KNIGHT (FAMOUS), PETE - Garland County, Arkansas | PETE KNIGHT (FAMOUS) - Arkansas Gravestone Photos


Greenwood Cemetery
Garland County,

5 May 1903 - 23 May 1937

Peter Charles “Pete” Knight, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and died while riding in the Hayward Rodeo in Hayward, Alemeda County, California. He was a four-time World Champion Bronc Rider, and won the Prince of Wales Cup, among many other prestigious trophies and awards. He began his competitive riding career at the Deep Dale Ranch near Crossfield, Alberta, during the First World War. He rose to be one of North America's most celebrated heroes. He began formal training at Deep Dale Ranch in Crossfield, Alberta, Canada, in 1918, and at the first competition he entered at Crossfield in June 1918, Knight won second place in the bucking contest. In 1927, he won the solid silver Prince of Wales Cup, an award commissioned in 1923 by the heir to the British throne, which was the most prestigious sporting award in Canada in its day. At the Hand Hills Lake Stampede situated near Drumheller, Alberta, Knight won the bucking horse event through four consecutive years (1924, 1925, 1926, and 1927) and the wild horse race event in 1928. He rode in and won many rodeos covering the United States, Canada, England and Melbourne, Australia. On March 21, 1932, Pete married Ida Lee Avant, whom he called “Babe.” They had one daughter, Deanna. In 1933, Country Music recording artist Wilf Carter recorded "Pete Knight, The King of the Cowboys,” and Knight performed screen tests and rode bucking horses in movies for silver screen star Tom Mix at Los Angeles, California. He held the Rodeo Association of America title “World Champion Bronc Rider” for 1932, 1933, 1935, and 1936. At the Rodeo held in Boston Gardens in 1936, Knight helped organize the Cowboy strike, becoming a founding member of the Cowboys Turtle Association (CTA) in 1936. On May 23, 1937, Knight was trampled to death by a horse called "Duster," at the Hayward Rodeo in California. He was buried in the Hayward Lone Pine cemetery; his remains were later reintered in 1960 at the Greenwood cemetery in Hot Springs, Arkansas. He is buried next to his wife and daughter. Pete Knight's cups, trophies, saddles and buckles became a permanent fixture at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA. In his hometown of Crossfield, Alberta, the town named its arena in honor of Pete Knight, and holds an annual "Pete Knight Days Rodeo." On a border crossing ships manifest, on the Ausonia, on July 14, 1934, from Southampton, England to Quebec, Canada, indicates that Pete was born on May 5, 1903 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Ida was born on November 23, 1906, in Cominto [Drew County], Arkansas. They were living in Fort Worth, Texas.

Ref: (accessed October 18, 2008)
Ref: (accessed October 18, 2008), Border Crossings: From Canada to U.S., 1895-1956 (accessed October 18, 2008)

Photograph courtesy of Patti Hays.

Contributed on 10/15/08 by mitzibitzi2
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Record #: 78960

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Submitted: 10/15/08 • Approved: 10/29/08 • Last Updated: 7/23/12 • R78960-G70450-S3

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