Henry McCarty was born in New York in 1859. By the age of 14, Henry was living in New Mexico and now orphaned due to the death of his mother from disease. He went from boarding house to foster home, getting to know some bad influences a long the way. By the time he became an adult, Henry was getting into trouble by committing petty thefts. In 1877, he got into an argument with another man at a saloon resulting in Henry shooting the other man to death. By this time Henry had started going by a fake name, William H. Bonney, but he was better known as Billy The Kid. From here on out, Billy lived a pretty violent life, and was involved in more than a couple of deaths throughout the area. His short life came to an end in 1881 when he was just short of his 21st birthday.
For many years the residents of Lincoln county, where Billy lived for a time, have seen his ghost wandering the area. This is one of the few ghost stories that I have heard where the ghost haunts the whole town. Whether he is looking for vengeance, reliving his glory days, or just hanging around, Billy’s spirit is still seen from time to time. A haunting reminder of the Wild West and the young life it claimed almost 140 years ago.
Photo copyright: Luc Novovitch/Danita Delimont