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Title The Bandit Invincible: The Story of the Outlaw Butch Cassidy
Subject Criminals; History
Spatial Coverage Wayne County (Utah); Wyoming
Personal Names Cassidy, Butch (1866-?); Sundance Kid; Logan, Harvey
Description Historical account of Butch Cassidy's exploits
Creator Phillips, William T.
Publisher Rocky Mountain House Press
Contributors Dullenty, Jim; Baker, Pearl
Date Digital 2004-07-09
Date 1986
Type Text
Format application/pdf
Format Creation Scanned at 400ppi on an Epson Expression 1630XL flatbed scanner. Files saved as uncompressed TIFF and re-sized to JPEG using PhotoShop CS.
Source Original booklet: The Bandit Invincible: The Story of the Outlaw Butch Cassidy
Language eng
Rights Management Digital image copyright 2004, Green River Public Library. All rights reserved.
Holding Institution Green River Public Library, 85 South Long St., Green River, UT 84525
Source Physical Dimensions 66 p. : ill., ports. ; 30 cm.
Scanning Technician Nima Rakhsha
Metadata Cataloger Denice Hoffman
ARK ark:/87278/s6t43szj
Setname gr_pbb
Date Created 2005-03-18
Date Modified 2005-03-18
ID 317865
Reference URL

Page Metadata

Description To understand how the manuscript came about, one must know something of Phillips. As was said, the first known record of him is that May 1908 marriage certificate. On it, he said he was a mechanical engineer in Des Moines, Iowa. He told friends years later in Spokane (the same friends to whom he claimed he was Butch Cassidy) that he had worked on state capitols in Iowa and Minnesota. No records show Phillips worked on these buildings, but it seems more plausible that he did so than that he was outlaw Butch Cassidy. Had he worked on them, of course, he was not the outlaw but his listeners in Spokane did not understand that. After they were married, Bill and Gertrude may have spent time in the Colo- rado Rockies prospecting for gold. Phillips spent the rest of his life inter- mittently looking for gold and a way to get rich quick. They settled in Globe, Arizona, where he helped build houses. That is confirmed by photos from the Phillips family album showing the two in Globe. By the winter of 1910, they were in Spokane. Phillips and his wife were penniless when they arrived by train in Spokane but he soon got a job as a draftsman and that led to his establishment of a machine shop. How he acquired the skills for these occupations is unknown. His business was a success and by 1920, Phillips was a fairly prominent businessman. He loved fast cars, fast women and booze. His was a complex character: Close business associates never heard his claim to friends that he was Cassidy and to close friends he was evasive about his past. His wife grew weary of his fast friends and withdrew from him. She either did not believe his claim that he was Cassidy, was embarrassed that the truth about his past emerged or she knew it wasn't true and was embarrassed that he had promoted the idea. Bill Phillips' business was ruined both by his own profligacy and the Great Depression. By 1931 he was broke. During the late 1920s and early 1930s, he had begun the curious habit of making annual trips to areas of Wyoming and Utah where the Wild Bunch had camped in the last years of the 19th Century. He may have been prospecting for gold -- or for the gold that had seen the hands of men. In 1929 and again in 1933, he spent considerable time in the Wind River Mountains of Wyo- ming and was accepted by many in Lander and Riverton as the returned outlaw. Stories that Butch Cassidy returned stemmed from these visits. Some researchers claimed that Butch came back but was not Phillips. In every case where I was able to obtain enough information from the researcher to pin down the story, it turned out that the returnee was Bill Phillips. No other Cassidy returned and no claims that anyone other than Phillips was Cassidy has ever been confirmed. If outlaw Butch Cassidy returned to his old haunts he did so in the person of William T. Phillips. Claims by other researchers and such as Lula Parker Betenson, Joyce Warner and others who say they saw Butch return or had letters from him or know where he died have never been confirmed! It is not certain when Phillips began writing his Cassidy story but it was probably started in the late 1920s as his business declined and his need for money increased. But what he wrote was so confused and in some cases so implausible that no editor wanted it. It is believed he submitted his manuscript to Sunset magazine and was rejected. Which other publications saw it is unknown, but no one wanted it. It was one more failure. As the failures piled up, Phillips' health deteriorated. He developed cancer of the rectum and died on July 20, 1937. Prior to his death, friends in Spokane obtained a copy of his manuscript and copied it. Those friends kept it through the years simply as a keepsake. In 1973, I obtained their copy. I got involved because at the time I was a reporter for the Spokane Daily Chronicle.
Format application/pdf
Source Original booklet: Pearl Baker: Interviewed by John McFarlane
Setname gr_pbb
Date Created 2005-03-18
Date Modified 2005-03-18
ID 317802
Reference URL