Researched and Compiled by Faye Bell (SLC) 2013


            James W (Fatty) Allen was born in Missouri to James and Mary Allen in 1868.  Both parents were born in Missouri, as well.  There were several other children in the Allen family by 1880:  Minnie, Samuel, Josephine, Jacob and Amanda.  They lived in Union, Cooper, Missouri at that time.  Between that time and 1920, tracing James W Allen was difficult.  However, he had a land patent #00041, Windriver, Worland District Office and the Big Horn Basin that is permitted to “Fatty Allen.”  In 1920 he owns his holdings, is 50 years old and lives in Election District #2 of Washakie County and considers himself a rancher. It appears that James W (Fatty) Allen stayed singled all of his life.  His nearest neighbor on the U .S. Census 1920 was Elijah (Lije) Thaxton.  The Worland Grit printed on [Thursday]April 30, 1925 that J W Allen had been found dead at Nowood on Sunday [April 26]. 



Memories:  in 1945 Fae and Millard Moses (my parents)  had taken on a project to make markers for unmarked graves of  persons interred in the Ten Sleep cemetery.  Millard cut the 12x12 inch squares of tin, Fae penciled in the name, then used a nail and hammer to etch the name in, painted the tins white and the names in black.  She was working on James Allen when Millard told her that was ‘Fatty Allen’.  Since then, the markers were replaced with smaller bronze and steel furnished by Veile Mortuary of Worland.   Fb


Worland Grit April 30, 1925




J. W. Allen, better known over the Basin country as Fatty Allen, a rancher, who lived on a homestead on the No Wood about 17 miles south of Ten Sleep, was found dead by two neighbors, George Thaxton and Ellis Allred, on Sunday.  Allen had not been seen for several days.  Although some one passing the place on Thursday saw his horse standing near the house with the saddle on; the horse was seen again on Saturday, and it is the belief that the unfortunate man had been lying dead for three or four days.  Conditions under which the body was found indicated that he had been preparing a meal, and had dropped dead on the floor by a table where he had been slicing bacon Monday morning. Sheriff Koontz and undertaker Fred Veile went over to the Allen ranch, stopping at Ten Sleep to pick up Chas. Landis, Justice of the Peace, who in the absence of the coroner, held the inquest.  The jury consisted of Roy Shriver, Lige Thaxton and Dave Breden (Breeden).  These gentlemen brought in the verdict that the deceased came to his death from natural causes unknown to them, but presumably heart failure.  The remains were taken to Ten Sleep and laid at rest  in the cemetery at that place.  Mr. Allen was a bachelor 57     years of age and came from Missouri almost 15 years ago locating on the homestead on the No Wood river and is a distant relative of Mrs. McPike who resides in Worland.


            It appears that he had not been feeling very well and several nights before his dead body was discovered, he got up about three o’clock in the morning saddled his horse and rode over to the home of Fred Gloy a neighbor and informed him that he was sick and was afraid he was going to die and did not want to die alone over at his cabin.