Bass Reeves: Legendary Deputy Marshal of Oklahoma

We’ve profiled exceptional lawmen and women before, but as the first of several articles highlighting the contributions of African-Americans to our country’s law enforcement and judicial systems, today we wanted to introduce you to an impressive and unlikely figures we’ve encountered: someone who would take even famed criminal-catchers John Shaft and Axel Foley to school.

Meet Bass Reeves.

Hailed as one of the most accomplished lawmen of his generation, Reeves came from humble beginnings in the mid-1800s. While not much is known about his early life, in her book Oklahoma Originals: Early Heroes, Heroines, Villains & Vixens author Jonita Mullins records that he escaped from slavery in Texas and settled for a time among the Creek Nation of Oklahoma before emancipation….

Read the full story at our sister site dedicated to True Crime, Crime Capsule.