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Word Count: 950
Jesse James Jesse James has to be one of the most well known outlaws of United States history Along with his brother Frank and their cohorts the Younger brothers they ransacked banks and trains across the western frontier while winning their way into history and the hearts of Americans Albert Castel takes the reader through the real life and death of the James gang Frank James was born to Robert and Zerelda James on January 10 1843 His younger brother Jesse followed him on September 5 1847 The James had a farm in Clay County Missouri Robert was an ordained pastor of a Baptist church as well a founder of William Jewell College at Liberty Zerelda attended school at a local Catholic convent The James name had a respectable and solid background until the late 1850s In 1850 Robert caught the gold fever that was sweeping the nation and moved to California Unfortunately all he ended up with was sickness and eventually death After Robert left the family Zerelda remarried two times Her second husband was Benjamin Simms who stayed with her only for a short while then died Later in 1859 she met and married Dr Ruben Samuel he dedicated his life to working the James family farm Together he and Zerelda had four children two boys and two girls It isnt known how well or how badly Frank and Jesse dealt with their awkward childhood actually no facts are known about either of the boys childhoods By 1861 most of Missouri was siding with the union during the Civil War however many slave holders in western Missouri sided with the Confederacy This was true for the James-Samuel family Young Frank joined the confederate forces of Major General Sterling Price at the young age of eighteen Frank fought for the Confederacy until they were driven into Arkansas From there along with many others Frank fled back to his home and family Cole Younger
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