Banner front page on May 23, 1934

Banner front page on May 23, 1934

Editor’s note: Main Street Nashville reprints some of the best front pages from the Nashville Banner, an afternoon newspaper that published from 1876 to 1998. The pages are courtesy of the Nashville Public Library, Nashville Banner Collection.



The shooting deaths of notorious bank robbers Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow led the front page of the May 23, 1934, Banner.

With the headline “Desperado and girl pal killed,” the story detailed a posse’s ambush of the criminal couple near Gibsland, Louisiana.

Parker and Barrow were killed before they could fire a shot, and their bodies and automobile were riddled with bullets. The two had driven into a posse’s ambush arranged by a former captain of the Texas Rangers, Frank Hamer.

The posse had been hiding in the brush along the highway. As Barrow’s car approached, an officer yelled for the couple to halt. The two reached for their guns, and the posse unleashed a barrage of bullets upon them.

Parker died with her head between her knees and a machine gun on her lap. Barrow was gripping a revolver.

The couple had been cornered previously but had either eluded authorities or shot their way out.

Barrow was wanted for a dozen killings, including of a guard at the Texas State Prison Farm, two state highway patrol officers and a constable. Parker was accused of participating in most of Barrow’s later crimes.

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