|R. E. Mather received her B.A. and M.A. from
Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. She has
been a researcher at the Salt Lake Genealogical
Library and an instructor at the University of Idaho
Extension Division, the University of Maryland,
and the College of Redwoods, Eureka, California.
You may contact Ruth Mather at: firstname.lastname@example.org
|F. E. Boswell received his B.A. from Humboldt
State University in Arcata, California, and an M.A.
from the University of Mississippi. He has been
an instructor for the Department of Defense and
Humboldt State University.
You may contact Fred Boswell at: email@example.com
Historians have long considered Henry Plummer to be the leader of a murderous band of robbers. Plummer's legend rests largely on accounts of his nefarious activities written after his death, particularly Thomas Dimsdale's The Vigilantes of Montana and Nathaniel Langford's Vigilante Days. In these works the authors present Plummer as the leader of an infamous gang of road agents who terrorized Idaho and Montana with robberies and murders. Plummer, who settled in Bannack, Montana, in 1862, supposedly became sheriff to cover up these activities. So great were the depredations attributed to Plummer and his gang that the settlers of Bannack and Virginia City rose as vigilantes and wiped them out. Plummer was hanged in Bannack in 1864.
Mather and Boswell present a revisionist view of Plummer's role and his hanging in this engaging book. It constitutes the first genealogical research done on the life of Plummer, and the authors present accurate biographical details of Plummer's life as well as information on the life of Electa Plummer, his wife. The book represents an enormous amount of meticulous work, and the authors boldly declare Plummer's innocence of all crimes attributed to him. This is a fascinating tale that will be certain to engender responses from critics of Plummer's role in the history of Montana.