Tag Archives: Harpe brothers

The Harpes —Two Outlaws of Pioneer Times

On April 22, 1799, the Governor of Kentucky issued a Proclamation offering a reward for the capture of either or both of the Harpe Brothers. Reports of killings in Kentucky were followed by others from southern Illinois, then from east Tennessee, then again from Kentucky. Among their victims was one of their own children. Declaring that Little Harpe’s crying infant would some day be the means of pursuers detecting their presence, Big Harpe slung the baby by the heels against a tree and literally burst its head into pieces.

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