Weird History 20 Real Wanted Posters for Old West Outlaws  

Kellen Perry
84.8k views 20 items Embed

Genuine wanted posters from the so-called "Wild West" featuring real Old West outlaws are pretty rare. They were printed on cheap paper and meant to be thrown away after the fugitive was caught or killed. Luckily, a few Old West wanted posters have survived for our admiration. The existing Wild West wanted posters are typographical marvels, full of bold, jet-black serifs sprawled across audacious, ten-gallon headlines. The list below captures a few extant examples of the form for posterity.

John Wilkes Booth Wanted Poster (1865)


John Wilkes Booth Wanted Poste... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 20 Real Wanted Posters for Old West Outlaws
Photo: Library of Congress/via Wikimedia Commons

$500 Reward! (Year Unknown)


$500 Reward! (Year Unknown) is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 20 Real Wanted Posters for Old West Outlaws
Photo: Nova Scotia Archives/via Wikimedia Commons

Abduction of Katie Mary Curran (1874)


Abduction of Katie Mary Curran... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 20 Real Wanted Posters for Old West Outlaws
Photo: City of Boston/via Wikimedia Commons

$500 Reward! Murder! Murder! Murder! (1867)


$500 Reward! Murder! Murder! M... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 20 Real Wanted Posters for Old West Outlaws
Photo: Nova Scotia Archives/via Wikimedia Commons