“Stagecoach” Mary Fields
“STAGECOACH” is a smaller version of K. CARSON. The overall length of this full tang O1 tool steel blade is 6″. The smaller blade length of 3 1/8″ features white liners and brass pins accent the beautiful Maple Burl and Fiddleback hand-shaped handle. “STAGECOACH” comes with a handcrafted leather sheath.
Overall Length: 6”
Blade Length: 3 1/8”
Availability: 24 in stock (can be backordered)
“Stagecoach” Mary Fields
c. 1932 Hickman County, Tennessee – 1914 Great Falls, Montana
Bandits beware: In 1890s Montana, would-be mail thieves didn’t stand a chance against Stagecoach Mary. The hard-drinking, quick shooting mail carrier sported two guns, men’s clothing and a bad attitude. As the first African American woman to carry mail, she stood out on the trail—and became a Wild West legend. Rumor had it that she’d fended off an angry pack of wolves with her rifle, had “the temperament of a grizzly bear,” and was not above a gunfight. But how much of Stagecoach Mary’s story is myth?
Born Mary Fields in around 1832, Fields was born into slavery, and like many other enslaved people, her exact date of birth is not known. Even the place of her birth is questionable, though historians have pinpointed Hickman County, Tennessee as the most likely location. At the time, slaves were treated like pieces of a property; their numbers were recorded in record books, their names were not.
From History: Meet Stagecoach Mary, the Daring Black Pioneer Who Protected Wild West Stagecoaches: https://www.history.com/news/meet-stagecoach-mary-the-daring-black-pioneer-who-protected-wild-west-stagecoaches
In 1884, Mother Amadeus was sent to Montana Territory to establish a school for Native American girls at St. Peter’s Mission, west of Cascade. Learning that Amadeus was stricken with pneumonia, Fields hurried to Montana to nurse her back to health. Amadeus recovered, and Fields stayed at St. Peter’s, hauling freight, doing laundry, growing vegetables, tending chickens, and repairing buildings, and eventually became the forewoman.
The Native Americans called Fields “White Crow”, because “she acts like a white woman but has black skin”. Local whites did not know what to make of her. One schoolgirl wrote an essay saying, “She drinks whiskey, and she swears, and she is a republican, which makes her a low, foul creature.”
In 1894, after several complaints and an incident with a disgruntled male subordinate that involved gunplay, the bishop ordered her to leave the convent. Mother Amadeus helped her open a restaurant in nearby Cascade. Fields would serve food to anyone, whether they could pay or not, and the restaurant went broke in about 10 months.
From Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Fields
*note: Discrepancies (particularly in dates and names) are left as printed from their original sources. Due to the lack of status among non-whites historically, records were not accurately kept.