• Rifle Regiment arriving at Belle Point, 1817. Artwork by Michael Haynes

    Fort Smith

    National Historic Site AR,OK

June 30, 1891 Execution

noose
Boudinot Crumpton was executed on the Fort Smith gallows on June 30, 1891. A jury found him guilty of having shot and killed his traveling companion. Crumpton asserted his innocence up until his execution. His final statement on the gallows is a poignant example of the role alcohol played on the frontier. He warned those at the gallows, “To all present, and especially young men; when you are about to drink a glass of whiskey, look closely in the bottom and see if you cannot observe therein a hangman’s noose. There is where I first saw the one which now breaks my neck.”

Did You Know?

Portrait of Anna Dawes

A woman was responsible for the building of a modern federal jail at Fort Smith, AR, in 1888. Anna Dawes, daughter of Sen. Dawes of MA, visited the "Hell on the Border" jail in 1885 and wrote an article describing its conditions. When read in Congress, money was quickly approved for a new jail.