|Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker were both natives of Dallas. Though
Clyde, the son of sharecroppers, was born in Telico (Ellis County) and
Bonnie's family moved to Dallas from Rowena (Runnels County) after
the death of her father, they both considered the Eagle Ford area -
West Dallas - home.
After running from the law for a little over two years, while
criss-crossing the Mid-West, they died together in a violent ambush
near Lebanon, Louisiana (close to Arcadia, in Bienville Parish).
Traces of their past can still be seen in the Dallas area and
thereabouts. If you are interested in learning more about their story, go
to Bonnie and Clyde's Hideout or take a tour through the Dallas
County Historical Society. Also, check out my book that provides tours
of Bonnie & Clyde!
|Know Your History!
West Dallas, which Bonnie and
Clyde called home, was once
known as Eagle Ford. Locals called
the southern portion "Cement
City" after the cement companies
that were founded around the
limestone hills. West Dallas wasn't
incorporated into Dallas until 1952.
West Dallas' history is set to
change once again with the
opening of the Margaret Hunt Hill
|Bonnie's elementary school, now defunct, sits on Chalk Hill Road.
|After the Barrows moved to Dallas, they lived under the Houston Street
Viaduct before finding a place to live in West Dallas. Henry Barrow, Clyde's
father, built a shack on land owned by one of his daughters. Henry had
been collecting scrap metal for a living when his mule and cart were struck
by a car - and with the modest settlement he received from the accident, he
built the Star Service Station, attaching the shack to a small store. The
building seen above is a the actual gas station, now bricked over and
remodeled some (Singleton Blvd).
|The Kemp calaboose in Kaufman County, where Bonnie spent a long,
sleepless night after an attempted robbery of a hardware store.
Calabooses are small jails built for small towns, meant to hold a crook until
he (or she) can be transferred to the county slammer. From Spanish,
|Bonnie is buried at the Crown Hill Cemetery off of Webb Chapel Road.
Her mother and her niece and nephew are also buried in the same plot.
|Clyde is buried next to his brother Buck in Western Heights Cemetery, Fort
|Clyde ran off the road while
driving in the Texas
panhandle, near the town of
Wellington. His car landed in
the dry river bed of the Salt
Fork of the Red River.
Bonnie was severely burnt in
the crash. The Pritchards, a
family who lived closest to
the accident scene, took
Bonnie, Clyde, and their
running mate, W.D. Jones,
inside their house to help
the injured Bonnie. They
ended up being in the
middle of a shootout
between the gangsters and
local police. Above left are
old pillars of what may have
been the bridge that Clyde
thought he was going to
cross back then (the bridge
had been washed out). Left
are the remains of the old
Pritchard farm house.
|The old McKinney jail housed Raymond Hamilton, one-time member of
the Barrow Gang, before he once again tried to escape. In recent years,
the jail was home to an excellent restaurant (now closed). The bars that
Hamilton tried to saw through can still be viewed, as well as his jail cell
and - supposedly - the gallows plank.
|After the ambush, Bonnie and Clyde, shot to pieces and all gory, were
towed inside their stolen car to the coroner's office in Arcadia. The way to
Arcadia is through the little town of Gibsland. Right in front of the town
school, the tow truck with its gruesome cargo broke down. Above is that
old Gibsland school, where the kids spilled out of the doors to get a first
hand look inside the "death car" (maybe a lesson that crime doesn't pay?)
|The Texas Prison Museum in Huntsville houses
some really cool stuff, like this pistol that was in
Bonnie's lap the day she died. Ted Hinton, a Dallas
County Deputy sheriff and member of the ambush
posse, certified the gun as authentic.
|The Texas Ranger Museum in Waco has a display case dedicated to the ambush. Above are the
weapons that killed the duo; left is a pocket watch found on Barrow's body.
|Read about Bonnie and Clyde in my article!
I also give tours of Bonnie and Clyde hideouts.
Check out my tour list if you're interested!
My book, Traveling History with Bonnie and Clyde, details five tours that retrace
the steps of the crime pair - have fun, tour the country, and learn history all in one
handy source! You know you want it.
|Bonnie & Clyde Haunts
|Make sure to visit the Bonnie and Clyde Ambush
Museum in Gibsland, Louisiana. Owned by
Kenneth Holmes and run by Boots Hinton (Ted
Hinton's son), the museum offers up a lot of
authentic history and is located in the same
building where Bonnie allegedly ate her last meal.
|Bonnie and Clyde stayed at tourist camps whenever they could, although
most often they slept in the car while on the lam. The Texas Tourist Camp
in Decatur, faced with petrified wood, is said to have been a hideout.
|On May 23, 1934, Bonnie and Clyde were shot down by the Texas
Rangers, with help from Bienville Parish law enforcement and Dallas County
deputies. Henry Methvin, their running partner at the time, is said to have
negotiated a plea bargain if he could deliver the pair to justice. The order
was to shoot to kill on sight, as everyone knew Barrow would never be
taken alive (he already had had a hand in killing 11 people). Bonnie and
Clyde had been hiding out at the old Cole farmhouse in Bienville Parish,
and were completely surprised by the ambush. Bienville Parish erected this
marker at the sight. The marker has to be replaced quite often, however, as
souvenir hunters chip away at the cement and/or memorialize themselves.
Hey, they're just following tradition; locals apparently tried to saw off Clyde's
trigger finger immediately following the ambush.