Out on a rural Louisiana road on this day in 1934, two of the “public enemy” era’s most infamous celebrities, Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, were gunned down by a quartet of Texas officers, ending a two-year run of robberies and murders.
Some say they wouldn’t have been celebrities if not for a cache of photos and poems the two left behind on one of their many run-ins with law enforcement throughout the midwest. Bonnie, who in reality, possibly never did any of the killing, was immortalized in newspapers smoking stogies and fawning over Clyde, that America ate up in illicit stacks.
Hollywood didn’t sink its teeth into the folklore of it until the late 60s via Aurthur Penn’s Bonnie and Clyde, but when it did, the late Merle Haggard followed suit a year later. Even got his wife, country singer Bonnie Campbell to duet, on “The Legend of Bonnie and Clyde,” a knee-slapping eponymous title-track tale of the famous couple’s glory days:
Bonnie was a waitress in a small cafe
Clyde Barrow was the rounder that took her away
They both robbed and killed until both of them died
So goes the legend of Bonnie and Clyde