Jacob “Blake Jake” Yoes – U.S. Marshal

Jacob “Blake Jake” Yoes

Jacob “Blake Jake” Yoes

Jacob “Blake Jake” Yoes was a miner, soldier, entrepreneur, and one of the best-known of Judge Isaac Parker’s U.S. Marshals.

Jacob Yoes was born on December 3, 1839, in Washington County, Arkansas, to Reverend Conrad and Kissiah Bloyed Yoes. He left home at the age of 17, later married Mary Ann Reed, and worked in the lead mines in Granby, Missouri. In 1862, he enlisted in the First Arkansas Cavalry of the U.S. Army where he fought in the Battle at Prairie Grove. During his service, his primary task was fighting bushwhackers, of which he is said to have killed about 50 men. He took shots in both hips and the left leg along the way. In 1864, he refused a 1st Lieutenant’s commission and was discharged.

In 1870, he established a country store near Winslow, about 25 miles south of Fayetteville, Arkansas, and about the same time, was elected as the Washington County Sheriff. Yoes entrepreneurial spirit continued as he built several stores all along the Frisco Railroad between Fayetteville and Fort Smith, established a flour mill, and owned interests in a canning factory and several hotels. Later, he would also serve in the Arkansas legislature.

In May of 1889, he was appointed U.S. Marshal of the West District of Arkansas, with 200 deputies under his command. Later, he developed several real estate interests, and the community of Yoestown, Arkansas, was named for him. Jacob Yoes died on February 6, 1906, and was buried in the National Cemetery at Fort Smith, Arkansas.

© Kathy Alexander/Legends of America, updated November 2022.

Also See:

Adventures in the American West

Lawmen of the Old West

Lawmen & Gunfighters Photo Gallery

U.S. Marshals – Two Centuries of Bravery