Jesse James

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Jesse James
Jesse Woodson James
BirthplaceKearney, Missouri, U.S.
Known for Robbery

James, Jesse (Woodson),

1847–82, American outlaw, b. Clay co., Mo. At the age of 15 he joined the Confederate guerrilla band led by William QuantrillQuantrill, William Clarke
, 1837–65, Confederate guerrilla leader, b. Canal Dover (now Dover), Ohio. In the Civil War his band of guerrillas was active in Missouri and Kansas. He was given the rank of captain in the Confederate army. On Aug.
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 and participated in the brutal and bloody civil warfare in Kansas and Missouri. In 1866, Jesse and his brother Frank became the leaders of a band of outlaws whose trail of robberies and murders led through most of the central states. At first they robbed only banks, but in 1873 they began to rob trains. The beginning of their downfall came in 1876 when, after killing two people and failing to secure any money in an attempted bank robbery at Northfield, Minn., they lost several members of the gang, including the Younger brothers, three of their most trusted followers, who were captured and imprisoned (see Younger, ColeYounger, Cole
(Thomas Coleman Younger), 1844–1916, American outlaw, b. Jackson co., Mo. After the Civil War he joined the outlaw band of Jesse James, with whom he had served as a Confederate guerrilla under William C. Quantrill.
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). The James brothers escaped and were quiet until 1879, when they robbed another train. The reward offered by Gov. Thomas T. Crittenden of Missouri for the capture of the James brothers, dead or alive, tempted one of the gang, Robert Ford, who caught Jesse (then living under the name of Thomas Howard) off guard and killed him. Frank James surrendered but was twice acquitted and lived out his life peacefully and prosperously on his farm near Excelsior Springs, Mo. The melodramatic style of the exploits of the James gang attracted wide public admiration, giving rise to a number of romanticized legends, the famous song "The Ballad of Jesse James," and much popular literature.


See biographies by R. Love (1926), C. W. Breihan (1953, repr. 1970), and T. J. Stiles (2002); H. Croy, Jesse James Was My Neighbor (1949, repr. 1962); J. L. James, Jesse James and the Lost Cause (1961); W. A. Settle, Jesse James Was His Name (1966); M. L. Gardner, Shot All To Hell: Jesse James, the Northfield Raid, and the Wild West's Greatest Escape (2013).

James, Jesse

(1847–1882) romanticized train and bank robber. [Am. Hist.: Flexner, 219]

James, Jesse

(1847–1882) American outlaw of the Wild West. [Am. Hist.: NCE, 1395]
References in periodicals archive ?
It is interesting to note that the detective and Jesse James share some character traits even though on opposite sides of the law.
This article sets aside the "historical Jesse" to examine the narrative myth or symbol of Jesse James in some of its most recent popular cultural developments.
They didn't just make Jesse James and Buffalo Bill into stars, they also made Belle Starr into a star.
Write you answer on a postcard or the back of a sealed envelope and send it, together with your name, address and daytime telephone number, to Jesse James competition, Birmingham Post Features Department, Weaman Street, Birmingham, B4 6AT.
Prize is a five-night holiday to USA for two adults worth pounds 2000 including return economy class fights from Scotland to Kansas City (not direct), 3-star hotel on room-only basis sharing twin room, six days self drive car hire vehicle insurance including crash damage waiver (driver must be over 25 with clean current UK driving licence), entrance to Jesse James museum, farm and family home, standard travel insurance (excludes pre-existing medical conditions).
So he's best cast as a glamorous psychopath, such as Tyler Durden in "Fight Club," Achilles in "Troy," and now as the intuitive, mercurial gunman Jesse James.
CUTLINE: Casey Affleck, left, and Brad Pitt in "The Assassination of Jesse James.
Casey Affleck, left, is Robert Ford, and Brad Pitt is Jesse James in the ponderous "The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford.
The movie is titled The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, and it closely follows the 1983 book by Ron Hansen.
If you were anywhere near Winnipeg last October you cannot have failed to notice that part of a major Hollywood movie entitled The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford was being filmed in the Exchange District.
The episode has been recalled and retold in Canada about as often as the Jesse James story has in the US, and with much the same fascination.