Exeter Creek Train Robbery



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Exeter Creek was the last holdup committed by the Wild Bunch in the United States before Cassidy moved to South America. Of course there are those who claim to have proof Cassidy was already in South America.  Others are certain Cassidy not only was involved, but set the entire thing up. That theory is that Cassidy and Sundance spent too much of the Winnemucca loot partying in Fort Worth and needed one more heist to finance the trip to South America.


The Exeter Creek train holdup near Malta, Montana occurred July 3, 1901 at 2 pm.  The loot has been reported as high as $65,000. Kid Curry was the one who blew the safe.  He even gave a gun to someone on the train as a sovenier.   There are numerous versions for this train robbery.  We like the one that goes like this.


On July 3, 1901, the Great Northern Express from St. Paul pulled into Malta, Montana.  One of its passengers sat quietly in the back with his hat pulled over his eyes.  He could not take a chance that someone would recognize him.  His face had been appearing on wanted posters since he made the mistake of having a photo taken in Ft. Worth, Texas a few months earlier.


As the train prepared to leave, another passenger with his hat pulled low stepped aboard.  He also was concerned about being recognized since he was in that same photo.  The first passenger, Butch Cassidy, looked up and acknowledged his partner, Sundance Kid, with a nod.


In the meantime, Kid Curry, boarded the train from the water tower above and hid behind the engineer in the tinder.  When the train began to move, he stepped forward with his gun pulled and instructed the engineer to keep the train moving until he was ordered to stop.  That order came about half way between Malta and Wagner at the bridge over Exeter Creek.


While Butch and Sundance kept the passengers covered, two other members of the Wild Bunch came out of the brush with getaway horses.  Kid Curry used dynamite to open the safe.  Within a few minutes, the Wild Bunch collected $60,000 and rode off in a cloud of dust.  They were headed for the Missouri Breaks on the Missouri River where Kid Curry had a hideout cabin in Hideaway Coulee.  They stayed there a few weeks before going back to Forth Worth.


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