Don’t let ’em pick guitars and drive them old trucks.
Make ’em be doctors and lawyers and such…”
September 23, 1892
“Well”, said Willie, “me an’ Bob here has been readin’ all about them robbers, Evans an’ Sontager, and we made up our minds to get a gun what they couldn’t hear shoot an’ go an’ kill ‘em.” Then the bantam weight buckaroo went on to explain his plan, “Don’t you see we’s nuthin’ but kids, and they would never take us fur Smithsonian detectives…we’ve got this thing studied out.”
The officer saw Willie’s point, but marched the wee manhunter home anyway, where he was met at the door by his mother. She was slapping a mean looking slipper against the palm of her hand.
It’s just as well that Willie and Bob never got the chance to put their plan into action, as Chris Evans and John Sontag were wanted for train robbery and murder, and they were unlikely to have been felled by an air rifle. In fact, they’d already survived a shoot out with one posse, and it would take at least one more to bring them to justice. Due mainly to the support of people in the
John Sontag near death as posse looks on.
Neither children nor Pinkerton Detectives ended up capturing Evans and Sontag. On May 28, 1893, the bandits were surrounded by a posse of local lawmen, and a furious gun battle ensued. Both men were wounded. Sontag died of his injuries, but Evans managed to escape. He came upon the home of Mrs. Parsons, who invited him in, and then dressed his wounds and put him to bed. Evans knew that his career as a train robber had ended, and he agreed to let Mrs. Parsons turn him in to the law if she would agree to split the reward she received with his wife – which she promptly did.
While Evans was awaiting trial, his wife and daughter were contacted by a
The story doesn’t end there. Evans managed to escape from jail before he could be transported to Folsom Prison. After a brief taste of freedom, he was recaptured. Evans served his time and was released in 1911. He died in a state hospital a few weeks later.
Here’s hoping that young Willie chose to become a doctor or lawyer, or such.