Possibly the most famous and also most romanticized criminals in American history, Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow were 2 young Texans whose at an early stage 1930s crime main actor forever imprinted lock upon the nationwide consciousness. Their names have end up being synonymous with an image of Depression-era chic, a civilization where women chomped cigars and brandished automatically rifles, men robbed banks and also drove far in squealing automobiles, and also life was live fast because it would be therefore short.

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Of course, legend is rarely close come reality. The myth promotes the idea of a romantic couple in stylish apparel who broke the bonds of convention and also became a risk to the condition quo, who didn't are afraid the police and also lived a life the glamorous luxury outrunning them. The reality was rather different. Sometimes incompetent, regularly careless, Bonnie and Clyde and also the Barrow gang live a hard, uneasy life punctuated by small escapes, bungled robberies, injury, and also murder. They came to be one of the very first outlaw media stars after part photos of castle fooling around with firearms were uncovered by police, and also the myth-making maker began to work-related its transformative magic. Soon fame would rotate sour and also their lives finish in a bloody police ambush, but their dramatic and also untimely end would only include luster to your legend.

While the longevity of the story that Bonnie and also Clyde may be much more of a testament to the power of myth and also media 보다 to the couple’s actual attributes, there is no inquiry that your story continues to fascinate writers, musicians, intuitive artists and filmmakers. 

We explore nine facts about the genuine Bonnie and Clyde the you might or might not find in movie version of their story.

Bonnie and Clyde came to be famous, yet not for what they had actually hoped

As a boy born right into the family of a bad farmer, Clyde “Bud” Barrow’s great love was music. Bud love to sing and also play one old etc on the farm. He teach himself exactly how to play the saxophone, and also it appeared as if he could pursue a career in music. Affected negatively by his older brother Buck as well as a shady girlfriend of the family, however, that wasn’t long prior to young Bud’s interests turned from play songs to stealing cars.

Little Bonnie Parker also loved music cultivation up in west Texas, and also she likewise loved the stage. She perform in college pageants and talent shows, singing Broadway hits or country favorites. Bright and pretty, she called friends the they would view her name in lights one day. She to be a huge movie fan and imagined a future because that herself top top the silver screen.

Fame would pertained to both Clyde and also Bonnie, yet not as they had actually envisioned. Bonnie would eventually appear on the screen that she dreamed of, however only as component of newsreel reports detailing the exploits the her and Clyde’s criminal misadventures. Your fame spread out through (often inaccurate) reports of their criminal activities in local newspapers and also true crime magazines. Although castle at times reveled in the attention, most of the moment it do their resides more difficult since they might be an ext easily known by bigger numbers of people.

Clyde and also Bonnie never ever quite surrendered their dreams. Bonnie’s movie magazines were usually found left behind in the steal cars that police recovered, and Clyde carried his guitar till he had actually to leave it behind during a police shootout (he later asked his mom if she would contact the police to see if they would return it; they said no). Clyde love music appropriate up till the end—found in Bonnie and also Clyde's ambushed “death car” to be his saxophone.

Bonnie and Clyde didn’t spend lot time robbing banks

Movies and also TV have actually tended come portray Bonnie and Clyde together habitual financial institution robbers who terrorized financial organizations throughout the Midwest and also south. This is much from the case. In the four energetic years of the Barrow gang, castle robbed much less than 15 banks, some of them more than once. Regardless of the effort, they usually gained away with an extremely little, in one situation as little as $80. The few successful financial institution robberies connected with Bonnie and also Clyde were greatly committed by Clyde and also criminal combine Raymond Hamilton. Bonnie would sometimes drive the getaway car, however often she was not connected at all, staying at a hideout while the rest of the gang robbed the bank.

Banks were a complex proposition because that Bonnie and also Clyde, and when they to be on their own, they seldom attempted financial institution jobs. They an ext commonly robbed tiny grocery stores and gas stations, whereby the danger was lower and also the getaways easier. Unfortunately, the “take” native these type of robberies was additionally usually low, which expected they had actually to perform robberies more often simply to have sufficient money to gain by. The frequency of this robberies make Bonnie and Clyde less complicated to track, and also they found it much more and more daunting to settle all over for really long.

Bonnie didn’t acting cigars


The many famous photo of Bonnie mirrors her stop a pistol, she foot increase on the bumper of a Ford, a cigar clamped in she mouth favor Edward G. Robinson in Little Caesar. This is part of a arsenal of comic photographs clearly made because that Bonnie and Clyde’s very own amusement. Castle were discovered on undeveloped film the was exit at the gang’s Missouri hideout as soon as police struck the house. In one picture, Bonnie point out a rifle at Clyde’s chest, as he fifty percent surrenders with a smile on his face; another photo shows Clyde kissing Bonnie in exaggerated movie-star fashion.

These photographs, and Bonnie’s poems, also found in ~ the hideout, were mostly responsible because that making Bonnie and also Clyde famous. Newspapers anywhere the country reprinted the cigar picture. All proof shows, however, that Bonnie to be a tobacco smoker prefer Clyde (Camels seemed to it is in their desired brand). The mythic image of Bonnie as a mean mama puffing far on a stogie is just that: one image. ~ above the other hand, Bonnie chosen to drink whiskey, and also several eyewitnesses from the time remember seeing her drunk. Clyde shied far from alcohol, emotion that that was crucial for that to it is in alert in situation they essential to make a fast getaway.

Bonnie passed away a married woman – yet not to Clyde

Not usually known is the reality that Bonnie acquired married as soon as she was 16. She husband's name was Roy Thornton, and he was a handsome classmate at her institution in Dallas. The decision to marry was not hard for the young girl come make; her father was dead, her mother operated a difficult job in ~ a factory, and also Bonnie herself had tiny prospect of doing lot else however waiting tables or working as a maid. Marital relationship seemed favor a means out.

The marriage was a disaster. Unbeknownst come Bonnie, Roy was a thief and also a cheat; she referred to him later as a “roaming husband through a roaming mind.” He would certainly disappear for lengthy periods of time, and when he changed he would be drunk and also abusive. Bonnie take it to resting at she mother’s. Eventually, one of Roy’s schemes backfired, and also he finished up v a five-year sentence for robbery. He was still in prison when he heard of his wife’s fatality in the firm of Clyde Barrow.

Bonnie died with she wedding ring quiet on she finger. Divorce was not really an alternative for a known fugitive.


Bonnie and Clyde both had trouble walking

Convicted on lot of counts of thefts cars and also robbing stores (as well together one jailbreak), Clyde to be sentenced to 14 year at Eastham jail Farm, a notoriously harsh hard-labor penitentiary, in 1930. Clyde only served a year and a fifty percent of his sentence many thanks to his mother, who pleas come the branch of Texas led to Clyde’s parole. In those seventeen months, however, Clyde had been starved, violently abused through guards, and also raped consistently by another prisoner (who he ultimately stabbed come death, with one of Clyde's “lifer” friends accepting obligation for it).

Unable to take “the bloody ‘Ham,” together it to be nicknamed, Clyde chose to hobble himself in order come escape the challenging work detail. Making use of an ax, that or a other inmate chopped off two toes top top his left foot. Tiny did he understand that his mother’s plea would certainly be successful 6 days later. Clyde’s balance was never the same, and his walk to be slightly hobbled from then on. He likewise had to journey in his socks, since he couldn’t balance appropriately on the pedals of a vehicle while put on shoes.

Clyde was driving in his socks in the summer of 1933 as soon as Bonnie would endure an also greater injury. Clyde, recognized for his reckless quick driving, go not see a “detour” authorize for a road that was under construction. That missed the turn and also plunged down into a dried riverbed. The shattered vehicle battery spurted acid everywhere Bonnie’s best leg. Bonnie was brought to a surrounding farmhouse, and only the fast application the baking soda and also salve quit the burning far of her skin and also tissue.

Bonnie’s foot would never be the same after the accident. Since the pair had a lot of experience with nursing gunshot wounds, the leg at some point healed, but not properly, since Clyde could not take she to a real doctor. Witnesses described Bonnie as hopping an ext than walking because that the critical year of she life, and also often Clyde would simply lug her when she had actually to acquire somewhere.

Bonnie and also Clyde were dedicated to your families

Unlike many of their contemporaries in the criminal world, Clyde and also Bonnie were not lone wolf depending just on each other and a tiny group the like-minded criminals. Lock both had dedicated families that stuck by them through their worst times, and they constantly made every initiative to stay in touch with and also support your relatives.

Bonnie and Clyde made frequent trips ago to the West Dallas area, where their families lived, throughout their criminal career. Sometimes they would return because that visits multiple times in one month. Clyde’s standard method was to drive easily past his parents' house and also throw a Coke bottle through a note out that his auto window; his mother or dad would recuperate the bottle, which consisted of directions on where to meet exterior of town. Back the parents at first didn’t favor each other (Bonnie’s mother blamed Clyde for damaging her daughter’s life), they learned to cooperate by speaking in code on the telephone and arranging rendezvous.

When Bonnie and Clyde had actually money, their households benefited from their largesse; when they were struggling, injured or destitute, their family members helped them through clean garments and little amounts that money. At the time of his death, Clyde was attempting to acquisition land for his mother and also father in Louisiana. Eventually, several members the the Barrow family members would serve short jail terms for aiding and also abetting their famous relatives.

Ironically, Bonnie and Clyde’s devotion to family members would be your undoing. Barrow corridor member Henry Methvin seemed to re-superstructure a comparable devotion to his family. Clyde and Bonnie take it this as evidence of Henry's trustworthiness and did all they might to make sure he saw his own household as regularly as possible. Henry, however, conspired with his father to betray Bonnie and Clyde by alerting the police to your whereabouts in return because that his own pardon. It was on a pilgrimage to pick up Henry native his father’s residence that Bonnie and also Clyde were ambushed.

Bonnie and also Clyde were unwilling killers that released much more people 보다 they hurt

On the operation constantly, Bonnie and also Clyde can never rest easy; over there was always a opportunity that someone would become mindful of their presence, inform the police, and also create the possibility for bloodshed. This happened over and also over v their short and violent career—violent because, once cornered, Clyde would kill anyone in stimulate to avoid capture and a go back to prison. Fourteen lawmen passed away along the way. If it were possible, however, Clyde would more often abduct someone (sometimes a cop), do a getaway, and also then relax the person somewhere under the line. In much more than one instance, he gave the unharmed walk away victim money to get back home.

Public opinion turned versus Bonnie and also Clyde ~ reports that the murder of 2 motorcycle cops on Easter Sunday, 1934. Resting late in their car near Grapevine, Texas, Bonnie, Clyde and also Henry Methvin to be taken by surprise by the policemen, who suspected a automobile of drunks. Clyde’s injunction to Henry come kidnap the cops, “Let’s take it them,” to be misinterpreted as an encouragement to fire, and also Henry blew away patrolman E.B. Wheeler. The situation past saving, Clyde fired on the other cop, a rookie called H.D. Murphy, whose an initial day it was on the job. Murphy was around to get married, and also his fiancée wore she wedding gown come the funeral. The public, who had often cheered the brash and brazen outlaws, now wanted to view them caught—alive or dead.


Bonnie and also Clyde were complicated to embalm and they knew your embalmer

Bonnie and also Clyde famously died in a hailstorm that bullets shot in ~ their auto by one assembled posse that Texas and Louisiana lawmen. Avoiding to aid Henry Methvin’s father resolve his apparently broken-down truck on a Louisiana road, Clyde pulled the automobile to a stop when the posse opened fire without warning. About 150 ring later, Bonnie and Clyde put dead in their car, which was pockmarked with number of holes. No taking any chances, the leader of the posse, frank Hamer, also approached the car and also fired several added shots right into the currently dead Bonnie’s body. She hand still held part of the half-eaten sandwich that would certainly be her last meal.

The coroner’s report in-depth 17 feet in Clyde’s body and 26 holes in Bonnie’s body. Unofficially, over there may have actually been plenty of more. C.B. Bailey, the undertaker assigned to maintain the bodies because that the funerals, uncovered that the bodies had actually so countless holes in lock in so countless different places that that was complicated to save embalming fluid in them.

Assisting Bailey was a male named Dillard Darby, who had been kidnapped by the Barrow corridor a year previously after his auto had to be stolen by them and also he’d tried to retrieve it. In ~ the time, Bonnie was morbidly tickled to discover that the male they’d kidnapped was an undertaker, and also she request Darby to take treatment of the gang’s mortuary requirements in the future. Tiny did Clyde and Bonnie know when they offered Darby 5 dollars and released him that day the he would indeed address them after death.

Bonnie chosen to write poetry

In school, Bonnie chosen to comprise songs and also stories. She also liked to create poems. Once she to be on the run through Clyde, she had plenty of new material to compose about. Stewing in jail for a short spell in April 1932, Bonnie created ten poems the she grouped as Poetry from Life’s other Side. They to be poems around the lives of criminals and the women that suffered due to the fact that of them, consisting of “The Story of self-destruction Sal,” about a woman who joins a gang and is left come rot in prison by an uncaring man:

Now if he went back to me part time, Tho that hadn’t a coin to give, I’d forget all this “hell” he has caused me, and also love that as lengthy as ns live.

Bonnie continued to create her poems as the Barrow gang moved towards its unavoidable end. Written shortly prior to her death, the autobiographical poem referred to as “The end of the Line” confirmed no illusions around her and also Clyde’s situation:

They don’t think they’re also smart or desperate, They recognize the law always wins; They’ve to be shot in ~ before, however they execute not disregard That death is the earnings of sin.

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Some day they’ll go under together; and they’ll ask them next by side, come a couple of it’ll it is in grief— to the legislation a relief— however it’s death for Bonnie and also Clyde.

Bonnie and also Clyde go go under together, she head at rest on his shoulder in their fatality car, but they were hidden separately. Bonnie’s epitaph reads “As the flowers space all make sweeter by the sunshine and also the dew, for this reason this old civilization is make brighter by the stays of folks prefer you.” Clyde’s reads, simply and also accurately enough, “Gone yet not forgotten.”