Bonnie and Clyde Killed

FBI photo of the car carrying Bonnie and Clyde after the shootout
FBI photo of the car carrying Bonnie and Clyde after the shootout

Historical Context

Perhaps the most famous outlaws of the 'public enemy era' in America between 1931 and 1934 were Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, two lovers who roamed around the United States committing robberies during the Great Depression with their gang.

Bonnie met Clyde when she was 19 and her then-husband, who she had married at the age of 16, was in prison for murder. From 1932, she and Clyde teamed up with their Barrow Gang members and robbed banks in several states (although they preferred to rob smaller stores.) During their time on the run, the gang killed at least nine police officers and four civilians.

They were known nationwide; Bonnie in particular gained a reputation as a chain-smoking, machine-gun wielding killer in the popular press of the day, particularly after a photograph police found in a hideout showing her with a cigar and handgun was published.

The duo broke some of their gang members out of a Texan jail by attacking it with machine guns in 1934, triggering the hiring of former Texan Ranger Frank Hamer to hunt them down. He tracked them to Louisiana, and the couple were ambushed by police waiting in the bushes, and they died in a hail of gunfire; more than 130 rounds were fired at them.

The 1967 film Bonnie and Clyde starring Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty helped create a lasting interest in the duo, particularly because of the romantic aura that surrounded them at the time and since their deaths.

Photo Info

Photographer: FBI
Date taken: May 23, 1934
Location taken: near Sailes, Louisiana, USA

Source: Wikimedia Commons

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