Striking boudoir card featuring eight outlaws standing in front of a building, likely the original courthouse used by "Hanging Judge" Isaac C. Parker at Fort Smith, Arkansas, seat of the United States District Court for the Western District of Arkansas. Verso blue ink inscription reads "2nd from left: Robinson Kemp / 6th from left: Meredith Crow / Taken while in custody at Fort Smith, Ark."
Though there are discrepancies in the historical record, some sources indicate that eight men who received death sentences from Judge Parker - including Robinson Kemp and Meredith Crow - were scheduled to be hanged at Fort Smith on April 23, 1886. This photograph may be an image of Kemp and Crow in custody with the other outlaws who were set to share their fate. An article from the Pittston, Pennsylvania Evening Gazette reported that "The death sentences of five of the eight Indian territory murderers, to have been hanged here [Fort Smith, Ark.] on Friday next have been commuted to imprisonment for life....Those commuted are Meredith Crow, who killed a desperado named Cubb Cartney; Robinson Kemp, charged with killing Henry Rich, postmaster at Fort Washita, and He-Wah-Nuckee, Luce Hammond and one Wiley, three half-civilized Cherokees, who murdered a peddler named Owens for a plug of tobacco." Two men were decidedly not as fortunate. James Wasson and Joseph Jackson both were hanged on April 23 as scheduled. Joseph Jackson was described in records as a "Negro" who murdered his wife in the Choctaw Nation, and may be one of the two men on the right side of this image.
Overall toning along with minor soil particularly on mount. Minor chipping on edges of image with one small loss near top center. Loss to mount on right corner. Visible crease running along middle right of image.
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