Iman family notes

Jesse James shoots Solomon Iman!


Nina Jo (Iman) Jennings


(contributed by Raymond L. Iman, 806 N. Craig St., Mexico, MO 65265. Iman notes that he received the account as handwritten correspondence with the author. The Robyn referred to in the article is Robyn Jennings, her daughter. The events of the article took place in 1880..)

The Mystery Behind Robyn's Great-Great-Great Grandpa Solomon Iman

Recently Robyn went to a family reunion (1993) and her fourth cousin, Cleve Iman, told this story. Solomon was his grandfather.

Solomon Iman was a strong, hard-working man. He ran a river ferryboat at Lexington, Missouri and a small farm to feed his family. He ran into the James gang (a.k.a. bank robbers; bad guys) many times since his ferry was on the road they took often to get to their hide-out in Richmond, Missouri.

Frank and Jesse James would come to Solomon's house demanding to be fed and to exchange their tired horses for Solomon's fresh horses. They knew he was very afraid of them and took advantage of him often. Solomon was afraid for his family and always gave them whatever they wanted.

One time there were being chased and they came to Solomon's ferry in a big hurry. Solomon took the gang across while Jesse stayed behind and hid in the bushes. When he came back to take Jesse, Jesse shot him, threw him in a hog lot and took himself across. That way Solomon wouldn't be able to tell the men chasing them which way they went.

No one knew for a very long time what happened to Solomon. Everyone though he had too much to drink and had stumbled into the hog lot. No one could figure out how the ferryboat got to the other side.

Solomon had a black man who worked for him farming. He saw Jessie James shoot Solomon and was so scared he hid in the woods for a long time for fear Jessie would find out what he saw and come shoot him too. When he finally came out he told this story and now it can be passed on for generations.