The Twice-Hanged, Headless Hooch

Twich Hanged Headless HoochOn April 19, 1908 in Skidoo, California, a bartender named Joe “Hooch” Simpson gunned down the town banker, Jim Arnold and robbed him of $20. Three days later a lynch mob hanged Hooch from a telegraph pole. That same telegraph line attached to the pole sent the news to the outside world and two days later reporter from the Los Angeles Times showed up to take a photograph but by the time he arrived ol’ Hooch was already “pushing up daisies.” But that didn’t stop the locals who accommodated him by digging up Hooch, brushing the dirt off and hanging him again.

It was said Hooch was a frequent guest of the red light district in Skidoo prompting the town doctor cut his head off to test it for syphilis, thinking that might be the cause of his sudden madness.

It’s said the twice-hanged, headless Hooch still wanders the hills in Death Valley where all that remains of Skidoo is a historical marker. Old Skidoo is located near the metropolis of Stovepipe Wells.

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