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Cherokee Bill

Black Cowboy-Indian Outlaw

Cherokee Bill was every bit as colorful and outrageous as any criminal of the western frontier, perhaps even more so. There were a few things about him that made him truly unique for a famous desperado of the purple sage. First and foremost, he was an African American living in the Indian Territory. He was also Native American, Bill was a citizen of the Cherokee Nation, as a freedman, from his mother's lineage.

Compare Cherokee Bill to Billy the Kid, (Billy Antrim), of New Mexico Territory fame. Although both outlaws received national media attention for their crimes while they were living, Billy the Kid was remembered and immortalized in books and films in the twentieth century; this did not occur for Cherokee Bill. Art Burton's newest book will help change that.

"[Burton's] years of research resulted in a remarkable story of an Old West giant, one who arguably was the best in his business."

True West Magazine


“(Black, Red, and Deadly: Black and Indian Gunfighters of the Indian Territories, 1870-1907) is a meaningful addition to my library, especially with the recent dedication of the Buffalo Soldier Monument. Your book illuminates another exciting chapter in the story of the outstanding contributions made by African Americans to our Nation’s history.” 

Colin L. Powell
65th United States Secretary of State, American statesman and a retired four-star general in the United States Army.


“For my fellow writer, Art T. Burton, who has given us a real marshal of Parker’s Court, Bass Reeves, with admiration.”

 Charles Portis
Author of True Grit, the novel, which was made into a movie starring John Wayne, also an upcoming movie adaption by the Coen Brothers, he remarked about Black Gun, Silver Star.


“Thank you for telling those stories to us. They are an important part of United States history.”

Sterling B. Epps
Special Assistant to the Director-Congressional Affairs, U.S. Department of Justice


“Burton’s true tales about Black men of iron resolve such as U.S. Deputy Marshal Bass Reeves are a breakthrough for minority groups who often feel left out of the dominant American myth of the cowboy. Burton might have focused on Reeves alone, but his wider view includes many more Indian and Black gunfighters, lawmen, outlaws….”

Michael Martin Murphy
Cowboy Singer & Songwriter, Albuquerque Journal


“Art T. Burton’s homage to the Black lawmen and outlaws who populated the old West…”

Ebony Magazine

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