Lives and Exploits of the Daring Frank and Jesse James


Thaddeus Thorndike's Graphic and Realistic Description of their Many Deeds of Unparalleled Daring in the Robbing of Banks and Railroad Trains

Originally published in 1909, Thaddeus Thorndike’s sensational bestseller describes the lives and exploits of the James gang, particularly Jesse James (1847–1882) and his elder brother Frank James (1843–1915). The James brothers’ parents were Kentuckians who moved to Clay County, Missouri, where Jesse was born, and he and his brother Frank joined Confederate guerrillas, Quantrill’s Raiders, in the Civil War. In 1866 James formed a robber band, robbing banks and eventually trains in Missouri and nearby states. In the time the gang existed, it made off with an estimated total of $500,000. It was said that Jesse was “chivalrous to women and good to the old and poor,” which earned him a Robin Hood reputation. Using the name Tom Howard, he died in St. Joseph, Missouri, at the hands of Robert Ford, a member of his band. This edition makes this long-out-of-print work again available to the general public and has been edited by Dr. Tolzmann with up-to-date information about the James brothers and the legends surrounding them. Dr. Tolzmann’s grandfather briefly crossed paths with the James gang in Minnesota in 1876, and an account of that incident is included. Editor’s commentary provides aid to further research, and the text is illustrated with portraits, engravings, and line drawings.

Don Heinrich Tolzmann

(1909, 1992), 2016, 5½x8½, paper, 242 pp.

ISBN: 9781556135934