JESSE JAMES term paper

JESSE JAMES term paper - Wiggins 1 Jesse Woodson James was...

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Wiggins 1 Jesse Woodson James was born on September 5, 1847, to Robert and Zerelda James. Robert James was a Christian minister, extremely devoted to his profession. Young Jesse would at times be present and in complete awe when his father would baptize fifty plus people at one time. Robert was also a very intelligent man, receiving a Master of Arts degree from Georgetown College in 1848. 1 By 1850, the James family, headed by Robert and Zerelda owned their entire farm, along with a few horses, cattle, and sheep. Even though Robert was a hard working man and good provider for his family, Zerelda often complained in public about his constant absences from home and family activities. Sure, Zerelda was proud of her husband and glad that he was a diligent worker, she just wished that he would be more responsive towards his children’s needs along with hers. In the spring of 1850, Robert made a rash decision to accompany his brother out west in pursuit of the California gold mines. Judging by the fact that Robert was a focused worker and good provider, I believe that he most likely chose to make this move in order to escape the pressure from him wife to stay home often and take care of the family. I think that he wanted an adventure and found the California gold rush as an effective way to get an escape from everyday life. He claimed that a man knowledgeable of God’s word should venture out west in order to benefit the ones who are out there searching for fortunes. Even though Zerelda and his children begged him not to leave, Robert followed his brother out west to California. In order to explain himself to Zerelda, Robert swore that if he had not spent so much money on the preparations and had promised his brother, that he would not have gone on his venture, but that it was too late. During Robert’s journey out west to California, he suddenly died 1 Marley Brant. Jesse James: The Man and the Myth . P.9
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Wiggins 2 on August 18, 1850. Young Jesse was barely three years old, and his older brother Frank was just seven years of age. 2 Because of Robert’s early death, his sons really had no opportunity to get to know the man their father was, and what he stood for morally and religiously. Perhaps if Robert had chosen not to leave and had stayed alive for a large portion of his children’s lives, their fates may have been significantly different. Robert was a very gracious man, who made every effort to aid society by means of charity and good works, something he was never able to teach his two young sons. Even though Robert was not able to instill his good moral values into his young boys, they inherited a few of his desirable traits. Frank was a student of literature and often quoted Shakespeare and Jesse studied the Bible religiously, and often quoted scriptures from it. With no father around, the boys’ main influences in life came from their mother, Zerelda. Frank learned to be very persistent and hardworking; refusing to quit any task he started. Young Jesse picked up on her wonderful sense of humor and
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This note was uploaded on 04/19/2008 for the course HIST 375 taught by Professor Wachtel during the Spring '08 term at Maryville MO.

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JESSE JAMES term paper - Wiggins 1 Jesse Woodson James was...

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