this day in crime history: february 18, 1878

On this date in 1878, 24 year old John Henry Tunstall, an English-born rancher, was shot and killed in Lincoln County, NM. Tunstall’s men, including a young upstart who came to be known as Billy the Kid, vowed revenge. And thus began New Mexico’s Lincoln County War.

Further reading:

Legends of America – New Mexico’s Lincoln County War

The Death of John Tunstall

Wikipedia – John Tunstall

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4 thoughts on “this day in crime history: february 18, 1878

  1. John D.:
    Nie to know WHERE (and how) BUIlly the Kid got his “start”…
    Very interesting links, too.
    A COUNTY war?
    They did some strange stuff back then.

    Good story.

    Stay safe & warm out there.

    Like

  2. It probably didn’t help Billy the Kid’s mood when he and his Indian friend Fred Waite were taken hostage by Sheriff Brady (who swore in the posse that murdered Tunstall) and held for over 24 hours. He and his pals would get their revenge on April Fools Day, when they gave Brady a one way ticket to Boot Hill.

    Like

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