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Robbers, Rustlers and Rogues

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  • Palgrave Williams (1676 - 1724)
    Palsgrave Williams was born in 1676.1 He was the son of John Williams and Anna Alcock.1 He married Elizabeth (?).1 Children of Palsgrave Williams and Elizabeth (?) Abigail Williams+1 b. 1700 Pa...
  • John Bradmore, of Exeter (deceased)
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia John Bradmore (- d. 1412) a surgeon, locksmith, coin forger, and author of the Philomena. Bradmore was the attending surgeon of future King of England, Henry V...
  • Garrett Brock Trapnell (1938 - 1993)
    Garrett Brock Trapnell (January 31, 1938 – September 7, 1993) was a con man, bank robber, and aircraft hijacker of the 1960s and early 1970s. Trapnell robbed a string of banks in Canada, fre...
  • Thomas Dennison (1874 - 1962)
    In 1912 the 2nd Zeederberg Coach robbery took place on Pilgrims Hill. The Highwayman was Tommy Dennison. Dennison had come out to South Africa as a private during the Anglo Boer War. He was a bugler an...
  • Pierre Cornulle Faculyn Basson, b1c2d6e9f7g1h1 (1830 - 1906)
    PIERRE BASSON: 1903 Pierre Corneille Faculys Basson was posthumously convicted of murder in 1906. He was described by Inspector Easton, the police officer who went to investigate his death, as 'a scoun...

Bring over your ancestors who may not have always been on the right side of "the law ..."

Some definitions


  • a dishonest or unprincipled man: "you are a rogue and an embezzler!"
  • a person whose behavior one disapproves of but who is nonetheless likable or attractive (often used as a playful term of reproof): "Cenzo, you old rogue!"


  • n. One who works or acts with energy and promptness; an active, efficient person; a “hustler”; originally, a cowboy.
  • n. A cowman who procures his stock by capturing the cattle of other owners and branding them as his own; a cattle-thief.
  • * “The prosecution of these men was undertaken with something of the old vigor that characterized the pursuit of horse thieves, with this difference, that, whereas all the world had hated a horse thief as a common enemy, very much of the world found excuse for the so-called rustler, who was known to be doing only what his accusers had done before him.” The Story of the Outlaw: A Study of the Western Desperado

About Stagecoach Robbery

A real danger for stagecoach travelers on local or long haul lines was the risk of robbery by highwaymen, road agents, or bandits, right up into the early 20th Century. Cash payrolls and bank transfers were regularly carried by these scheduled stage lines. California saw the first stagecoach robbery in April 1852, when a Nevada City stage was robbed outside Illinoistown by a gang led by Reelfoot Williams.

Tom Bell led the earliest well-organized stagecoach robbery gang, using informants to alert them when a stagecoach had a shipment of gold or rich passengers aboard. His gang began and ended in 1856 but was followed by others, like Rattlesnake Dick, who used Bell's methods. One of the more successful individual road agents was Charles Bolles a.k.a. "Black Bart", known to have robbed California stages from 1875 to 1883. As gold mining spread across the West, so did the stagecoach robbers.

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