History | Oct 15 2019

Stanley Ketchel: A handsome young man, a jealous lover, money, murder and a rifle

Death of the "Assassin" Stanley Ketchel, writes Nick Bond
Stanley Ketchel

A WOMAN murdered! Her husband shot! For five days a Mexican murderer was at large. He was dangerous and would not hesitate to shoot. There was a thousand dollars reward for his capture – dead or alive. That sounds  like something out of the Wild and Wooly West. It was. And out there at Butte, Montana, was a young man, Stanley Ketchel, who had gone West in search of adventure and excitement, to find it, and after one of the most colourful careers in ring history, to add his name to the list of Fistiana’s immortals.

Stanley and Jack Stagel, the owner of the Cross Bar Ranch where Ketchel was working at the time, had just come out of the stables after attending to the horses when a rifle slug whizzed through the air and into Stagel’s shoulder.

Again the murderer had left his visiting card. Ketchel whipped out his gun and fired. Immediately there came a return fire from the Mexican. Stanley wasn’t hit but pretended he was and dropped flat on his back.