William Elliott Wiley

William “Colorado Bill” Wiley was a Union Army veteran who moved west after the Civil War, ultimately settling in Muskogee, Indian Territory.

In February 1879, David Brown and Ross Cunningham went to the brothel where Wiley lived. When the two men overstayed their welcome, Wiley urged them to leave. When Brown reached for a gun, Wiley shot and killed him and wounded Cunningham.

At trial, Wiley was convicted and sentenced to death. He was hanged at Fort Smith on September 5, 1879.

Author: Bill Lofquist

I am a sociologist and death penalty scholar at the State University of New York at Geneseo. I am also a Pittsburgh native. My present research focuses on the history of the death penalty in Allegheny County (Pittsburgh), Pa. This website is dedicated to collecting, analyzing, and sharing information about all Allegheny County cases in which a death sentence was imposed. Please share any questions or comments, errors or omissions, or other matters of interest related to these cases or to the broader history of the death penalty in Allegheny County.

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