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PATRICK F. "BIG CASINO" GARRETT - TYPED LETTER SIGNED 04/01/1897 - HFSID 314414

 
PAT GARRETT
"The man who killed Billy the Kid" endorses a candidate running for governor of the New Mexico Territory. Extremely rare and highly desirable!
Typed Letter Signed: "P. H. Garrett/The man who killed Billy the Kid," 1 page, 8½x11. Santa Fe, New Mexico April 1st, 1897. Typed on the letterhead of W.T. Horton, Governor of the Territory of New Mexico, Executive Department. To Hon. George H. Wallace, in full: "If the enclosed letter is of any service to you please accept the same with my best wishes that you may be speedily appointed. I know whereof I speak when I say that New Mexico will continue to need as her chief executive a man who will uphold the law and discharge his duty without fear or favor, and I believe I make no mistake in in giving you my qualified indorsement. Very truly yours." Garrett (1850-1908) is best known for killing the outlaw Billy the Kid. Garrett was elected sheriff of Lincoln County, New Mexico in 1880. As Sheriff, he captured his onetime friend Billy the Kid, who had been accused of murder. The Kid killed two guards and escaped from jail just before he was to be hanged. On July 14, 1881, Garrett caught up with him at Fort Sumner, a military post near the town of Fort Sumner, New Mexico and shot him to death from ambush in a darkened house. It was in Fort Sumner that he met and married Apolonaria Gutierrez, with whom he had nine children. In April 1882, Garrett published The Authentic Life of Billy the Kid. He lost the next election for Sheriff of Lincoln County. In 1884, he ran for the territorial Senate and lost. He moved from Lincoln County to Tascosa, a settlement on the Canadian River, in the Texas Panhandle. He served as Captain of a unit of Texas Rangers that Texas Governor John Ireland had assigned to protect ranchers from cattle rustlers. Within weeks, Garrett quit the Texas Rangers and returned to southeastern New Mexico, this time to Roswell. He set up a scheme to irrigate the desert in an area with impoverished soil and bad water. In 1890, Garrett ran for Sheriff of Chavez County, which had been carved out of Lincoln County, with Roswell as the new county seat. He lost. In 1891, he moved to Uvalde, a community in south Texas where he raised and raced horses with 22-year-old John Nance Garner, future vice president of the United States under FDR (1933-1941), before becoming deputy sheriff and then sheriff of Doña Ana County, New Mexico (1896-1902) and collector of customs in El Paso, Texas (1902-1906). Pat Garrett was shot to death by rancher Wayne Brazel near Las Cruces, New Mexico because of a land dispute. A witness supported Brazel's claim of self-defense. Brazel was tried and found not guilty but people generally suspected that it was murder since Garrett's body showed a bullet in the back of the head as well as one in the stomach. Normal mailing folds. Toned. Otherwise, fine condition.


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PATRICK F. GARRETT  


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PATRICK F. GARRETT
Born: June 5, 1850 in Cusseta, Alabama
Died: February 29, 1908 in Las Cruces, New Mexico





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