December 3, 2017

Buncoed Jay: Denver Evening Post, June 12, 1899

Article transposed below.
(Click image to enlarge)

Denver Evening Post, June 12, 1899



Police Notified to Look Out for Harry Gilmore.




Gilmore Is Heading This Way After
Having Parted $6,000 From It’s
Owner—Aided by Two Accomplices
All Are Well Known in Denver. Where
Gilmore Once Stood Trial for Murder.


     The police have been notified to look out for and arrest Harry Gilmore, alias Jim Jordan, a gold brick swindler, well known in this city.
     Gilmore is now wanted in Seattle, wash., Where he and two accomplices are alleged to have buncoed a farmer out of $6,000 by the tin-box scheme.
     This is as old as the hills, yet it works with remarkable frequency. The scheme is to find an unsophisticated man with considerable money and engage him in conversation which may lead to the subject of the financial standing of some bank in which the victim has his money deposited, this fact being previously acertained by the “bunco man.”
     One of the “con” men also has some money in the same bank, or at least he says he has, but feels that the money is not safe, as he has heard that a run was about to be made. The victim does not like to lose his money, and the bunco man suggests that they both withdraw their accounts and thus save the money. At this stage of the game the “con” man says he has taken a great liking to the victim and says he would like to put his money in the same place with him. He suggests a tin box, and by his talk induces the victim to purchase the box and only one key. They meet the next day, and the bunco man as a bag of paper, on the top of which are several bills, to make it appear like a bag of money.
     He had a friend or two with him at the meeting and he and the victim place their money in the box, the victim to retain possession of it all the time. The boxes locked with the treasurer inside and the victim puts the key in his pocket. The “con” man then engages the victim in conversation and has him write a receipt, which necessarily compels him to put the box down on a table or chair. While he is engaged one of the accomplices who has brought a box with him which is just like the one the victim brought, grabs the box with the money and it and substitutes the empty one. As soon as the exchange is made the bunco men lose no time in getting away to “keep a business appointment,” and the unsuspecting victim carries home his empty box and deep down in his heart he wishes he would never hear from the men again.
     He changes his mind, however, when he gets home, and while he has a chance of counting the other man’s money while no one is looking he takes out his key to open the box. He finds that the key will not turn the lock, so he waits until the next day when he was to meet his kind friend. The friend, of course, does not show up, and the victim breaking open the box discovers that it is empty. Then the victim hurries to the police and wants the bunco men arrested.
     It was this scheme that Gilmore, alias Jordan, John R. Green, Alias Crooked Face Green, and J. F. Gray worked on a farmer at Walla Walla.
     All three of these men are well known in Denver as they worked on Seventeenth street during the latter part of the eighties and early nineties.
     Gray and Green are under arrest, but Gilmore got away and is supposed to be coming toward Denver. Gilmore alias Jordan, was once tried here for murder. In 1892 Cliff Sparks was shot and killed in Murphy’s Exchange on Larimer street. Several people were arrested for the killing, including Soapy Smith, Tom Keady and Gilmore, who was going under the name of Jordan. Smith and Keady got out of the trouble at a preliminary hearing, but Jordan had to stand trial and was acquitted. Previous to this he had been sentenced to 30 years in Joliet for murdering a hostler, and after serving 10 years of the sentence, was released.
     He and his pals worked many bunco tricks here, and they were in jail on numerous occasions, but were never convicted.
     The police here are keeping a lookout for Gilmore, and if he comes this way he will be landed in jail.
     As the Denver Evening Post indicates, John R. Green and J. F. Gray were arrested by the Walla Walla, Washington police. Several weeks later it is discovered that Green is wanted for murder.
     John R. Green, Alias Crooked Face Green is unknown to me, however, as this robbery occurred in Washington state, John Green may be con man and imposer Harry Green. Harry Green is the gentleman who Soapy became very angry with for using the name "Jeff R. Smith" in Washington, April 1898. I could not locate anything more on "John R. Green."
     J. F. Gray: I could not locate anything on "J. F. Gray." Is it possible this is John H. Morris, alias John H. Gray, T. J. Gray, "Fatty Gray?"
      Harry Gilmore, alias Henry Gilmore, Jim Jordan, "Gambler Jordan," is listed in my book Alias Soapy Smith, as Jim Jordan being his birth name, as listed in the 1892 Denver newspapers. In this instance an 1899 Denver newspaper states the opposite. I began to do some more digging and found that Harry Gilmore was likely his real name. I also found out a lot more about Gilmore's criminal history. See blog post for December 3, 2017.

James Jordan: August 3, 2011.
Harry Gilmore, alias "Jim Jordan:" December 3, 2017

Harry Gilmore, alias Henry Gilmore, Jim Jordan, "Gambler Jordan": pages 250-55, 257-58, 507, 520.

"It has ever been my experience that folks who have no vices, have very few virtues."
—Abraham Lincoln


1818: Illinois becomes the 21st state.
1828: Andrew Jackson is elected the seventh President of the U.S.
1833: Oberlin College in Ohio opens as the first coeducational school of higher learning.
1835: In Rhode Island, the Manufacturer Mutual Fire Insurance Company issues the first fire insurance policy.
1864: Gold is discovered near Confederate Gulch, Montana Territory.
1866: Completing the first Texas to Montana cattle drive Nelson Story, his cowboys, and herd arrive in the Gallatin Valley near Bozeman. The drive covered 2,500 miles.
1881: Dave Rudabaugh escapes jail and a death sentence by tunneling out of the San Miguel County, Colorado jail.
1881: John “Doc” Holliday is arrested, but acquitted, for firing a pistol inside the city limits of Tombstone, Arizona Territory.
1883: Outlaw William E. “Mormon Bill” Delaney rode into Bisbee, Arizona Territory with John Heath, Daniel Kelly, and others, where they rob a store killing four people, including a woman. Delaney stationed himself outside the store and was witnessed shooting down two men and may have killed the woman.

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