Nickname/Alias/ Nom de guerre: “Stagecoach” Mary
c. 1832/ Tennessee
1914/ Cascade, Montana
Entrepreneur and stagecoach driver
What Makes Her Bitchin’:
She’s described in the African American Registry as a “gun-totin' female in the American Wild West who was six feet tall, heavy, tough, short-tempered, two-fisted, powerful, and…carried a pair of six-shooters and an eight or ten-gauge shotgun.” At roughly 60 years old, Mary became a mail-coach driver, the first African-American woman to hold the position in the United States. She earned the nickname “Stagecoach” for her deathly serious commitment to delivering letters and packages regardless of treacherous weather or unforgiving terrain.
Betcha’ Didn’t Know:
Mary spent roughly the first thirty years of her life as a slave. After gaining her freedom, she headed first to Toledo, Ohio, then Cascade, Montana, working for a group of Ursuline nuns at St. Peter's Mission. Mary was ultimately let go because, as Ben Thompson of Badass of the Week explained, she literally popped a cap in someone’s ass.
To learn more about this hard-drinkin’, no guff takin’ bad-ass, check-out:
Mary Fields, Rough Exterior with a Giving Heart
STAGECOACH MARY: A gun-toting black woman delivered the U.S. mail in Montana
Badass of the Week: Stagecoach Mary