(June 5, 1850 - February 29, 1908)
Pat Garrett was born in Alabama, raised in Louisiana, became a trail driver, hunted buffalo and tried hog ranching. It was in 1880 that would put Pat Garrett in the history books. He became sheriff of Lincoln County, New Mexico.
This county was in turmoil from the Lincoln County War and Pat began his pursuit of Billy the Kid. It was a cat and mouse game between the two. Billy was cornered, but fled, Billy was captured and sentenced to death, but escaped. Finally, on July 14, 1881, Pat waited in a bedroom at Pete Maxwell's Fort Sumner, NM house. Billy enters the room and asks in Spanish who is there, Pat Garrett fires.
On February 29, 1908, Pat Garrett was traveling from Las Cruces, NM to his ranch with Wayne Brazel and Carl Adamson. Pat got out of the buggy and while urinating a bullet slammed into the back of his head. He spun around from the impact and another bullet enter his belly. Wayne Brazel confessed to the killing, but most historians believe Jim Miller was responsible.
Information compiled by Steve Grimm
Drawing by Richard Florence
Books About Pat Garrett
How Pat Garrett Died by Colin Richards
This book concentrates on identifying the killer of Pat Garrett, but provides a brief biography in the beginning.
Pat Garrett: The Story of a Western Lawman by Leon Metz
Although the author concludes that Wayne Brazel killed Pat Garrett, this book is well done and remains my favorite Pat Garrett biography.