The Overland Trail--Personalities

Tom Horn, He Was My Hero

by Doug Kafka

Copyright © 1996 All Rights Reserved

Tom Horn, he was my hero,
I know he shot some men
But they gone and hung Tom Horn
So he won't shoot nobody again.

Down in Arizona, Tom Horn helped Mickey Free
They helped capture Old Geronimo
Made the country safer
For people like you and me.

General Miles said Tom was a good man
One to have on your side
Make an enemy of Tom Horn
And he'd put a bullet in your hide.

Tom Horn was a roper too,
One of the very best
At Cheyenne Frontier Days
Tom Horn out roped all the rest.

Tom Horn was a range detective
He worked for the big wheels
He knew all of their business
And of all their dirty deals.

Tom Horn cleaned the rustler's out of Brown's Hole
He went and shot Isom Dart
That's what he gave for rustlin'
Lead, right through the heart.

Tom Horn, he stopped the rustlin'
And it didn't matter who
Kill another man's beef
Tom Horn would do away with you.

Tom Horn, he rode the ranges
Out of sight and hard to see
Go ahead, butcher another's beef
You'll lay dead, beneath a tree.

Our Sybille country was
Rough and hard to ride
I was a ranch-raised kid,
Wild, and full of pride.

We lived near our neighbors
My folks, the family and I
They raised sheep, we had cattle,
Some one had to die.

I fought the neighbor's son
He got the best of me
My black eyes and whippin'
Was for all the world to see.

It's hard to take a whippin'
I was bitter clear through
Tom Horn, he was my hero
I would do as he would do.

I took the thirty-thirty
I met him at the gate
Now let the Lord decide
Heaven or Hell, to be his fate.

I was scared and afraid then
Lord, what had I done?
I dealt out death that day
From the barrel of a gun.

They looked for the killer
Just everywhere, you see
So far, I've been lucky
They didn't know it was me.

I was scarred and alone
No place to go and ride
US Marshal Joe Lafores
Would want to stretch my hide.

The boy was buried in old Cheyenne
And there he'll always lay
But it wasn't over yet
Someone had to pay.

The big outfits disliked our neighbors
Everyone knew they did
Who would take a gun and kill?
He was just a kid.

The rustlers were afraid of Tom Horn
You can understand that too
The big outfits were afraid
Of all that Tom Horn knew.

Tom Horn knew he hadn't done it
But he got drunk one day
The marshal took the story down;
All Tom Horn had to say.

So they arrested Tom Horn
And took him to the jail
Tom was behind the bars
The judge refused him bail.

The jury was selected
Of citizens of our state,
They all sat and listened
They decided Tom Horn's fate.

Tome Horn had killed other men
The jury knew and agreed
Had Tom Horn killed the boy?
Who had done this terrible deed?

They decided it didn't matter
They put him to the final test
They hung Tom Horn with a rope
And laid him down to rest.

I'm safe and free now
No one must ever know
It was me who dealt out death
In the hills so long ago.

Tom Horn, he was my hero
I know he shot some men
But they gone and hung Tom Horn
So he won't shoot nobody again.

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Copyright © 1996 All Rights Reserved