Clyde Barrow’s tackle box a prize catch at Heritage Sept. 14-15

Clyde Barrow’s tackle box

The contents of Clyde Barrow’s tackle box include two reels and eight wooden floats. Heritage Auctions image

DALLAS – When evading authorities after committing a crime, the ability to find food is critically important. Such was the case for Clyde Barrow, half of the infamous Bonnie and Clyde tandem whose exploits included a slew of wrongdoings, including murder and bank robbery. When running from the law, they often relied on fishing to survive, which was possible in part because of a tackle box found in Barrow’s car when the legendary criminal was killed. View the fully illustrated catalog on LiveAuctioneers.Clyde’s personally owned fishing tackle box (estimate: $5,000+) is among the unique items in Heritage Auctions’ Americana & Political Auction Sept. 14-15.

“To live the lives they did, the ability to fend for themselves was vital,” said Tom Slater, Heritage Auctions Americana director. “So they would fish using material found in this box: hooks, floats, weights. They did whatever they had to do when they were on the run, and this box helped feed them for years.”

The lot includes an affidavit signed by Frank Hamer Jr., son of the law enforcement officer and Texas Ranger who led the 1934 posse that tracked down and killed Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow in Louisiana. The affidavit describes the box and its contents, and explains that it was found in “the trunk of the 1934 Ford V-8 car used by Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker at the time of the shooting on May 23, 1934” and that Barrow and Parker were known to fish in the Brazos and Trinity rivers in Texas while hiding from law enforcement. Also included is a file of research material and a 1968 biography of Frank Hamer Sr., who spent considerable time tracking Barrow and Parker before leading the siege that ended Barrow’s life.


Clyde Barrow’s tackle box

Clyde Barrow’s tackle box is made of sheet metal. Heritage Auctions image

The box, which measures 14 by 6 by 6.5 inches, comes from the Estate of Robert (Bobby) Palazzo in Westlake Village, California. Made by Kennedy Kits of Van Wert, Ohio, it contains eight wooden floats, two reels, a spool of fishing line or twine, three “washers,” eight lead weights and eight brass swivel connectors.

It also contains an artificial flower taken “from Bonnie Parker’s Grave, Dallas, Texas 1988.”


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