(August 12, 1840 - April 29, 1907)
It is sorrowful that western history has largely ignored this great lawman. In trying to summarize his life, I am going to extract information from the two books listed below.
During his long career as a detective and peace officer in the Rocky Mountain area, Dave Cook personally arrested more than three thousand culprits. The first when he was nineteen and the last when he was past sixty.
From 1859, when he went to Colorado from the midwest to get his share of the gold diggings, he later became a soldier, city marshal of Denver, sheriff of Arapaho County, United States marshal, general of the Colorado Militia and founder and chief of the Rocky Mountain Detective Association.
He was an expert horseman, a master marksman with both rifle and gun and he had few pears in feats of physical prowess. He was absolutely fearless. In his warfare on the lawless, he gave no quarter and asked none. He never struck without cause and never hesitated to kill when necessary.
In my opinion, Dave Cook was the old west.
Dave Cook is buried in the Riverside Cemetery in Denver, Colorado.
Information compiled by Steve Grimm
Drawing by Richard Florence
Books About Dave Cook
Hands Up! by General David J. Cook
These are the reminiscences of Dave Cook originally published in 1882 and reprinted in 1958. There is no bragging, no tall tales nor any fable. These are the facts and events as they happened. You might be able to find this book in reprint.
Dave Cook of the Rockies by William Russ Collier & Edwin Victor Westrate
This book was published in 1936 and contains many of the same adventures covered in the book above, but adds perspectives from other people who knew Dave Cook. This book is very difficult to find. I happened to stumble upon it at some small book sale.