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 John Simpson Chisum

John Simpson Chisum

Hardeman County, Tennessee, USA
Death 22 Dec 1884 (aged 60)
Eureka Springs, Carroll County, Arkansas, USA
Burial Paris, Lamar County, Texas, USA
Plot Next to railroad tracks
Memorial ID 9915 · View Source
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Rancher, beef contractor for CSA. He herded cattle over many trails, but not to the extent of Loving, Goodnight or Slaughter.

From the Clarksville Standard, January 9, 1885:

John S. Chisum, long known as one of the cattle kings, died at Eureka Springs on the 22nd (Dec. 22, 1884) and was buried at Paris, Lamar County, (Texas) where the Chisum family lived in 1842, and where his father and mother died. When he came to Clarksville, John was a clerk of Wright & Montgomery, and was a merry hearted, laughing boy. Our last sight of him was in 1854 when he lived on the line of Cooke and Denton. Since then he had emigrated to New Mexico in pursuance of his business, and had become the owner of many thousands (head) of cattle. He was, we believe, never married. There are a few old residents of Clarksville who will remember John Chisum as he was in boyhood.


Chisum moved to Texas when he was 13. By the age of 30 he had started his own ranch and sold beef to the Confederacy during the Civil War. Chisum partnered with Charles Goodnight for a time before relocating to New Mexico where he quickly took control of the Pecos River Valley and became a target for rustlers throughout the Territory. Chisum sided with the Tunstall/McSween faction in their fight against Murphy/Dolan and reportedly offered to pay the Regulators (including Billy the Kid) for their service (a deal he later reneged on). After the war, when Billy turned to rustling, he frequently stole from Chisum’s herds, feeling it was his way of getting the money Chisum owed.

-bio courtesy of Billy the Kid Outlaw Gang's website.

Family Members

  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 12 Jun 2000
  • Find A Grave Memorial 9915
  • Tim & Gail
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for John Simpson Chisum (16 Aug 1824–22 Dec 1884), Find A Grave Memorial no. 9915, citing Chisum Family Cemetery, Paris, Lamar County, Texas, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave (contributor 8) .