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I mean to kill you in one minute, Ned. Or see you hanged in Fort Smith at Judge Parker's convenience. Which will you have?
— Rooster Cogburn
I call that bold talk for a one-eyed fat man!
— Lucky Ned Pepper

Reuben J. "Rooster" Cogburn is a fictional character who first appeared in the 1968 Charles Portis novel, True Grit.

Cogburn was a veteran of the American Civil War who served under Confederate guerrilla leader William Quantrill, where he lost his eye. He was once married to an Illinois woman, who left him to return to her first husband after bearing Cogburn a single, extremely clumsy son (of whom Cogburn says, "He never liked me anyway"). Cogburn is described as a "fearless, one-eyed U.S. marshal who never knew a dry day in his life." He was "the toughest marshal" working the Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma) on behalf of Judge Isaac Parker, the real-life judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Arkansas (having criminal jurisdiction in the Indian Territory, as the bailiff repeatedly announces in both films). He shot a total of 64 men in eight years, killing 60. He killed 23 in four years and killed 60 by eight, all of whom he claimed to have killed in self defense.

He was recruited by the 14 year old Mattie Ross to hunt down the outlaw who shot and killed her father, a man named Tom Chaney who ran in a gang lead by Lucky Ned Pepper. Rooster was able to kill Pepper and most of his gang, while Mattie killed Chaney, but the young girl was bit by a poisonous snake in the fighting, and Rooster was forced to transport her to safety as fast as possible- first by running her horse so hard and relentlessly that he was forced to put it down, and then by carrying her and running across the desert fields on foot. He stayed to look over her until he was sure she would be safe- although her arm would have to be amputated. Twenty-five years after the Tom Chaney hunt, Cogburn wrote Mattie Ross a letter with a flyer enclosed saying he was traveling with a Wild West show and asked if she would like to come visit him when the show came to Memphis and swap stories with an old trailmate. He said he would understand if the journey were too long. Cogburn died three days before she arrived while the show was still in Arkansas and was buried there in a confederate cemetery in Jonesboro, Arkansas. When Mattie arrived in Memphis and learned of his death, she had his body removed to her family farm plot in Yell County Arkansas and has visited it over the years. His gravestone is entitled Reuben Cogburn.

Borrowed from: Wikipedia

Battle vs. Rooster Cogburn (1969 Film) (by UnCODlyGod)[]

Rooster Cogburn of the 1969 film, True Grit, steps out of a saloon with a bottle of alcohol in his hand. He mounts his horse and rides out of the little town, with onlookers waving at him. He waves back and heads toward the sandy hills. BANG!!!! A bullet wizzes by Cogburn's head. It scares him and causes him to topple off his horse. "Urgh" he says. He wipes the dust off his arm and another bullet lands right before his feet. He pulls a Winchester 1892 from a holster on his horse and runs toward the hills, ready to engage his enemy. "I aim to kill you enemy in one minute!" he shouts. "That's my line you old coot!" shouts the enemy. Suddenly the Rooster Cogburn of the 2010 True Grit steps from his cover. "And I am to kill you in 30 seconds" he retorts. He fires his Hnery 1860 at the '69 Cogburn, who dives. He fires back with his Winchester. The bullet lands into the newer Cogburn's foot. He stumbles and while he is on the floor he draws his Colt Dragoon. He fires off three rounds, one penetrating the older Cogburn's hip. He drops his Winchester and pulls out both his Single Action Army and Colt New Service. He fires one after the other. The 2010 COgburn amazingly escapes without a scratch. He follows suit and draws his Remington 1875 and Colt 1851 Navy, firing them one after the other. The '69 Cogburn is hit twice in the stomach and collapses. He makes one last stand by drawing his Coach gun, but the pain of the bullet wounds debilitate him , causing him to miss horribly. He desperately tries to reload but is too late. "Seems like Im the one killing you in under a minute," and the 2010 Cogburn pulls back the hammer to his 1851 Navy and fires.

Expert's Opinion[]

The sheer power of Rooster Cogburn of the 2010 era's weapons allowed him to prevail. The majority of them fired much larger caliber rounds. To see the original battle, weapons and votes, click here.

Battle vs. William Munny (by WinterSpider)[]

It's high noon...The stage is set, the players are here. Someone will die.

A lone cowboy rides into town on a horse. His children are waiting for him in San Francisco, and he is coming to Tombstone to collect on a bounty sent out for the kill or capture of one Jacob C. Povian, a Romanian fellow who had taken to cattle thieving, stagecoach robbery, and arson in an attempt to make his way in this new country. However Mr. Povian had no idea that one William Munny was in the mood to take that bounty.

As Munny rode into town with the man's corpse on his horse he was watched by the town's residents. One in particular, a long way from his usual home took interest in Munny. He had heard tale of the lone outlaw who had killed the Sheriff and deputies of the town of Big Whiskey some time ago, and wondered if this was the man. Rooster Cogburn had had his run ins with outlaws over the years, and some of them had even escaped. This one wouldn't be escaping him this time he thought to himself.

"Not again" Cogburn spoke to himself.

As Munny rode his horse to the Sheriff, he took a glance of his surroundings. He thought he spotted a one eyed fat man as he came to town, and considered leaving immediately after collecting his $300 for turning in Povian's corpse.

"Who the hell's that?" The Sheriff asked as Munny unloaded the body.

"This is Jacob Povian," Munny growled as he eyed the lawman. "He was wanted dead or alive in this state, California, and Colorado. Here's his wanted poster, now give me my money."

"Alright alright everything looks in order here." The Sheriff replied, as he disappeared back into his office, and reappeared with $300.

"Hold on a second there Sheriff," a voice called out, revealing Rooster Cogburn with his pistols at the ready. "That man there is an outlaw by the name of William Munny. He killed the Sheriff and Deputies of Big Whiskey."

Taken back at this incident being brought up, Munny glared at the fat man. "Rooster Cogburn..." Munny replied. "I see you're still kicking around. Despite your best efforts to drink yourself dead."

"Indeed. But it does not seem that I will die that way, outlaw." Cogburn retorted. "You however will go to Ft. Smith to hang, or you can die where you stand."

"Can't do that, got to get back to my kids. They'll be noticing I'm gone."

"Seems to me you should have thought of that before you became an outlaw."

Taking Cogburn's words into consideration, Munny took in his surroundings. The towns people were closing in, trying to get a look at what was happening. Munny had one shot to get out of this, but was he able to take it?

"Don't try anything funny, now Munny." Cogburn said. "I got a man in that building waiting to snipe your head off if you'd like to run." Cogburn bluffed, hoping Munny would give up easy.

With reflexes perhaps not as quick as they used to be, Munny grabbed a nearby civillian and held her in front of him.

"Don't shoot or she gets it." Munny growled this threat, with an equal bluff to Cogburn's. His Scofield a bit rusty from it's time in the wet.

There was a tense moment as both men eyed one another. Neither wanting to break their gaze for a second. Suddenly, the clock tower chimed noon as the two men reacted. Cogburn fired three shots in rapid sucession from his peace maker, and accidentally hit the woman as well as Munny's calf as Munny pushed her towards him.

"Dammitt, Munny!" Cogburn yelled as Munny limped into the sheriff's office. "Get your arrogant ass out here." Cogburn screamed. "Aww to hell with this" he started as he came in after Munny. The crowd had scattered at the instant shots went off.

"Fat bastard got me," Munny spoke to himself, "Better run out back. Bet I could lay down covering fire with my Spencer. But the damn thing is with my horse."

Munny decided it would be better to try something at all, so he fired rapidly with his Starr. With the double action he was able to keep Cogburn down for a second, but that was all he needed to make an escape.

As Cogburn took cover from Munny's barrage of fire, he spotted a deputy with a Winchester 1873. "Hey Henderson," Cogburn started, "Gimme your Winchester."

"You kidding me, Cogburn?" Henderson said incredulously, "You couldn't hit anyting unless it was your son."

Hearing this, Cogburn briefly accepted the sentiment in his head before punching Henderson in the neck and taking his weapon. Making sure it was loaded, Cogburn took cover behind a pair of barrels.Scanning the now empty square, Cogburn noticed Munny's rifle was missing from his horse. Remembering he was carrying a Spencer, Cogburn took care to show himself as small as possible, so he could draw him out.

"He's got fewer rounds." Cogburn thought to himself. "Better make him waste those."

Suddenly, he spotted a shadow run across the inside of a barn. Aiming his Winchester, Cogburn fired four consecutive shots to draw Munny out.

"He's firing wild," Munny said to himself. "He's just trying to make me scared."

Spotting an opening in the wood, Munny aimed his rifle through the hole. He took aim at Cogburn and noticed he hadn't been seen yet Munny took a shot. And another. Soon Cogburn took notice at being fired upon and returned fire. Munny failing to hit Cogburn with each shot until the last hit Cogburn in the hat. Munny got down from his spot and walked over to Cogburn's body.

"Can't say I'm sorry, but it was you or me." Munny told Cogburn's body as he aimed his Scofield at him. But Munny failed to notice the rifle barrel pointing at his knees. A shot rang out, and tore through one side of Munny's leg and out the next. Munny screamed a cry of pain as he staggered to the ground.

"You know the beautiful thing about the Winchester, Munny? I got double your rounds." Cogburn pulled a Colt Dragoon from out of his jacket, and aimed it at Munny's head. Munny, determined to not let Cogburn win completely said one thing in reply:


Cogburn pulled the trigger and splattered Munny's brains all over the sand.

WINNER: Rooster Cogburn

Rooster walked over to Munny's horse, and opened the saddlebags. Cogburn took the money from his opponent's saddle, and even found a bottle of whiskey.

"Maybe you weren't so bad afterall, Munny." Cogburn said to the corpse as he pulled the cork.

Expert's Opinion[]

None written.

To see the original battle, weapons, and votes, click here.