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Law And Order


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Law And Order

  1. 1. Law and Order Revision
  2. 2. Overview <ul><li>Law and order problems were caused by 2 systems of government </li></ul><ul><li>The rapid development of the west after 1840 added to lawlessness </li></ul><ul><li>The ‘Wild West’ was eventually tamed and outlaws and range wars ended </li></ul>
  3. 3. How was law enforced in the early days? <ul><li>Law and order was shared between the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT in Washington and the various states who could appoint a governor and government </li></ul><ul><li>60,000 needed to become a state </li></ul><ul><li>Until then all officials appointed and dealt with by Washington </li></ul><ul><li>What problems will this cause? </li></ul>
  4. 4. Sheriffs and Marshals <ul><li>US (Federal) Marshals had authority over all territories and states </li></ul><ul><li>States were sub-divided into counties and towns with their law officers </li></ul><ul><li>Sheriffs in counties and Marshals in towns </li></ul><ul><li>What problems were there in the early years? </li></ul>
  5. 5. The Wild West? Why were there law and order problems? <ul><li>According to films the west was lawless with gangs and fights everywhere </li></ul><ul><li>Exaggerated because as settlements grew the west settled down. However, </li></ul><ul><li>Decisions from Washington were slow </li></ul><ul><li>The size of areas to cover </li></ul><ul><li>The speed of settlement AND </li></ul><ul><li>Shortage of law officers </li></ul><ul><li>Corrupt law officers </li></ul><ul><li>The nature of the settlers especially in mining areas (Dodge City) and cow towns (Abilene) </li></ul>
  6. 6. How did people deal with the problems? <ul><li>Miners developed their own courts </li></ul><ul><li>Some areas formed ‘Vigilance committees’ who took law and order into their own hands </li></ul><ul><li>Their punishments included lynching </li></ul><ul><li>Why were they a force for good and bad? </li></ul>
  7. 7. What about gangs? <ul><li>The problems made it relatively easy for people to break the law </li></ul><ul><li>There were several infamous gunslingers and gangs (see other ppt!) </li></ul><ul><li>There were female outlaws too such as Belle Star </li></ul><ul><li>Sometimes wealthy cattlemen hires gangs to deal with their disputes with homesteaders </li></ul>
  8. 8. Why were there disputes? <ul><li>Over open range versus fencing </li></ul><ul><li>Destruction of crops by cattle </li></ul><ul><li>Land ownership </li></ul><ul><li>Water access and rights </li></ul>
  9. 9. What disputes were there? <ul><li>Lincoln County war in 1892, New Mexico. This was between John Chisum an owner of a small ranch and Lawrence Murphy, a small rancher </li></ul><ul><li>In 1892 the Johnson County War in Wyoming between the homesteaders and the cattle ranchers </li></ul>
  10. 10. What happened? <ul><li>The cattle boom was over. Cattle ranchers in Wyoming blamed their problems on homesteaders whose barbed wire fences ended open range </li></ul><ul><li>It began with a dispute over land ownership between a rancher (A.J.Bothwell) and a storekeeper (Jim Averill). Jim lived with a prostitute (Ella Watson) who was often paid with cows which she then re-branded! </li></ul><ul><li>Bothwell accused them of rustling and they were lynched. </li></ul><ul><li>Neither Bothwell or the lynchers were ever brought to trial </li></ul>
  11. 11. How did it descend to war? <ul><li>The cattlemen drew up a list of 70 farmers they believed to be rustlers and hire a vigilante group (the Regulators) to sort them out. </li></ul><ul><li>The railroad laid on a special train to get them to Wyoming! </li></ul><ul><li>The Regulators killed two alleged rustlers (Nate Champion and Nick Ray) </li></ul><ul><li>A large posse of local people came to deal with the vigilantes who holed up at a ranch called the TA </li></ul>
  12. 12. What happened next? <ul><li>More locals surrounded the ranch – about 250 men were prepared to kill the Regulators </li></ul><ul><li>The ranchers (very powerful) via the Governor appealed for help and the army were sent in and were able to bring the stand off to a peaceful end </li></ul><ul><li>NO prosecutions were ever brought </li></ul>
  13. 13. How were law and order problems solved? <ul><li>Better communication – railroad and telegraph </li></ul><ul><li>More families moved west and were not prepared to tolerate lawlessness </li></ul><ul><li>More territories became states and so important decisions were not made hundreds of miles away </li></ul><ul><li>Surroundings improved as shanty towns gave way to proper towns </li></ul>