November 30

This Day in History

Old West

Nov 30, 1902:

Harvey "Kid Curry" Logan sentenced

Harvey "Kid Curry" Logan, the second-in-command in Butch Cassidy's Wild Bunch crew, is sentenced to 20 years hard labor in a Tennessee prison. Though the famous Hollywood movie Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid portrayed Harry Longabaugh as Cassidy's main partner, Logan was his true sidekick and right-hand man.

Logan was born in Kentucky but spent most of his youth in Missouri. According to legend, he killed a man when he was 19 and was, thereafter, always on the wrong side of the law. On his own or with occasional accomplices, Logan became proficient at robbing banks and killing innocent people, which inevitably attracted the interest of law officers.

He eventually sought refuge in the isolated Hole-in-the-Wall hideouts of Wyoming. The Hole-in-the-Wall was a sparsely populated region of rugged mountains whose remote location attracted outlaws who were trying to lay low and avoid the law. Here, Logan made the acquaintance of a former butcher turned outlaw named Robert Leroy Parker, better known as Butch Cassidy. Cassidy and Logan became the informal leaders of a loose collection of outlaws called the Wild Bunch, which included Longabaugh, Ben Kilpatrick (Tall Texan), and a cast of other motley characters.

For several years, the Wild Bunch was one of the more successful criminal operations in the West, robbing banks and trains in Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, Montana, Nevada, and New Mexico, and successfully defending their Wyoming hideout from the law. The Wild Bunch even hired its own lawyer to defend its gang members, and their file in the Chicago offices of the Pinkerton Detective Agency became one of the thickest in the agency's cabinets.

Inevitably, though, the law and the Pinkertons began to close in on the gang. In 1901, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid fled the country for Bolivia, and no one is certain what became of them. The evidence for Logan's fate is much clearer: most historians believe that after escaping from a Knoxville prison in June of 1903, he fled to Colorado, where it is believed he was wounded by pursuers and shot himself dead.

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