Santa Clarita Valley History In Pictures
> 1929 SAUGUS TRAIN ROBBERY   > LAW ENFORCEMENT
Tom Vernon Captured
1929 Saugus Train Robbery


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Webmaster's note.

This report references one or more of the enduring lies that the inept horse thief and train robber Thomas Vernon told about himself: that he was "Buffalo" Tom, the rodeo star; and that he was Thomas Averill, the fantasy love child of Jim Averill and Cattle Kate. He was neither.


ACME wire photo, 6½x8½ inches, distributed by Newpaper Enterprise Association, to accompany story about the apprehension of the fugitive Tom Vernon, wanted for train robberies in Saugus, Calif., and Cheyenne, Wyo. (Wire photo went out Dec. 3, 1929; Vernon was captured Dec. 1, 1929.)

Cutline reads:

SF BUREAU | AIRMAIL | CLEVE | NY ACME | DEC. 3, 1929

Tom Vernon, ex-cowboy and circus performer, and former convict, has been arrested at Pawnee, Okla., charged with wrecking and robbing the passengers on a Southern Pacific train near Los Angeles, and a Union Pacific train near Cheyenne, Wyo., identification being claimed through showing this photograph to robbery victims. Vernon is said to be the son of a couple lynched as horsethieves, the mob also lynching the boy. Indians cut him down before he was dead, and raised him. He learned locomotive firing while a convict in Folsom Prison, Calif., and is said to have served at least five prison terms in California, Pennsylvania and Ohio. Wyoming and California authorities are reported engaged in a battle to be the state allowed to extradite him from Oklahoma for trial.

California won the fight for extradition.



LW2982: 9600 dpi jpeg from original photograph purchased 2017 by Leon Worden.
1929 SAUGUS TRAIN ROBBERY

THE ROBBERY

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Passengers / Earliest Known 11-10-1929

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Daybreak 11-11-1929

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Newsreel Footage

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Loren Ayers x5

THE MANHUNT

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Boynton Story

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Pollack Story

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LAT 11-11-1929

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Vernon Captured

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Mugshots 12/1929

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Extradition 12-12-1929

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AP 12-19-1929

THE FAKERY

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REAL: Tom Vernon Prison Records

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REAL: Horse Theft 1920

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BOGUS: Tom Vernon Letters 1929-1963

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BOGUS: Tom Vernon's Fake Photo ID 1962

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BOGUS: Vernon's Own Story in 3 Parts

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BOGUS: Cattle Kate Story 12-7-1929

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BOGUS: Vernon Retells Story in 1953

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BOGUS: Sweetwater Incident 1967

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BOGUS Sideshow: Lester F. Mead
'Confessor' 11-1929

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REAL: Buffalo Vernon 1884-1939

THE AFTERMATH

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1957-1958 x3

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Pardon 1964

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Death Cert. 1967

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After the Wreck
No. 5042 x3

• A New Ending (Now Obsolete)


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