|Indian Johnny and Joe Ibapah|
Nevada State Prison Inmate Case Files
Indian Johnny and Joe Ibapah
Indian Johnny (Shoshone) and Joe Ibapah (Goshute) were hanged in a double gallows at the Nevada State Prison in Carson City on December 7, 1906. They were convicted of killing Fred Foreman in Montello, Elko County. Ibapah, son of Antelope Jack, Chief of the Goshute Tribe, was born in Utah and twenty-four years old. Indian Johnny, twenty-nine, was also born in Utah. The 1907 State Prison Superintendent's Biennial report listed both men as vaqueros. In appealing for mercy, attorney E.L. Taber stated that both the convicted were drunk at the time of the crime and that Ibapah had become an alcoholic because his father habitually gave him whiskey at a young age. Taber also said Ibapah killed his father for abusing his wife.
The case was appealed to the Nevada Supreme Court. On June 12, 1906 the higher court affirmed the decision of the Elko County District Court. They two were the only prisoners executed at the Nevada State Prison in 1906. For more information see David Toll's article "The Death of Indian Johnny" in the Reno News and Review, November 1994.
Photo credit: The father, mother, and 2 sisters of Indian Johnny and their interpreter appealing to Governor Sparks to save the life of their son and brother. Courtesy of Nevada State Archives, GOV-0063. The photo originally was part of a 1909 calendar sponsored by Self & Sellman Mill and Building Company of Reno. At the time Johnny and Ibapah were executed the State Prison had just begun to take photos of incoming inmates so no file photos exist of these two prisoners.