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Emmett Dalton Timeline

PLEASE NOTE: I have compiled this list from various sources, and cannot quarantee the accuracy of all the statements.

May 13, 1871:
Emmett Dalton is born near Belton, Missouri. He is the eleventh child and the ninth son of Lewis and Adeline Dalton (click here for all the Dalton family members ).

The Daltons live in Bates Co. (Westpoint township), Missouri. Bill (15) helps with the farm; Robert (11) and Emmett (9) attend school. Ben (28), Littleton (22), Frank (20) and Grat (19) working for a Mr. Hoag in Colusa Co., California.

1880 - 1883:
The Daltons live just south of Coffeyville (see their house). A man named J. K. Beatty later remembered being a neighbor to the Daltons on a farm near Coffeyville and often meeting the boys, whom he described as wild, but good company, and having many friends.

The Daltons move to the Indian Territory to live near Vinita. It is said that one of the banks foreclosed on the house in Coffeyville, forcing the family out. This has been cited as a possible reason for the raid on the banks in 1892.

Fort Smith Court House

Frank is commissioned Deputy U. S. Marshal at Fort Smith, Arkansas. Later Bob will work as a guard and posse for him. (But in an affidavit from Ft Smith Frank Dalton states: “I am a Deputy U. S. Marshal, having received my first commission about the 7th of March 1886, and that commission having expired and been renewed on September 7, 1886.” At that time Bob was his guard. See also Frank's oath of office)

June 15, 1885:
Bill marries Jane Bliven in Merced Co., California.

Emmett leaves home to work as a cowboy at a near-by ranch owned by Mr. Courtney (not at Bar-X-Bar ranch, as he later claimed).

Oct. 15, 1887:
Emmett attends his sister Eva’s wedding at Meade, Kansas, as she marries Mr. J. N. Whipple.

Nov. 27, 1887:
Frank is killed by a whiskey runner William Towerly. His body is taken to his home at Chelsea,
I. T., and he is buried in Coffeyville, Kansas. It was said he was living with his mother and younger siblings. After Frank's death, Lewis Dalton takes his family back across the border to live near Coffeyville again.

Grat comes from California and becomes a deputy for the Western District of Arkansas, with Bob as his guard and posseman.

Aug. 1888:
Charley Montgomery is killed by Deputy Marshal Grat Dalton’s posse (consisting of Al Landis, Bob Dalton and Bill Griggs). Montgomery ran toward Bob shooting, and Bob shot him in self-defense (read here how Bob Dalton shot Charley Montgomery).

Jan. 10, 1889:
Bob and Grat commissioned deputy marshals for the District of Kansas. By now Emmett is working as a guard for Bob. One morning he had settled up with Mr. Courtney and left to join his brothers, then camped at Bird Creek, I. T.

January 1889:
Grat and Bob borrow $72.10 from a loan agency in Coffeyville.

March 15, 1889:
About ten miles northwest of Tulsa Billy Bruner shoots Grat in the arm and kills Deputy Marshal W. A. Moody, who had killed Frank’s killer Towerly.

April 1889 to Sept. 1889:
According to found records, Bob is employed as a detective by the Osage Indian Agency.

June 30, 1889:
Emmett is paid $18.00 for guarding prisoners in Pawhuska from May 7 to May 16, 1889.

Aug. 30, 1889:
Grat is commissioned to work for the Muskogee court.

Dec. 25, 1889:
Bob is riding around a whiskey peddlers’ wagon and an Indian camp near Bird Creek, Osage Nation. He is possibly also drinking whiskey. Emmett is staying on the road some distance away.

March 1890:
A man named Delondale pistol-whipped by Grat almost to insensibility (this incident may have cost Grat his commission).

Mar. 21, 1890:
Bob and Emmett are arrested in Pawhuska by Deputy Lafe Shadley for “introducing intoxicating liquor into the Osage Nation on Dec. 25, 1889.”

Mar. 26, 1890:
At a hearing the case against Emmett is dropped. Bob is released on $1.000 bail to appear at the district court at Wichita the following September. This Bob failed to do.

Emmett gets paid on April 9, 1890

June 20, 1890:
On, or about, this date Bob and Emmett are paid off for their last trip which was with Deputy Floyd Wilson. Their career as lawmen was over.

July 16, 1890:
Lewis Dalton dies of sudden attack of cholera just as the family were moving to Kingfisher, O. T. He is buried in Robbins Cemetery, west of Coffeyville.

July 20, 1890:
On, or about, this date Bob and Grat visit a family named Mitchell in Cherokee Nation with a couple horses they say are from their father’s estate. They had just come from burying him.

July 31, 1890:
Between midnight and dawn Bob and Emmett are at Mitchells’ with a herd of horses they say they are taking to Kansas.

Aug. 4, 1890:
Grat, Bob and Emmett at some kind of a party or a picnic at Goose Neck Creek, Cherokee Nation. Bob and Emmett drinking a good deal during the evening. Grat had left before they arrived.

Prob. Sept. 8, 1890:
Near Baxter Springs, Kansas, Bob, Emmett and one other man (not Grat) leave twenty horses behind and ride off when they see horse dealer Mr. Scott and with him two men, Mr. Rogers and Mr. Musgrove, from Cherokee Nation, who have come looking for their stolen horses.

Sept. 8, 1890:
A telegram is sent to Fort Smith about Bob, Grat and Emmett stealing horses by the drove.

Sept. 9, 1890:
Grat is arrested and placed in the Fort Smith jail (see document). He is released a month or so later. Bob and Emmett have disappeared from the area.

About October 1890:
Bob and Emmett go to California to stay with brother Bill, who has a ranch near Estrella.

January 1891:
Grat arrives in California and stays with brother Littleton near Fresno.

Feb. 6, 1891:
Attempted train robbery at Alila, Cal. Bob, Emmett, Grat and Bill soon become suspects. While Bob and Emmett escape back to the Indian Territory, Grat and Bill are arrested as accessories (see the Southern Pacific wanted poster for Emmett and Bob).

May 8, 1891:
The Wharton train robbery.

July 8, 1891:
Grat is found guilty, although many witnesses placed him at the Grand Central Hotel, Fresno, on the night of the robbery. Bob and Emmett are in New Orleans on their way to South America. After reading about the verdict, they abandon their plans and return to home grounds.

Sept. 15, 1891:
The Leliaetta train robbery.

Dead members of the Dalton gang

Sept. 20, 1891:
Grat breaks out of jail.

Oct. 5, 1891:
At his trial, Bill is found not guilty.

June 2, 1892:
The Red Rock train robbery.

July 14, 1892:
The Adair train robbery.

Oct. 5, 1892:
The Coffeyville bank raid. The end of the Dalton gang. Only Emmett survives near fatally wounded.

Oct. 11, 1892:
Emmett taken to the county jail at Independence, Kansas, accompanied by Bill.

Dec. 16, 1892:
Not yet being able to walk, Emmett is carried in a chair to court for a short hearing of his case.

Jan. 16, 1893:
Emmett attends a hearing and is bound over and held, without bail, for trial set for March 7, 1893.

March 7, 1893:
Emmett’s trial begins and he pleads “not guilty” to the charge of murder. Later that day he is put under pressure to change his plea to “guilty of second degree murder of Cubine”. He resists, having not killed anyone, but eventually gives in.

Emmett prisoner #6471

March 8, 1893:
Emmett pleads “guilty” and is given a life sentence by Judge McCue. Emmett is shocked and tearful, protesting the unfairness of the sentence. He is immediately sent on his way to the state prison at Lansing, Kansas. At every stop people enter the train to have a look at the famous bandit. At Lansing Sheriff Callahan comments on Emmett’s good behavior while under his care at Independence.

Prison years 1893 - 1907
Emmett is assigned to work in the tailor shop. He becomes one of the best cutters and is made a supervisor. After five years he begins his campaign for freedom with support from his mother. Various governors of Kansas hear his case, but opposition is stiff.

In February 1907 he is made a prison trusty and is allowed to go outside the prison walls. Support for his pardon has been growing during the intervening years. The arm injured at the Coffeyville fight is increasingly giving him trouble and by May 1907 he is in the prison hospital suffering greatly from it.

July 6, 1907:
Governor Hoch grants Emmett four months’ parole in order for him to get treatment for his arm. Emmett travels to Topeka.

July 10, 1907:
Emmett has an operation lasting one hour and ten minutes to remove diseased bone from his arm. He is more worried about the anesthetic than the operation itself.

July - October 1907:
After recuperating at the hospital, Emmett gets a job as a night clerk at the Copeland Hotel, where he is staying. He does his work well, but is forced to give it up due to his still bothersome arm.

By now the main opponents for Emmett’s pardon are a handful of bankers. The newspapers have taken on his case and everyone seems sure Governor Hoch would pardon him after his parole.

Nov. 2, 1907:
Emmett is pardoned by Governor Hoch.

Dec. 5, 1907:
Emmett visits cousin Marcus J. “Scout” Younger in Tulsa and is amazed at the change of the old cow-town to a modern city.

Beginning of 1908:
Emmett moves to Tulsa where he works for Scout Younger at his grocery and meat market. He also sets up a tailor shop with Mr. J. G. Schuler.

April 13 - May 2, 1908:
Emmett goes on over a thousand mile “booster” trip East with the Tulsa Commercial Club. In Washington he gets to meet President Theodor Roosevelt. In spite of trying to avoid attention, newspaper reporters chase him at every opportunity.

June 13, 1908:
Emmett visits Coffeyville and attracts a large crowd in no time. He is kindly received. He pays an emotional visit to his brothers’ grave, talks to John J. Kloehr and some of the raid victims’ families.

Sept. 2, 1908:
Emmett marries Julia Johnson Lewis in Bartlesville and settles down there.

Nov. - Dec. 1908:
John B. Tackett makes a film about Coffeyville at the request of the Coffeyville Commercial Club, which is to be shown at the Seattle Exposition the following year. The Dalton raid is included in the film and Tackett gets Emmett to advise on these scenes. In January 1909 former Governor Hoch expresses his displeasure with Emmett’s involvement. Emmett visits him in Topeka.

March 1909:
Emmett is asked by neighbors in Ward 4, Bartlesville, to stand as a candidate for city councillor. He is nominated, but is beaten to the post by Mr. Schwartz.

Sept. 1909:
With Tackett, and accompanied by Julia, Emmett embarks on a tour of Oklahoma showing a moving picture film of the Dalton raid at Coffeyville. People flock to see it and hear Emmett lecture against crime. But some find cause to complain about the criminal content of the movie.

January 1910:
Governor Stubbs of Kansas is threatening to revoke Emmett’s pardon and to send him back to prison for showing his movies, now touring Kansas and other states as well. Emmett says the governor doesn’t know what he's talking about, and carries on with his show.

Emmett puts together an updated version of the Dalton movie, directed by Jack Kenyon. He has now made a career of showing his films and lecturing about the pitfalls of crime. During his travels he visits various prisons, talks about prison reform and campaigns against the death penalty.

Beyond The Law poster

1918 and on:
Emmett has his book Beyond the Law published. He and Julia move to Hollywood, where Emmett makes yet another movie about the Dalton gang, with the same title as his book. This is the best known of his films. He also acted in this film, and in some others based on his life. These never made much impact, but toured the theaters as secondary features for some time. Emmett toured lecturing with Beyond the Law till early 1925.

He became a general manager in two film companies; Southern Feature Film Corporation and Standard Pictures of California Inc.

Emmett gets involved in the construction business, building homes in Hollywood, and this becomes his most successful career move.

Jan. 24, 1925:
Adeline Dalton dies of influenza at Kingfisher, Ok. Emmett’s name is not mentioned among the members of the family attending her funeral.

Emmett is diagnosed with hypertension.

Emmett signs his book

January 1931:
Emmett’s book When the Daltons Rode, written in collaboration with Jack Jungmeyer, is published.

April - May 1931:
Emmett and Julia do a long automobile tour to Oklahoma and Kansas to visit old places and friends. In Coffeyville Emmett arranges a marker for the grave of Bob, Grat and Bill Power.

Later in 1931 Emmett is diagnosed with diabetes mellitus. In 1932 he retires from the real estate business and his health starts to deteriorate further. He spends his time writing movie scenarios and stories for western magazines.

Aug. 27, 1936:
Emmett is babtized at the Angelus Temple, Los Angeles.

July 4, 1937:
Emmett suffers a stroke.

July 13, 1937:
Emmett dies at home. His body is cremated and shipped to Kingfisher, Ok., for burial.

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