Charles Ford (outlaw)
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Charles Wilson Ford
|Died||May 6, 1884 (aged 26)|
|Cause of death||Suicide by gunshot|
Charles Wilson "Charley" Ford (July 9, 1857 – May 6, 1884) was an outlaw, and member of the James Gang. He was the lesser known brother of Robert Ford, the killer of Jesse James. Charlie Ford was introduced to Jesse and Frank James by Wood Hite and he joined the gang.
In 1882 Jesse James recruited Robert and Charles Ford to help with a planned robbery of another bank. Thomas T. Crittenden offered $10,000 for the capture of Jesse James, and on April 3, 1882, Robert Ford shot Jesse James. He and Charles Ford were convicted and were sentenced to be hanged, but were pardoned by Crittenden.
Two years later, after a period of deep depression following James' death, terminal illness from tuberculosis, and a debilitating morphine addiction, Charles Ford died by suicide on May 6, 1884.
Charles Ford was one of the eleven Ford children born to James Thomas Ford and Mary Ann Bruin:
- Sarah J. Ford (b. abt. 1841)
- Georgiana Ford (b. abt. 1843)
- Mary T. Ford (b. abt. 1845)
- John Thomas Ford (b: November 6, 1847)
- Martha Elizabeth Ford (b: April 22, 1849)
- Harriet Ford (b. abt. 1851)
- Elias Capline Ford (b: July 10, 1853)
- Amanda Francis Ford (b: April 1, 1855)
- Charles Wilson Ford (b: July 9, 1857)
- Wilber Pottuck Ford (b: November 19, 1859)
- Robert Newton Ford (b: January 31, 1862)
In popular culture
- Paul Frees portrayed Charley Ford on the CBS radio show Crime Classics on July 20, 1953 in the episode entitled "The Death of a Picture Hanger."
- Frank Gorshin played Ford in the 1957 film The True Story of Jesse James.
- Christopher Guest stars as Ford in 1980's western film The Long Riders.
- Alexis Arquette portrayed Ford in the 1994 film Frank & Jesse.
- Charles Ford is played by Sam Rockwell in the 2007 film The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, based on the novel by Ron Hansen.
- Charlie Ford is mentioned in the Grateful Dead song “Tennessee Jed.”
- Beights, Ronald H. (2005). Jesse James and the First Missouri Train Robbery. Gretna: Pelican Publishing. p. 171. ISBN 9781455606658.
- Stiles, T. J. (2002). Jesse James: Last Rebel of the Civil War. A.A. Knopf. pp. 363–375. ISBN 0-375-40583-6.
- Yeatman, Ted P. (2000). Frank and Jesse James: The Story Behind the Legend. Cumberland House. pp. 264–269. ISBN 1-58182-325-8.
- McCoy, Max (October 14, 2016). Jesse: A Novel of the Outlaw Jesse James. Speaking Volumes. p. 190. ISBN 9781628155334.
- Miller, Wilbur R. (June 19, 2012). The Social History of Crime and Punishment in America: A-De. SAGE Publications. p. 874. ISBN 9781412988766.
- Mault, Deena (February 27, 2006). "[Ford] Robert and Charles Ford ancestors". RootsWeb. Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on September 3, 2017. Retrieved June 3, 2014.
- "Charlie Ford's Funeral". St. Louis Globe-Democrat. May 8, 1884.
- Braudy, Leo (2002). "Westerns and the Myth of the Past". The World in a Frame: What We See in Films (25th Anniversary ed.). University of Chicago Press. p. 138. ISBN 9780226071565.
- Pallot, James (1995). The Movie Guide. Berkeley Publishing Group. p. 493. ISBN 9780399519147.
- Craddock, Jim (2006). Videohound's Golden Movie Retriever. Cengage Gale. p. 333. ISBN 9780787689803.
- Dargis, Manohla (September 21, 2007). "Good, Bad or Ugly: A Legend Shrouded in Gunsmoke Remains Hazy". The New York Times. Retrieved November 24, 2017.
- The Complete List of Old West Outlaws - Last Name Begins with E-G(bottom of page)
- "Suicide of Charles Ford". New York Times. May 7, 1884. p. 5. Retrieved November 29, 2008.
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