Henry Starr

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Henry Starr
A Debtor to the Law.jpg
Poster for A Debtor to the Law (1919)
BornHenry Starr
(1873-12-02)December 2, 1873
Fort Gibson, Oklahoma
DiedFebruary 22, 1921(1921-02-22) (aged 47)
near Harrison, Arkansas

Henry Starr (1873–1921) was an American criminal of the wild west and an American actor of the silent film era.


Starr was a horse thief and train robber. He was also convicted of murder once, in the killing of U.S. Deputy Marshal Floyd Wilson on December 13, 1892. Starr claimed in court to not have known he was a U.S. Marshal and only to know that a man had opened fire on him without provocation. Distantly related to Sam Starr, husband of Belle Starr, he was the last in a long line of Starr family criminals. Twice sentenced by Judge Isaac Parker to hang for murder, he managed to escape the noose due to technicalities and went on to form a notorious gang that terrorized and robbed throughout northwest Arkansas around the start of the 20th century. He was imprisoned in 1915, wrote his memoirs and even portrayed himself in the silent film, A Debtor to the Law (1919). He was killed by W.J. Myers with a .38 caliber Winchester rifle (1873 model) while attempting to rob a bank in Harrison, Arkansas, in 1921. Henry Starr was the first bank robber to use a car for his getaway in the United States, in Harrison. For decades afterward, Starr supporters targeted the by-then blind W.J. Myers and his family. Myers' grandson was targeted for kidnapping and ransom.