Billy the Kid
Born: November 23, 1859, New York City, New York
Died: July 14, 1881 (aged 21), Fort Sumner, New Mexico
McCarty, better known as Billy the Kid, but also known by the
aliases Henry Antrim and William H. Bonney, was a
19th-century American frontier outlaw and gunman who participated in the
so-called Lincoln County War. According to legend, he killed 21 men, one
for each year of his life, but he most likely participated in the
killing of fewer than half that number.
What do you know about Billy the Kid? Have a shoot out with the
1. Little is known about McCarty's origins, but most reputable
scholars of western history agree that he "was born on the eve of
the Civil War in the bowels of an Irish neighborhood in New York
City." While his biological father remains an obscure figure, some
researchers have theorized that his name was Patrick McCarty, Michael
McCarty, William McCarty, or Edward McCarty. There is clear evidence
that his mother's name was Catherine McCarty, although "there have
been continuing debates about whether McCarty was her maiden or married
2. By 1868, Catherine McCarty had relocated with her two young sons,
Henry and Joseph, to Indianapolis, Indiana. There, she met William
Antrim, who was 12 years her junior. In 1873, after several years of
moving around the country, the two were married at the First
Presbyterian Church in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Where did they end up
3. Catherine McCarty died and she was buried in the Memory Lane
Cemetery in Silver City. What year did she die?
- September 16, 1870
- September 16, 1874
- September 16, 1878
4. In April, 1875, McCarty was arrested by Grant County Sheriff
Harvey Whitehill, after McCarty stole some cheese. On September 24,
1875, McCarty was again arrested when he was found in possession of
clothing and firearms that a fellow boarder had stolen from a Chinese
laundry owner. Two days after McCarty was placed in jail, the teenager
escaped by worming his way up the jailhouse chimney. From that point on,
McCarty was more or less a fugitive.
5. On August 17, 1877, the civilian blacksmith at Fort Grant, Arizona
Territory reportedly attacked McCarty after a verbal exchange and threw
him to the ground. Reliable accounts suggest McCarty retaliated by
drawing his gun and shooting him. He died the next day. Who was the
first notch on Billy's gun?
- Rex Alfred
- Frank "Windy" Cahill
- Morgan Hope
6. In the Autumn of 1877, McCarty (now widely known as Bonney) moved
to Lincoln County, New Mexico. In late 1877, who hired him to work on
- John Tunstall
- Doc Scurlock
- Charlie Bowdre
7. McCarty and the other Regulators spent the next several months in
hiding and were trapped, along with a local lawyer, in his home in
Lincoln on July 15, 1878 by members of "The House" (as the
Murphy-Dolan faction was known) and some of Brady's men. On July 19, a
column of U.S. cavalry soldiers entered the fray. Ostensibly neutral,
the column's actions worked to the clear advantage of the Dolan faction.
After a five day siege, the house was set on fire. The lawyer was shot
down while fleeing the blaze, and his death essentially marked the end
of the Lincoln County Cattle War. Who was the local lawyer?
- Alexander McSween
- Lew Wallace
- Jim French
8. On April 9, 1881, after two days of testimony, McCarty was found
guilty of the murder of Sheriff William J. Brady, the only conviction
ever secured against any of the combatants in the Lincoln County Cattle
War. On April 13, he was sentenced by Judge Warren Bristol to hang. When
was his execution scheduled for?
- May 13, 1881
- May 13, 1883
- May 13, 1885
9. Billy escaped from jail and traveled from Lincoln to Fort Sumner.
Sheriff Pat Garrett and two deputies set out on July 14, 1881, to
question one of the town's residents, a friend of McCarty's named. Close
to midnight, as Garrett and Billy's friend sat talking in his darkened
bedroom, McCarty unexpectedly entered the room. Pat Garrett shot Billy
the Kid. Who was the Kid's friend?
- Pedro Maxwell
- Frank Coe
- Charlie Bowdre
10. Where is Billy the Kid buried?
- Old Fort Sumner Cemetery, Fort Sumner, New Mexico
- Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Albuquerque, New Mexico
- Fort Bayard National Cemetery, Fort Bayard, New Mexico