This week TwoDot Press, a subsidiary of Globe Pequot Press, released my latest book, Outlaw Tales of Missouri. The last in what I call my "Missouri trilogy" of state history books, it covers the famous and not-so-famous characters that gave Missouri the nickname of "The Outlaw State".
I've dredged the files of the State Historical Society of Missouri to find forgotten stories and little-known facts, like the tale of the Yocum brothers, who made their own silver currency in the Ozarks that was valued more than money issued by the federal government. I've also looked at familiar tales from new angles. No book on Missouri outlaws would be complete without a chapter on the James brothers, but rather than focus on Jesse, I concentrate on his older brother Frank, who got into outlawry earlier and got out sooner. Unlike Jesse, he managed to die a peaceful death.
It's a fun read, if I do say so myself, and fans of Missouri history and the Wild West will find a lot here they like. Civil War buffs will like it too, since there are chapters on the notorious William Quantrill and a lesser-known rogue who went under the alias "Harry Truman" but who was definitely NOT related to the president from Missouri!
The book is available here. My other Missouri history books include Missouri: An Illustrated History and It Happened in Missouri.