@Deglassco@mastodon.social
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Deglassco

@Deglassco@mastodon.social

Lecturer l Doctoral Candidate/ABD in History and Sociology of American Media Representation of Race, Class, and Public History, Rutgers, New Brunswick. NO JUSTICE NO PEACE >> BLACK LIVES MATTER. I always follow back. Just give me a bit of time. #historodons #journodons #BlackMastodon

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Deglassco, (edited ) to random
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Hi folks, I know it’s been awhile since I last posted. I can’t tell you how much I have gotten out of my time on Mastodon this last year I really enjoy engaging with people here. It’s so much more affirming and useful than on that other site. We are all learning from each other and that’s what it’s all about. 1/2

Deglassco,
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2/2 Thank you all so much for your insightful (and abundant) comments and suggestions. I will be back soon! Working to finish up doctoral studies. I’m in the last few months and wrapping up dissertation work and defense. THANK you all. Talk to you soon. D. Elisabeth Glassco

Deglassco, to history
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U.S. Deputy Marshal Bass Reeves was the most feared lawman of the old West. Standing a muscular 6‘2“ tall, he was was relentless and absolutely formidable. Alive or on a stretcher, Reeves always got his man, no matter how long it took, or how arduous the task. No sensible outlaw messed with him. But some fools had to find out the hard way.

1/

To read uninterrupted:
https://open.substack.com/pub/400years/p/wyatt-earp-couldnt-be-a-patch-on?r=1pv9e3&utm_campaign=post&utm_medium=web&showWelcome=true

Image: “Bass Reeves,” by James Loveless.

@blackmastodon @BlackMastodon

Deglassco,
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In the 1870s and 1880s, the Oklahoma Indian Territory was arguably the most dangerous place in the United States, largely due to its unique legal and social circumstances. This region became a haven for outlaws and fugitives from across the country. The lack of a structured legal system and the jurisdictional complexities between federal, tribal, and state authorities created a situation where law enforcement was minimal and often ineffective.

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Image: Map of Oklahoma Indian territory, LOC.

Deglassco,
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The area was rife with violence, including feuds, land disputes, robberies, and other crimes. Outlaws found it relatively easy to hide within the territory's vast, rugged landscapes and among its diverse communities, which included not only Native Americans but also settlers, cowboys, and escaped slaves.

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Image: Choctaw Lighthorse Policemen, circa 1885.

Deglassco,
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The “Five Civilized Tribes” (Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, and Seminole) governed parts of this region, but their authority was limited in dealing with non-tribal members, leading to a sort of legal no-man’s-land.

This lawlessness attracted a variety of criminal elements and made the territory a perilous place for its inhabitants.

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Image: Fort Smith, Arkansas: U.S. Marshal Bass Reeves And His Dog

Deglassco,
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It was into this chaotic environment that figures like Bass Reeves, one of the first Black deputy U.S. marshals to serve west of the Mississippi River, stepped in.

Marshals like Reeves were tasked with bringing order to the region, often facing immense danger as they pursued outlaws through the rugged terrain.

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Image: A lost photo thought to be of Bass Reeves as a young man in the 1870s.

Deglassco, (edited )
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Their efforts were instrumental in gradually establishing law and order in what had been a largely ungoverned and hazardous part of the U.S.

Perhaps the most famous of Bass Reeves' many confrontations with criminals was his intense encounter with Robert “Bob” Dozier. Dozier, initially a farmer, for some inexplicable reason, decided his life as a successful farmer was boring. Thus, he became an outlaw facing numerous accusations in Indian Territory.

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https://youtu.be/C4MNlnrxSMM?si=SyJr_6h9Tq-4FOSu

Deglassco,
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Prior to his criminal activities, Dozier had been a successful farmer. Uniquely among many Oklahoma outlaws of that era, his turn to crime wasn't driven by necessity. Instead, he seemed to have opted for this path, possibly in search of adventure or driven by greed – the exact reasons remain unclear.

7/

Image: A revolver believed to have belonged to Bass Reeves during his time as a Deputy U.S. Marshal. (Photo credit: Arkansas Times)

Deglassco,
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What is clear, however, is that Dozier's transition into a life of crime was as effective as his farming career had been. He demonstrated considerable success in his unlawful endeavors.Dozier was infamous for his heinous crimes, including murder, cattle rustling, armed robbery of banks and stores, acting as a road agent, swindling, and horse thievery.

8/

Image: Cherokee Nation Capitol Building
Tribal headquarters in Park Hill, Oklahoma

Deglassco,
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Essentially, if an activity was both crooked and violent, Bill Dozier was likely involved in it. His reputation as a dangerous and elusive criminal was well-established across the region.

Bass Reeves, who was known for his unmatched tracking abilities, had been on the trail of Dozier for several years.

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Image: U.S. Marshal Bass Reeves sitting for a group photo with other lawmen. Reeves is in the front row, far left, holding a cane.

Deglassco,
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He meticulously studied Dozier's patterns, anticipating his moves, and waiting for the perfect moment to strike.

Alongside another deputy, Reeves embarked on a daunting mission to capture the outlaw. Their relentless pursuit led them deep into the dense thickets of the upper Cherokee Nation, a terrain challenging even for the most experienced lawmen.

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Image: Bass Reeves (encircled) at the cornerstone laying for the first federal court building in Muskogee, Oklahoma, July 1889.

Deglassco,
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As the two marshals navigated a wooded ravine, seeking shelter from a torrential downpour and the chaos of the storm, the atmosphere was tense. It was nearing sundown, and the fading light combined with the flashes of lightning created a surreal and perilous setting. Suddenly, a bullet whistled past Reeves' head, a clear sign that Dozier was near and ready to fight.

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Image: A picture of a hunting party that is believed to show Bass Reeves, standing, on the left-hand side.

Deglassco,
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Through the rain and shadows, Reeves glimpsed a man darting through the trees. Reacting swiftly, he fired two shots, and the shadowy figure collapsed.

However, the danger was far from over. From another direction, more gunfire erupted. Reeves, caught off guard, spun around and fell to the wet ground. He lay motionless, playing dead under the cloak of rain and darkness.

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Image: Bass Reeves stands in the door of a boxcar on the MK&T Railroad.

Deglassco,
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Dozier, believing Reeves to be dead, emerged cautiously from his hiding spot and approached. It was at this moment that Reeves, with a cocked revolver concealed beneath him, sprang up and ordered the outlaw to drop his weapons.

Dozier, caught off guard by Reeves' cunning strategy, was momentarily stunned.

13/

Image: Bass Reeves at the age of 67 in Muskogee on the first day of Oklahoma statehood, November 16, 1907.

Deglassco,
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However, defiant to the end, he made a final attempt to reach for his pistol. But Reeves, ever the quicker draw, shot first.

Dozier was hit by a bullet in the neck and sank to his knees, marking the end of a long and arduous pursuit. The criminal who had terrorized many and eluded justice for so long was finally brought down by Bass Reeves, in a dramatic and deadly finale.

14/

Image: Author Art T. Burton: his book is one of the few detailed historical accounts of Reeves’ life.

Deglassco,
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This episode not only cemented Reeves' status as one of the most formidable marshals of his time but also highlighted his intelligence, bravery, and skill in the line of duty.In the words of Art T. Burton, a former history professor and author, as quoted in his book "Black Gun, Silver Star: The Life and Legend of Frontier Marshal Bass Reeves," Reeves is celebrated as "the greatest frontier hero in American history."

Image: Art T. Burton, author of “Black Gun, Silver Star.”

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Deglassco,
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During his service, Reeves eliminated 14 outlaws and apprehended over 3000, establishing himself as the preeminent lawman of the Old West. Reflecting on this, an old man who, in his youth, had known Bass Reeves said to author Burton about Reeves legacy, “Wyatt Earp couldn’t be a patch on Bass Reeves’ pants.”

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Image: Best Known photo of Bass Reeves, Circa 1870s.

Deglassco,
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Burton further notes, "He walked into the valley of death every day for 32 years. He helped people regardless of their race, their religion or their background his entire life."

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Image: Painting of “Deputy U.S. Marshal Bass Reeves,” by artist, James Loveless.

Deglassco,
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Deglassco,
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Books

Burton, Art T. Black Gun, Silver Star: The Life and Legend of Frontier Marshal Bass Reeves*. University of Nebraska Press.

Burton, Art T. Black, Red and Deadly: Black and Indian Gunfighters of the Indian Territory, 1875–1907*. Austin, TX: Eakin Press, 1991.

Paulsen, Gary. The Legend of Bass Reeves: Being the True and Fictional Account of the Most Valiant Marshal in the West. New York: Wendy Lamb Books, 2006.

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Deglassco,
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More Books

Thompson, Sydney. Follow the Angels, Follow the Doves. The Bass Reeves Trilogy, Book One. Bison Books, March 2020.

Thompson, Sydney. Hell on the Border. The Bass Reeves Trilogy, Book Two. Bison Books, April 2021.

Thompson, Sydney. The Forsaken and the Dead. The Bass Reeves Trilogy, Book Three. Bison Books, October 2023.

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davidnjoku, to random
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I don't think I've seen even one video of a white woman Karening since I moved to Mastodon.

Have we fixed racism? Go us!

Deglassco,
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Deglassco, (edited ) to blackmastodon
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For Bass Reeves, one of the first Black lawmen in the West, life was fraught with dangers. Not only did he have to contend with the usual risks, but he also had to navigate a society rife with racism and discrimination.

1/

Image: “Bass Reeves” by Jack Sorenson

If you want to read uninterrupted text:
https://open.substack.com/pub/400years/p/even-more-brave-than-we-imagined?r=1pv9e3&utm_campaign=post&utm_medium=web

Video:
https://youtube.com/

Video 2:
https://youtube.com/@BlackBiographics?si=ZnkcUTxTqLClBetS

Image: "Bass Reeves, Lawman" Jack Sorenson

@blackmastodon @BlackMastodon

Deglassco,
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@taatm me too!

Deglassco,
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@Beachhart indeed!

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