Old West Lawmen List – J

Lawman Summaries (name begins with) A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

Dunk Jefferson – Served as a Texas Ranger in 1877 under Pat Dolan and was one of his most efficient men.

Napoleon Augustus Jennings (1856-1919) – A Texas Ranger in 1876-1877, he was with the group that ended the Sutton-Taylor feud.

Street in El Paso, Texas, 1888

Street in El Paso, Texas, 1888

Bill Johnson (18??-1881) – Though a known alcoholic, Johnson was hired as an Assistant Marshal in the lawless and violent town of El Paso, Texas, in September 1880. Described as the “town drunk,” he survived the brief reigns of three marshals before Dallas Stoudenmire took office in April 1881. One of Stoudenmire’s first tasks was to get the city jail keys from Johnson, who was drunk and stalled the new marshal. Stoudenmire became impatient, demanding the keys immediately, but when Johnson continued to delay, Dallas physically turned the man upside down, took the keys, and threw him to the ground. Later, Dallas fired the already humiliated Johnson, who was soon convinced by a couple of local “toughs” that he should go after Stoudenmire. On April 17, 1881, a drunken Johnson hid behind a large pillar of bricks with his shotgun, planning to ambush Stoudenmire. However, when Dallas and his and his brother-in-law, “Doc” Cummings, came by, the drunken fool fell down instead, accidentally firing two harmless blasts into the air. The marshal wasted no time returning fire, sending a number of bullets his way and leaving Johnson dead on the dusty street.

Edwin W. Johnson (1853-1931) – Born in Clark County, Arkansas, on December 13, 1853, Edwin became a deputy sheriff at Arkadelphia, Arkansas, around 1877. A few years later, in 1880, he made his way to Texas, where he worked as a deputy in Clay County. Continuing his lawman career, he became a U.S. Deputy Marshal in 1885, living in Graham, Texas, but working mostly in western Indian Territory. Unfortunately, Johnson lost his right arm in a gun battle with Bob James in Wichita Falls, Texas, in February 1888. But the determined lawman persevered, learning to shoot well with his left hand. In January 1889, while he and seven other lawmen were escorting four horse-thieving Marlow brothers from Graham to Weatherford, Texas, they were attacked by a mob, and an all-out gun battle erupted, in which five men lost their lives, including one lawman, two of the Marlow brothers, and two members of the mob. Five more, including Johnson, were wounded. In 1916, Johnson moved to Los Angeles, where he became a deputy sheriff, a position he held until his death on December 5, 1931.

Grant Johnson (1858-1929) – The son of a Black Chickasaw and Black Creek mother, Grant grew up to become a U.S. Deputy Marshal in Indian Territory. Serving under Judge Isaac Parker for at least 14 years, he began as a U.S. Deputy Marshal around 1887 in Indian Territory and was extremely effective as he knew the customs and language of the Muskogee Creek nation. Often working with Bass Reeves, the pair captured one of the most notorious outlaws in the territory, Abner Brasfield. Johnson also captured the noted counterfeiter Amos Hill; Choctaw outlaw Chahenegee; the murderers John Pierce and Bill Davis; the Cherokee outlaw Columbus Rose; train robber Wade Chamberlee, and dozens of others. Isaac Parker considered Johnson one of his most effective deputies during his career.

Earps Vendetta Ride by Bud Bradshaw

Earps Vendetta Ride by Bud Bradshaw

John “Turkey Creek Jack” Johnson (1852?-1887?) – A lawman and gunfighter, Johnson was known to be in Deadwood, South Dakota and Dodge City, Kansas before arriving in Tombstone, Arizona. He worked as a deputy marshal with the Earps and was part of the posse that killed Frank Stillwell in Tucson, Arizona.

William H. Johnson (18??-1878) – After serving as a Confederate captain in the Civil War, Johnson became a lawman and gunman. Deputy under Sheriff William Brady in the midst of the Lincoln County War, during which he was killed.

John “Liver Eating” Johnston, aka: John Garrison (1824?-1900) – Primarily known as a mountain man, Indian fighter and lawman, a number of legends surrounded him during his life, some of which are the basis for the movie Jeremiah Johnson. He served as a deputy and sheriff of Coulson, Montana in the late 1800s.

Frank Jones (1856-1893) – Served in the Texas Rangers beginning in 1874 and became a captain in 1887. He was killed in an outlaw shoot-out on June 30, 1893.

John B. Jones (1834-1881) – Joined the Texas Rangers before the Civil War and was commissioned as the commander of the Frontier Battalion of the Rangers during the reconstruction in Texas. In 1877, Jones ended the Horrell-Higgins feud. He died on June 19, 1881.

John G. Jones – The first U.S. Marshal under civilian rule in New Mexico Territory.

Bill Jordan – Serving with the U.S. Border Patrol, his accomplishments led to e development of the guns and gear used by law enforcement across the nation. (Read more in this article submitted by Concealment Express)

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

Also See:

Adventures in the American West

Lawmen of the Old West

Old West Photo Galleries

Who’s Who in American History

Lawman Summaries (name begins with) A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z