Did the last hanging in the Old West take place in Santa Rosa, California?

Jim Wyllie
Santa Rosa, California

I believe you’re referring to San Francisco’s notorious Howard Street Gang, whose members were lynched for killing three lawmen. George Boyd, Terry Fitts and Charles Valento were hanged in Santa Rosa on December 10, 1920. With the town’s history dating to the 1830s, that’s long after its frontier era.

The last legal hanging in the U.S. was in Delaware in 1996—although that form of execution is still a possibility in New Hampshire and Washington state.

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