Arkansas Tom

arkansas-tom-blogOklahoma and the Indian Territory provided some of the West’s wildest history including one of its deadliest gunfights. The battle occurred on September 1st, 1893 at Ingalls, Oklahoma.  When the smoke cleared six men were dead and several others wounded.

The so-called “Battle of Ingalls” began when a large posse invaded the town in attempt to capture the Bill Doolin gang.

The gang, which included Doolin, Bill Dalton, “Bittercreek” Newcomb, “Dynamite Dick” Clifton, “Tulsa Jack” Blake and “Arkansas Tom” Jones were holed up in a local hotel. The latter was upstairs when the fight began giving him an aerial view of the action. He rained gunfire down on the posse allowing the other five to escape. Faced with either surrendering or being blown up with dynamite he finally threw in the towel. Charged with manslaughter Arkansas Tom was sentenced to fifty years but was released in less than twenty.

Like several other outlaws, Arkansas Tom, whose real name was Roy Daugherty, went to Hollywood to act in western movies. He appeared in “The Passing of the Oklahoma Outlaws.” Apparently he preferred the real deal and soon returned to robbing banks.  He robbed a bank in Neosho, Missouri in 1917, was caught and returned to prison. Released in 1921, he robbed another one in Asbury, Missouri. Lawmen caught up with him on August 16th, 1924 at friend Red Snow’s home in Joplin, Missouri. A furious gunfight ensued and Arkansas Tom was shot and killed after his pistol jammed. Nearby was Snow’s child, howling with fright. Many outlaws died robbing banks and trains but at least one died while babysitting.

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