Mr. Bill Bolden was often called Uncle Billly by his many friends in the area.  He was a well known and respected member of the community.  Granddad, as we called him lived in a farming area in northeast Missouri known as Brush Creek.  He lived there with his wife and an old horse he called Pomp. 

Granddad would often make his way into town for extended stays.  He'd put some clothes in a bag and walk to the county road and wait for someone to come along and take him into town. 

During these visits we would have a wonderful time together.  Granddad taught me how to roll cigarettes, chew tobacco, and catch fireflies. I will never forget the colorful songs he used to sing and of course his lectures on country wisdom.  It was on these visits that I heard the story of how he had hid Jesse James and his gang. 

Many people in the area have heard the story and offered evidence that Granddads' story was true.  Well, if it's not true, it sure is a good song. 

"I believe that Granddad Billy once saved Jesse James"

Granddad Billy 

Words and Music by Rick Hill 

Saxon Hill Publishing, BMI 3/8/16 

Well I believe that Granddad Billy  

Once hid Jesse James  

For a five dollar gold piece  

And a worn out golden chain  

We'd set out on his porch at night  

Oh the tales that he could spin  

Yeah, I believe that Granddad Billy  

Once hid Jesse James


He'd bounce me on his knee and sing  

Oh Da Do Dah Do  

Momma's little babies love shortnin’ bread  

And Rock of Ages too  

Then he'd lean way back  

In his old cane chair  

And draw from a an old worn pipe  

Yeah, I believe that Granddad Billy  

Once saved Jesse's life 


He said it was a cold dark night  

And there came a steady rain  

He heard the pounding of the hooves  

And shouts from five white men  

 By the dimming light of a coal oil lamp  

Uncle Billy brought them in  

Yeah, I believe that Granddad Billy  

Once saved Jesse James 


He said the man was tall and skinny  

And he had a southern drawl  

Said we're riding hard to escape the law  

For the robbing of a train  

For this gold piece and this chain  

Let us rest here out’ a the rain  

Yeah, I believe that Granddad Billy  

Once hid Jesse James 


 Every time he'd tell that story  

There was a glimmer in his eyes  

A long grin stretched across his face  

As he stared up to the sky  

Well he'd reach into his pocket  

Making sure the coin was there  

Then he'd fumble with that golden chain  

And lean back in his chair  

Yeah, I believe that Granddad Billy Once hid Jesse James