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LSU Doctoral Dissertations

Christian County

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"The Bald Knobbers Of Southwest Missouri, 1885-1889: A Study Of Vigilante Justice In The Ozarks.", Matthew James Hernando Jan 2011

"The Bald Knobbers Of Southwest Missouri, 1885-1889: A Study Of Vigilante Justice In The Ozarks.", Matthew James Hernando

LSU Doctoral Dissertations

The Bald Knobbers of Southwest Missouri were a vigilante organization that originated in Taney County, Missouri, in 1885, before spreading to adjacent Christian and Douglas counties in ensuing years. They began as a group dedicated to protecting life and property, aiding law enforcement officials in the apprehension of criminals, opposing corruption in local government, and punishing those who violated the social and religious mores of their community. In some places, the vigilantes gained much political influence, occupied key offices, and became effectively the ruling faction in local politics. They made many enemies, however, with whom they had several violent, sometimes …