Dutch Henry Born: Wild West legend

Photo courtesy John M. Motter
Last week our photograph featured Fil Byrne and Henry Gordon as young men in full western regalia with drawn six shooters. Today’s photograph shows the same two in the same pose, now old men without six shooters but with lots of shared memories.

This week we quote from the Dodge hometown newspaper starting with the headline: “CAUGHT AT LAST. The Renowned Dutch Henry, the Outlaw Chief, Has Fallen.”
“Hearing that the great king of outlaws was in the hands of the Las Animas officers at Trinidad, Sheriff Masterson went up last Wednesday to see what he could see, and, if possible, secure the prisoner and bring him to Ford county to answer for the many ‘irregularities’ in his conduct toward the owners of horseflesh in this vicinity.”
The following is from the Trinidad Enterprise, which explains what action was taken there:
“‘Dutch Henry,’ the man who seems to be wanted in different states for a variety of crimes, such as horse-stealing, mail robbery, and even murder, and of whose arrest here we gave account in yesterday’s Enterprise, was brought before Judge Walker to-day upon complaint of Sheriff Wootton, that he is a fugitive from justice in Ford county, Kansas, charged and indicted for grand larceny. The sheriff of Ford County, Mr. W.B. Masterson of Dodge City, was present as witness. Mr. Caldwell Yeaman appeared for the prosecution, and Mr. Salisbury for the defense. We learn that in the course of the proceedings there was some sparring between one of the attorneys and the visiting sheriff from Dodge, in which the legal gentlemen became considerable excited by unwarrantable mention of ‘unmentionable’ matters by the witness. Now it is generally the witness who gets badgered and excited, and it may be well enough for gentlemen of the legal persuasion to happen upon a witness who can give them an opportunity to know how it is themselves. The result of the examination was that ‘deutcher Heinrich’ was bound over to appear at the March term of the district court, and it was ordered that in default of bail he shall be confined in the Bent county jail. A notice was made by the prisoner’s counsel that the case be referred to Judge Chambers at Pueblo, and Justice Walker took the matter under advisement. ‘Dutch Henry’ is rather a genteel looking man for a horse-thief, road-agent, and murderer. He has black hair and eyes, black mustache, long face, and Roman nose. His eyes are bright and penetrating, and indicate quick intelligence. He is dressed in a good suit of black, white shirt, and other corresponding clothing.”
Next week, we’ll report Sheriff Masterson’s arrival in Dodge City with Dutch Henry in tow.

This story was posted on January 13, 2019.