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Hy-Yo Silver!! The Lone Ranger was Pretty Much a Real person!

Hy-Yo Silver!! The Lone Ranger was Pretty Much a Real person!
February 08
15:56 2021

The real deal: Bass Reeves

Did you know that the Lone Ranger was based on a real lawman?

That man was U.S. Deputy Marshal Bass Reeves!

Reeves was born a slave in 1838. When the Civil War broke out, Reeves’ master enlisted and brought his slave with him. The details are unclear but somehow Reeves managed to escape during the war.

He fled to Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma) and lived among the Cherokees, Creeks and Seminoles. Reeves learned their languages and made many friends.

After the 13th Amendment abolished slavery Reeves moved back to Arkansas, where he was born. He became a successful farmer. Married twice, he had 11 children.

In 1875 Isaac Parker was appointed a federal judge based out of Fort Smith, Ark. Parker was serious about fighting crime and became known as The Hanging Judge.

The western part of Arkansas was a hotbed for crime because of its proximity to Indian Territory. Local sheriffs could not pursue outlaws there because it was federal territory. Though the Indians had tribal police they had no jurisdiction over white men. This combination had Oklahoma a haven for bad men, such as the Dalton and Doolin gangs.

Reeves was appointed a deputy marshal because he knew the land and could speak the tribal language. He was the first black deputy west of the Mississippi River.

Reeves served as a lawman for 32 years, bringing in more than 3,000 vicious criminals over that span. Though he once had his hat shot off his head – and a bullet striking his belt buckle – Reeves was never wounded.

Reeves killed 14 outlaws who decided to shoot it out with the officer rather than surrender. Bass Reeves was an excellent marksman with pistol or rifle.

Reeves also used detective work to track down lawbreakers, sometimes using disguises to get close tp his prey.

Of all the men Reeves apprehended, none was more heart-wrenching than when had to bring in his own son for murder.

Age finally caught up with Reeves in 1909 and he retired after one of the most successful – and underappreciated – careers  among Old West lawmen.

He didn’t have long to enjoy retirement, though. Reeves died of Bright’s Disease on January 12, 1910.

Featured Photo (CBS): Actors Jay Silverheels and Clayton Moore

Hy-Yo Silver!! The Lone Ranger was Pretty Much a Real person! - overview

Summary: Hy-Yo Silver!! The Lone Ranger was Pretty Much a Real person!


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