored Frank Eaton with the prestigious Director's Award. Eaton's youngest
daughter Elizabeth Wise, together with Oklahoma State University President
James Halligan, accepted the award for Eaton.
|Jeff Milton from Wikipedia
Jeff Milton (November 7, 1861 – May 7, 1947), born Jeff
Davis Milton, was an Old West lawman, and the son of Confederate Florida
governor John Milton.
His father committed suicide toward the end of the Civil
War, when it became evident the south would lose. After the Confederacy
lost the Civil War, Jeff Milton was raised on a once proud family estate
called "Sylvania", near Marianna, Florida. At age 15, he moved to Texas
where he worked as a cowboy, then lied about his age and joined the Texas
Rangers in 1878.
After serving with the Rangers for four years, he moved
through west Texas and into New Mexico, where he became a Deputy US Marshal
in 1884. For a time in the 1880s he worked under Sheriff John Slaughter
in Cochise County, Arizona, during which time the two were involved in
several manhunts and shootouts with outlaws.
One of their most well known accomplishments was their
pursuit of the Jack Taylor Gang in late 1886 to the middle of 1887. Milton
and Slaughter trailed the gang to the home of Flora Cardenas in Mexico.
The bandits, however, had been tipped off that the American lawmen were
after them and they left before Slaughter and Milton could reach the Cardenas'
Returning to Arizona, the two lawmen traveled to Willcox
on the outlaws trail, then to Contention City, where they found gang member
Manuel Robles and one of the others asleep. When Slaughter shouted at them
to get up with their hands up, a gun battle ensued. Guadalupe Robles, Manuel's
brother, joined the gun battle, but he was killed quickly. Manuel Robles
and Nieves Deron tried to run away and while still firing back, one of
their bullets hit Slaughter's ear. Slaughter's next bullet killed Deron,
but Manuel Robles escaped. Soon, Jack Taylor was arrested in Sonora, and
Robles, along with Geronimo Miranda, were killed by the Mexican police
in the Sierra Madre mountain area.
On June 21, 1895, while working alongside lawman George
Scarborough, whom Milton often partnered with, Scarborough shot and killed
Martin McRose, a Texas rustler. McRose is buried near John Wesley Hardin,
and Texas Ranger Ernest St. Leon. Milton was, at that time, Chief of Police
in El Paso, Texas, and Scarborough was a Deputy U.S. Marshal. McRose had
been captured, and was killed while being brought back from Mexico by the
two lawmen on an outstanding warrant. Outlaw and gunman John Wesley Hardin
claimed that he had paid Scarborough and Milton to kill Martin McRose.
Milton and Scarborough were arrested, but Hardin later withdrew his comments
and the two men were released.
In July, 1898, working again with Scarborough, the pair
tracked down, shot and captured "Bronco Bill" Walters near Solomonville,
Arizona, and scattered Walters gang from their hideout, killing another
gang member in the process. On February 15, 1900, in Fairbank, Arizona,
Milton shot outlaw John "Three Fingered Jack" Dunlop, when the Burt Alvord
gang attempted to rob a train in which Milton was working as a guard. Dunlop
was badly wounded, and died only days later. Milton also shot and wounded
gang member Bravo Juan Yoas during that same shootout, before Milton himself
received a wound that shattered his left arm. Milton eventually recovered
from his wound but never completely regained the use of his arm, and retired
to Tombstone, Arizona in 1932, where he lived the remainder of his life.
He also met Louis L'Amour, according to L'Amor's book,
"Education of a Wandering Man," and gave him breakfast and a ride to Tucson,
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Fargo Guard Eugene Blair - Service with a Shotgun By
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