Black Bart Title

California's Infamous Stage Robber


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STAGE COACH ROBBERIES

Wells Fargo Box
Black Barts stage robbery career lasted just over eight years. It started on July 26, 1875 and ended with the final robbery on November 3,1883. Black Bart was arrested on November 12,1883 in San Francisco by detectives Harry Morse and James Hume. Believe it or not, Morse had lured Bart to the Wells Fargo office where Hume was waiting. Black Bart was credited with 28 robberies. Just 18 days after his last robbery, Bart had been captured, tried, convicted and sentenced. On November 21, 1883 Charles Boles, aka Charles Bolton, aka Black Bart entered San Quentin prison.



  1.   July 26, 1875. Calaveras County at Funk Hill; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: John Shine. Sonora to Milton stage.
  2.   December 28, 1875. Yuba County, four miles from Smartville. Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: Mike Hogan. San Juan to Marysville stage.
  3.   June 2, 1876. Siskiou County, five miles north of Cottonwood; Wells Fargo Box and mail; a nighttime robbery. Driver: A.C. Adams. Roseburg, Oregon to Yreka stage.
  4.   August 3, 1877. Sonoma County, four miles from Fort Ross; Wells Fargo box and mail; first poem left here. Driver: Milt Watson or George Brereton. Point Arena to Duncan's Mills stage.
  5.   July 25, 1878. Butte County, one mile from Berry Creek Sawmill; Wells Fargo box and mail; second poem left here. Driver: Ash Williamson or Jack Morrison. Quincy to Oroville stage
  6.   July 30, 1878. Plumas County, five miles from LaPorte; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: D.E. Barry. La Porte to Oroville stage.
  7.   October 2, 1878. Mendocino County, twelve miles from Ukiah; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: Alec Fowler. Cahto to Ukiah stage.
  8.   October 3, 1878. Mendocino County, ten miles from Potter Valley; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: Nate Waltrip. Covelo to Ukiah stage.
  9.   June 21, 1879. Butte County, three miles from Forbes Town; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: Dave Quadlin. La Porte to Oroville stage.
  10.   October 25, 1879. Shasta County, enroute to Buckeye; Wells Fargo box and mail; nighttime robbery. Driver: Jim Smithson. Roseburg, Oregon to Redding stage.
  11.   October 27, 1879. Shasta County, twelve miles from Millville; Wells Fargo Box and mail. Driver: Ed Payne. Alturas to Redding stage.
  12.   September 1, 1880. Shasta County, near Last Chance Station; Wells Fargo Box and mail. Driver: Charles Cramer. Weaverville to Redding stage.
  13.   September 16, 1880. Jackson County, Oregon; Wells Fargo Box and mail. Driver: George Chase. Roseburg to Redding stage.
  14.   September 23, 1880. Jackson County, Oregon three mile from California state line; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: George Chase. Roseburg to Yreka stage.
  15.   November 20, 1880. Siskiyou County, one mile from Oregon border; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: Joe Mason. Roseburg to Redding stage.
  16.   August 31, 1881. Siskiyou County, ten miles from Yreka; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: John Sullaway. Roseburg to Yreka stage.
  17.   October 11, 1881. Shasta County, fourteen miles from Redding; Wells Fargo box; nighttime robbery. Driver: Horace Williams. Yreka to Redding stage.
  18.   October 11, 1881. Shasta County, at Montgomery Creek; Wells Fargo box. Driver: Lewis Brewster. Lakeview to Redding stage.
  19.   December 15, 1881. Yuba County, four miles east of Dobbins; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: George Sharpe. Downieville to Marysville stage.
  20.   December 27, 1881. Nevada County, at Bridgeport; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: Luther Sherman. North San Juan to Smartsville stage.
  21.   January 26, 1882 Mendocino County, six miles from Cloverdale; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: Harry Forse. Ukiah to Cloverdale stage.
  22.   June 14, 1882. Mendocino County, two miles from Little Lake; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: Thomas B. Forse. Little Lake to Ukiah stage (There is some question that Bart committed this robbery).
  23.   July 13, 1882 1. Plumas County, five miles from LaPorte; Bart shot; nothing taken. Driver: George Helms, Messenger: George W. Hackett. La Porte to Oroville stage. Bart wounded on this robbery.
  24.   September 17, 1882. Shasta County, at Bass Hill; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: Horace Willims. Yreka to Redding stage.
  25.   November 23, 1882. Sonoma County, five miles from Cloverdale; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: Dick Crawford. Lakeport to Cloverdale stage.
  26.   April 12, 1883. Sonoma County, five miles from Cloverdale; Wells Fargo box and mail. Driver: Bill Connibeck. La Porte to Cloverdale stage.
  27.   June 23, 1883. Amador County, four miles from Jackson; Wells Fargo Box and mail. Driver: Clint Radcliffe. Jackson to Ione City stage.
  28.   November 3, 1883. Calaveras County, at Funk Hill; Wells Fargo box and mail; Bart shot. Driver: Reason E. McConnell. Sonora to Milton stage.

There was another robbery they tried to pin on Bart, but he did not do it.

July 22, 1880. Sonoma County, three miles from Henry's Hotel; Wells Fargo Box and mail. Driver: Martin McClennan. Weaverville to Redding stage.

1   Among the many myths around Bart is the one that says Bart lost his derby hat at this robbery and the laundry mark FXO7 was found in it and that led to his capture, more folklore. The laundry mark that eventually led to his capture first came light after the last robbery on November 3, 1883.


At the fourth and fifth robberies Black Bart left behind poems.

At the fourth robbery:

"I've labored long and hard for bread,
For honor and for riches
But on my corns too long you've tread,
You fine-haired sons-of-bitches.
Black Bart, the P o 8"

At the fifth robbery:

"To wait the coming morrow,
Perhaps success, perhaps defeat
And everlasting sorrow.
Yet come what will, I'll try it once,
My conditions can't be worse,
But if there's money in that box,
It's munny in my purse.
Black Bart, the P o 8"

Note:
A little know fact is that on the first poem there was also a note scribbled under the verse. The poem and the note had each line written in a different hand. It is thought that Bart did this to disguise his handwriting.

The note reads:
Driver, give my respects to our old friend, the other driver. I really had a notion to hang my old disguise hat on his weather eye.




This is a picture of a four horse stage coach similar to the ones that Black Bart robbed.

This picture was taken at Pescadero, California.

Pescadero Stage
Photo courtesy Wells Fargo Historical Services
and cannot be reproduced without their permission.




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