The Old West was home to a number of wild characters. There were outlaws, lawmen, madams of the night, and people who were just getting by. Of those, some rose to become legends because of their exploits on either side of the law. John B. Hayes, known as The Texas Kid was an outlaw who while Jess Crumbly was an everyman who became an outlaw out of his hatred of segregation.
The Texas Kid
Born in Waco, TX, John B. Hayes’ life is a mystery. Perhaps no one really asked about his life or everyone who knew him didn’t bother to write about him. He’s an enigma who caused a stir when it came to segregation. Some bars in Texas during the late 19th century had “Whites Only” signs as expected. The Texas Kid hated these kinds of bars and intentionally frequented them.
If the proprietor refused to serve him, the Texas Kid would leave before bursting through the doors on his horse! He would then shoot out the lights before riding out of town. Now, one would figure that word would’ve gotten around to other bars in nearby towns and settlements. Here you have a Black man riding his horse into a business, destroying property and discharging a firearm. Also, this happened enough that he developed a reputation.
It’s likely there were bounties out for the Texas Kid. After all, he destroyed property and fired a gun indoors. Of course, this could’ve been a pretty regular occurrence at the time–especially if your establishment is frequented by rough housers. If you add in that the Texas Kid was Black in segregated Texas and not a local in many cases then you have an outlaw.