Daniel Buck
Wed Jun 12, 2019 11:52am

Not to put too fine point on it, but there are some hereabouts who consider something "verified," if it appears in a newspaper, and a person "identified" if someone expresses an opinion. I have batches of newspaper articles about the Wild Bunch teeming with incorrect information, in fact, more incorrect than correct.

For example, the authors presently under discussion tout "verified newspaper eyewitness accounts" -- a jumble of meaningless words -- of sightings of Butch and Sundance in the US in 1901, subsequent to their February 1901 voyage to Argentina.

An example of a "verified" eyewitness account is from the Anaconda Standard, "One Was 'Butch'
Cassidy." If you bother to read the article it is a third-hand anecdote. A man told a man who told a sheriff who repeated it to the Anaconda.

The authors also offer what they describe as "credible Pinkerton eyewitness accounts," for example,
an agent's scribbled note saying that Sundance, "it's believed was in hospital last summer in Buffalo, NY." Whether one finds that remark credible or not, it is not an eyewitness account. The agent is repeating something he heard, qualified by the shop-worn phrase, "it's believed."

Moreover, I have folders of photographs sent to me by people who identified the subjects as Cassidy, Sundance, Ethel, etc., and whose opinions are not even close.

There are even, if you can believe this, self-avowed forensic facial recognition experts whose skill at identifying people in photos is less that that of a blindfolded man flipping a coin.

  • re:Bob Goodwin, Wed Jun 12 6:30am
    But Chris, only two of the five you have mentioned, Stanley Gardner and William White have been confirmed, in records, as having worked for the railroad in 1900/1901. Ira only as hearsay or family... more
    • re:vince garcia, Wed Jun 12 7:26pm
      Yes I have to update my article on that and give Chris some credit. If Sd was one of the men and knew that, he would certainly visit him in Tinitc, while possibly scouting Eureka for a possible... more
    • re: — Daniel Buck, Wed Jun 12 11:52am
      • Correction "summer 1901"Daniel Buck, Wed Jun 12 12:00pm
        Correction: "it's believed was in hospital last summer 1901 in Buffalo, NY." The operative clause is, "it's believed."
        • BelieveChrisV, Wed Jun 12 1:35pm
          first definition of believe - 1.accept (something) as true; feel sure of the truth of. So I dont see what your problem is. Lets also not forget the witness from the hospital said he was from... more
          • dictionaries, beliefs, & eyewitnessesDaniel Buck, Wed Jun 12 2:31pm
            Chris, We've been down the dictionary road before. Believe has several meanings, and normally the first is the oldest, not the most common, nor even the one apt to the sentence at hand. We have to... more
            • SemanticsChrisV, Wed Jun 12 2:50pm
              Think what you want to think if it makes you feel better. It still doesn't change the fact the witness said Sundance was from Montclair PA. Saying "so what the agent heard or recalled he heard, was... more
              • fandangoingDaniel Buck, Wed Jun 12 3:32pm
                You are mixing up who said what, and you describe the Pinkerton agent as an "eyewitness." which he was not. What the agent scribbled is not a model in clarity, but here it is: "It's believed was in... more
                • A Rock and HardplaceChrisV, Wed Jun 12 3:46pm
                  I get it dan. But your grasping at straws The sentence is pretty clear. ""It's believed was in hospital last summer 1901 Buffalo, NY pistol shot wound leg he said he got in the extreme west, and said ... more
                  • Re: A Rock and HardplaceDaniel Buck, Wed Jun 12 4:31pm
                    If the Pinkerton agent was talking with a Buffalo hospital staffer, which is possible, because we do not know who he was speaking with, why the "it's believed" qualifier? Was the staffer not certain... more
    • re:ChrisV, Wed Jun 12 6:39am
      Hey Bob, Thats what this is all about. Ive put the information out there and you can believe it or not. Im ok with that. IMO Butch and SK have been ID as well as Ira, but again take it for what you... more
      • re:Bob Goodwin, Wed Jun 12 11:03am
        Yes, the Springville Robbery was the one where Gunplay Maxwell was caught after the robbery.Why either Harvey Logan, or Sundance would have been involved with Maxwell, especially considering the fact ... more
        • Birds of a feathervince garcia, Thu Jun 13 4:18am
          Don't forget the Currie Gang were nothing but post office thieves and rustlers at that point no higher on the chain than Maxwell in 1898 unless you count the brilliant attempt at Belle Fourche as... more
        • re:ChrisV, Wed Jun 12 11:07am
          Gotcha. Gunplay was a bad wanna be outlaw. I know about the documents being fake. Would that make the entire story made up? Or could it mean someone humped it up with fake documents to add to it? I... more
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