Badass Tombstone

James T. Whitehead

Born 1819.

Killed 99 Bears.

Died Sept. 25, 1905

Via Gentlemint

{ 80 comments… read them below or add one }

Jim April 27, 2012 at 1:33 pm

@ Michael D. Denny,
I am sorry Sir, your logic of “no big deal” does not hold up. Until someone else goes out and does it there is no disputing the size of the achievement. Your arguement is like the proverbial armchair quarterback who says “well shoot, I coulda thrown better’n that!” Until someone goes out and does exactly what you say, find a bear track, research the location and habits of the bear, and go out NINETY NINE TIMES, you are armchairing it.

E. S. Ashby May 28, 2012 at 12:19 am

Wow. Lot of tough guy talk and name calling on the internet. Pretty manly. Thanks to those actually sharing unfo on the headstone.

E. S. Ashby May 28, 2012 at 12:44 am

Im not supporting or admonishing anyone here. But those of you who have deviated from opinion sharing and into the boyish realm of name calling should find another place to post your

comments. Insulting people in
a forum where you risk no reprisal for your disrespect is about as unmanly as it gets. Save the John Wayne act for the bar, where you may actually have to back it up.

E. S. Ashby May 28, 2012 at 12:57 am

Animals kill each other. For food, defence of teritory, and a myriad of other reasons. Killing has its place and time. I seriously doubt this guy had 99 stuffed bears in his home. He killed to eat and make a living.

David R. July 6, 2012 at 10:28 am

Maybe there was an over abundance of bears at the time? It’s called population control.

And he killed 99 bears? I don’t see that as bragging, I see that as the standard.

Challenge accepted.

As for those of you who wish to save the animals? For every animal you save with your constant boo hooing, we will all eat 5.

So congratulations, by saving the animals of the world, you have also doomed them.

Eric Musgrove July 23, 2012 at 12:14 pm

To the nay Sayers and childish ones,.. Google Ben Lilly. Outdoorsman, strongman, hunter, & given credit for getting rid of the bear population in the gulf states. Pure history. Lived 1856 – 1936, I believe.

Eric August 11, 2012 at 10:25 pm

That is pretty badass

J.G. Miles Whitehead January 25, 2013 at 8:24 am

Holy Shit! My name’s James Whitehead!

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James Whitehead September 6, 2013 at 6:18 pm

As a fellow James Whitehead, I’m proud I killed 99 bears.

al November 7, 2013 at 8:11 am

I got 99 problems and a bears were all of them so I f*cking killed them.

Headstones California December 4, 2013 at 5:03 am

Some time some non sense thing happen in this world.Killing 99 bears make him a wonder guy or what ever ,then i think he is just a one of those stupid guy who do such kind of stuff and we still commenting on his act.

Jack April 7, 2014 at 4:50 am

Ladies and Gentlemen please allow me to make a few comments on the life and times of James “Tiger” Whitehead. The son of James “Wolf” Whitehead. He and his father are listed as such in the 1830 census for Carter County Tennessee. He earned his cash money by hunting predators that preyed on his and his neighbors livestock. He earned his nickname of Tiger when he spent more than a week tracking and killing what at the time was identified as a Tiger. My own research leads me to believe that it was in fact a Jaguar. The limit of the Jaguars range was middle Tennessee at the time, the poor state of knowledge of the natural sciences at the time, and the total lack of any record of a animal act or circus(until nearly 30 years later) for a source of a escaped Tiger. I think were the causes of the misidentification. Nobody had ever seen one and all they could think to call it was a Tiger. That being said he didn’t hunt for sport. He hunted for the bounty money to feed his family, which in time was to grow to 15 children. The wet forests and mountains that cover East Tennessee and the general lack of flat land for farming made his hunting all the more nessasary. The single shot flintlock he used was almost his downfall once. Having trailed a Bear into a thicket it misfired when the Bear charged. His solution to this problem was to stick the gun barrel into the Bears open mouth and shove it down its throat. He then jumped on the Bears back and stabbed it to death with his knife. I expect most all of you will not believe a word of this. But those of you who think that Tiger was a strutting peacock hunting down bears for sport are doing a great man a terrible disservice. As for his 100th bear. My Great grandfather and his brothers went to some considerable trouble to trap a Bear and take it down the mountain to Tigers house very much alive, a few years before his death. He was no longer able to hunt and roam the mountains he loved so well and they thought to make him a present of his 100th Bear. To his credit he simply looked them in the eye and told them. “Boys I didn’t hunt that Bear you put him back where you found him” and walked back in the house. They took him all the way back where they trapped him and released him. This is what my Great Grandfather told me nearly nearly 50 years ago now. As for the snipy comments all I can say is even today at least in that part of the world he is still referred to as “The Great Hunter”

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Atticus January 7, 2015 at 10:24 am

Is that real? If so, that is quite the achievement…

Terri Cochran Johnson June 26, 2015 at 5:15 pm

I just found out that Tiger Whitehead was also my Great grandfather how interesting

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M. Hodge January 19, 2017 at 1:28 pm

Jack, I enjoyed reading your comments about your ancestor Tiger Whitehead. You provide some very interesting details. I grew up in Carter County and so I am very interested in Tiger’s story. Would you mind answering a couple of questions. As you say, there is a “total lack of any record of an animal act or circus (until nearly 30 years later) for a source of an escaped tiger.” What is that source of information that appeared 30 years later? I have searched and searched for information about that circus and escaped tiger, but have found no hard evidence. Also, do you happen to know if folks in those days hunted panthers, what they might have called painters? Thanks very much.

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