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The Deadliest gang in America.....The Nightriders.

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posted on Mar, 3 2015 @ 05:20 PM
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(I put this in Folk Tales and Legends forum because there is a bit of myth surrounding these guys, they did unfortunately exist.)

I love history of all kinds. Military history, World history, Ancient history, etc is all fascinating to me. I just finished reading a few books on Jesse and Frank James since I had never really delved into the outlaw genre of American history that much before.

So imagine my surprise when I learned that there was a gang of American outlaws that operated at about the same time that made Frank and Jesse look Saintly by comparison. And that they operated literally in my own back yard no less! These men were responsible for hundreds (more likely thousands but nobody really has any idea how many victims there were) of travelers being murdered along the old Harrisonburg/Natchez trace. This was in the post civil war South when lawlessness was rampant. While Frank and Jesse welcomed the attention that they were showered with by the papers and news outlets of the day, the Nightriders killed (or threatened to kill) any reporter with the guile to run any story about them. While Frank and Jesse brazenly robbed banks and trains in broad daylight the Nightriders operated in secrecy, under the cover of night. Attention to them was the last thing they wanted.

John West fought for the Confederacy and returned home after the war to settle in an area about five miles South of present day Atlanta LA. in Winn parish. Jackson Laws Kimbrell was the second half of the clans’ leadership. The formation of the West-Kimbrell Clan took place sometime after the Civil War when West and Kimbrell became friends. Believe it or not but they were respected citizens in the community and church. They formed a home guard of sorts to help with the lawlessness in the area. The home guard consisted of all sorts of community leaders including ministers and church members. Most members were not aware of the inner circle of the home guard however. It was the inner circle that committed the most heinous crimes.

They killed so many people that they had to dig a well every mile along a forty mile stretch of the Harrisonburg road. Men, Women, children, infants. Entire families traveling west were murdered, their possessions stolen and their bodies disposed of in the wells. If you were asked to join the Nightriders, you either joined or were killed to prevent exposing the gang. This group of outlaws consisted of many members; yet, almost all the outlaw deeds were done under the cover of darkness and never was a witness allowed to live to tell of the clan's deeds. The clan persuaded various people of the area to join in its evil doings and once a person was asked to join the clan, he either joined or was murdered to prevent exposing the groups of outlaws. Many travelers on the old Harrisonburg Road were robbed and killed. Therefore, much fear was generated in the minds of travelers, but the travelers were not the only ones frightened - all citizens of Central Louisiana feared for their lives when the "Nightriders" were mentioned.

Not five miles from where I live there is a stretch of road on Hwy 65 going to Winnfield that has a little bridge and a small sign that says "Carter's Crossing" on it. I've passed it several time driving by and wondered why it was Carters crossing and not something else. One day I googled it and found a story that tied directly into the Nightriders legend.



Around the year 1870, a member of the clan whose name has faded into the dark corridors of forgotten history rode up to Jim Carter's house which was located in what is now Ward 4 about a mile or so north of Dugdemona Creek. Jim Carter was a hard-working farmer whose brother, Calvin Carter, has the honor of having the town of Calvin named after him. The young man who rode up to Jim
Carter's house was not only a clan member, but was a cousin of Carter. Carter probably didn't know his cousin was a member of the "nightriders" group, and trusting his cousin, Jim Carter responded to his request to go to Cedar Bluff and play his fiddle or guitar for a dance. It was late in the afternoon when Carter and his cousin arrived at a large double pen house on Cedar Bluff. They tied their horses to a picket fence that encircled the house. Carter thought it strange that no noise was coming from the dance. Nevertheless, he entered a large room in the house, and three stern, rough-looking men shut the door behind him. Carter knew that he had been tricked or at least been mislead in being brought to the house. It wasn't long before he was told by the men that they were clansmen and he would be required to join the West-Kimbrell Clan because his services were needed. They informed Carter that his job would be to kill the babies and kids of the travelers and then dispose of the bodies.Carter knew of the clan's policies to murder those who refused to join; therefore, he acted like he was happy to be invited to join the group. While Jim Carter listened to the instructions being given to him by the leader, he planned a way of escape.

Under the cover of darkness, Jim Carter made his escape from the house on Cedar Bluff, knowing that he would be chased and have to fight for his life because he had refused to involve himself with the notorious West-Kimbrell Clan. He rode his horse hard from Cedar Bluff fearing for his life every mile of the way home. The moon was bright as Carter rode the trail weaving off the trail every few miles to mislead the clan that he knew was following him. When Carter got to the ford on Dugdemona Creek near his home, his hot and tired
horse wanted to drink the clear, swift-running water, but Jim Carter pushed his horse on across the creek to his home. Upon arriving at his home, Carter got his gun (probably an old cap and ball pistol) and started back toward his pursuers. When he got to the ford on the creek, Carter heard a horse coming at a gallop disturbing the quietness of the night. The light from a brightly shining moon revealed a rider - it was his cousin who had tricked him into going to Cedar Bluff earlier that evening. Jim Carter knew the nature of his cousin's mission - to kill him and prevent the possible exposure of the clan.

When the cousin got to the creek, his horse looked white due to sweat and lather from the hard journey. The horse resisted its rider's urging by stopping to drink. As the horse drank with the cousin still in the saddle, Jim Carter squeezed the trigger of his gun and the bullet found its mark. His cousin fell from the horse. Three large cypress trees were drenched with the water splashed on them by the falling clan member.

No one really knows for sure what happened to Jim Carter after the killing. Some say he went straight to the sheriff and told him of his encounters with the clan; as a result the clan was partially destroyed. Others say that Him Carter left the area for fear of his life. Some say he joined the U.S. Army, and there are those who believe he went to New Orleans. Probably no one will ever know the exact truth about Jim Carter; but one thing is for sure, there is a ford on Dugdemona Creek that will forever be a reminder to the people of our that Jim Carter, the West-Kimbrell Clan, a cousin, and a killing brought into being a name for this stretch on Dugdemona and forever it will be called Carter's Crossing.



files.usgwarchives.net...

edit on 3-3-2015 by Cancerwarrior because: (no reason given)




posted on Mar, 3 2015 @ 05:20 PM
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Dan Dean was a gunfighter and member of the clan’s inner circle. For some reason, Dean and West had a serious falling out and John West tried to kill him. Laws Kimbrell interfered and saved Dean’s life. On Easter Sunday 1872 the clan kidnapped Dean’s in-laws. John West, who was also a deputy sheriff, claimed that they were under arrest. Dean’s in-laws were suspended from the rafters of the masonic lodge by their thumbs while the John West attended church with Laws and Lee Ingram, another clan member left to guard them. Dean traveled to the governor’s office and fully explained the situation to the governor and was open pardons for any person involved in eliminating the gang.



(Briley) One day in 1872 members of the Atlanta community formed a vigilante group and approached the members of the gang in the streets of Atlanta. John West was shot in the neck with a shotgun blast, completely removing his head from his body and it came to rest atop a fencepost-where it sat for years. Many of the gang members surrendered and Dean allowed Laws Kimbrell to leave the country in exchange for Laws saving his life from John West, Laws was never heard from in the area again. The remains of the slaughtered gang members, along with the headless corpse of West, were buried in an unmarked grave outside the Methodist Cemetery in Atlanta. They were considered too indecent to be buried among honorable people. It is said that more than one of the clan members were buried standing up in accordance with a long standing superstition that if you were buried upright your soul would never be at rest.


So if there is anyone that is maybe a local like me and likes history and has never heard of these guys before its a very interesting topic. I highly encourage anyone who is a history buff to read about it.

www.google.com...~bmagee%2Flouisiana_anthol ogy%2Fencyclopedia%2FStudent_papers%2FAustin_Ethan--West-Kimbrell.Clan.Paper.doc&ei=Zjj2VLaWNIOaNpCUgfgF&usg=AFQjCNFAMOG4_5hPl_P7gMuWMTmPlsCRaQ&sig2=h QR9LBOeJc2_yMfwgqFx1A

www.thepineywoods.com...

en.wikipedia.org...
edit on 3-3-2015 by Cancerwarrior because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 3 2015 @ 05:37 PM
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That sounds like a bad bunch. Thanks for the good read.



posted on Mar, 3 2015 @ 07:01 PM
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Still not as bad as the government's and nation leaders of the world.

They kill hundreds of millions going back pre-Rome, to present day (Not much has changed..).

But they are an "establiahment" they don't count in death toll they rack up


Gangs will never be as fearsome as the empires/nations and those who control them. They can harm hundreds.to a couple thousand maybe.

The establiahment controls everyone, everywhere, all the time, every nation. Yet it is accepted with head in sand. .

Poor Gangs can't compete.



posted on Mar, 3 2015 @ 07:40 PM
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a reply to: Elementalist

This is basically a history lesson thread. I don't think you quite get it.



posted on Mar, 3 2015 @ 08:21 PM
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a reply to: Cancerwarrior

Thank you for a excellent read, I do love the backroads history of America.



posted on Mar, 3 2015 @ 09:28 PM
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a reply to: Cancerwarrior

Nor do I care about pathetic outlaws who are confused and caught up in a system made by few men to control the rest.

You call gangs history?

Pathetic humans come and go, who cares who was the worst ones of times much past?

Your in someone else's system, assembly line of life for you to get on and fall off. Such a system has been ruling throughout his story.

But your right, I don't get the fuss about gangs that do not exist.

I care for the present and future, things that can be changed. And now, the same powers from his story are creating our present and future


And they are worse then gangs.

Anyways back to your history lesson

*yawn*



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 03:57 AM
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a reply to: Elementalist




Nor do I care about pathetic outlaws who are confused and caught up in a system made by few men to control the rest.


Then why are you even posting in this thread at all?

Did you notice that we are on a conspiracy website? I've heard all about how we are being controlled and manipulated for years now, you are not bringing any new information to me at all.

If you feel like talking mainstream conspiracy then I suggest you find the proper thread for it.

These guys were the most murderous, ruthless, vicious gang in US history and they killed entire families for a period of at least seven years. And nobody has ever heard of them because they worked in secret.

If you don't find any of that interesting then please go re-hash 9/11 or some other conspiracy topic in another thread. Simple really.


edit on 4-3-2015 by Cancerwarrior because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 05:09 AM
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Fascinating stuff. I was in Winnfield a few years back and wished I'd known about it.



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 06:43 AM
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Yes, a really intriguing and fascinating tale. It makes Blood Meridian all the more real, thanks for posting.



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 07:12 AM
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a reply to: Cancerwarrior

Do you know if the Masonic lodge is still standing?



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 07:13 AM
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That was a great read.

But I have a question.
How do they know what happened with Jim Carter and his cousin, if nobody knows what happened to him?


Still, love reading about little known history, so thank you.



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 05:22 PM
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Don't allow Elementalist to distract the conversation. You are right. He needs to save his rant for another thread. As to your assertion that the "Night Riders" held the title of being the most blood thirsty gang in America history, I'd have to say that is a tall statement to make when considering other gangs of the era. The Lumbee tribe of North Carolina routed the KKK and embarrassed the klan nation-wide. The KKK was/is a gang with horrendous reputation. The Mormon's flight to Utah used gang(s) to quell resistance of their passing throughout the States.

You made note of Jesse and Frank James and said they were low key compared to the Night Riders. That was an error on your part. I live in Clay county Missouri, the home of the James boys and their farm. Their farm is within five miles of where i reside. Their involvement, along with the Younger clan, rode with Quantrill and "Bloody Bill" Anderson. They were members of the Knights of the Golden Circle and had associations with the KKK. Media and history books brandish their exploits that is known true however, local natives are quite aware of their involvement with many deaths that was unsolved. a reply to: Cancerwarrior



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 08:20 PM
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a reply to: dagann

After reading and learning more about Frank and Jesse recently I find their whole story amazing. I'm not trying to discount from any of the mythology surrounding Jesse James at all. Its just much different than Jesse because these guys killed indiscriminately whereas when you read some of the Jesse and frank stories and they at least seemed to have somewhat of a conscience. They had a flair for bravado whereas the Nightriders were absolutely cutthroat to all but only in secret.

Frank and Jesse garnered national attention willingly, these guys ruthlessly killed families . The James brothers never did that.

I can't find the link now, but there was one website I found that was talking about how West actually met up with Jesse during the war and they knew each other. The article also said that Jesse would stay with West (or maybe it was Kimbrell?) when he stayed in Louisiana. I'll try to find it and post it.
edit on 4-3-2015 by Cancerwarrior because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 08:23 PM
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a reply to: chiefsmom

Actually they say that they really don't know what happened to him either. Its all speculation.



posted on Mar, 5 2015 @ 07:32 AM
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a reply to: Cancerwarrior

I know what happened to Jim Carter.

He changed his name to Jimmy and became a joke of a president.



posted on Mar, 5 2015 @ 01:41 PM
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a reply to: Elementalist

It must be rough, being forced to read and participate in certain threads on ATS. You were forced to read this thread, right?

Oh, what's that? You weren't? You find history boring, yet you're on a conspiracy site. Come on, man.

Maybe what you need to do is find a thread explaining the difference between "then" and "than."

Then you might be taken more seriously.
edit on 5-3-2015 by mulder85 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 6 2015 @ 11:12 AM
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Great post OP, thanks for the history lesson I have never heard of the Nightriders.


Also good job not letting Elementalist hack the thread; Narcissists like that are all over this site and thrive on the attention they get from sounding smart and correct.



posted on Mar, 7 2015 @ 07:33 AM
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a reply to: Cancerwarrior

Good story! I appreciate your sharing it, for some reason I kept thinking of an old western that had a very similar story line, can't recall the name of it though.



posted on Mar, 7 2015 @ 07:19 PM
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I care for the present and future, things that can be changed. And now, the same powers from his story are creating our present and future


And they are worse then gangs.

Anyways back to your history lesson

*yawn*


Could you possibly be any more of a jerk? Out of the thousands of threads started here, many are whimsical, some are humorous, and some are akin to this thread. Did you really need to post here to try and shoot down / minimalize this thread because you feel it doesn't warrant the time of day? Do you do this in all threads? You do realize reading this thread is completely optional, correct?

OP, fascinating story - had never heard it! I enjoy American history because it was so radically diverse over just centuries. Many cultures can go thousands of years with little change.




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