Sheriff Galba E. "Galby" Branson

Sheriff Galba E. "Galby" Branson

Taney County Sheriff's Office, Missouri

End of Watch Thursday, July 4, 1889

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Galba E. "Galby" Branson

Sheriff Galby Branson and Deputy Sheriff Edward Funk were shot and killed by three brothers who supported a different political party as the sheriff while at a 4th of July celebration picnic in Kerbyville.

The brothers, who had been drinking, were brandishing their pistols around the crowd. Sheriff Branson and Deputy Funk approached the men, asking them to put away their weapons. One of the brothers pointed his gun at Deputy Funk, who drew his pistol in return. Another brother fired his pistol and struck Deputy Funk, and a shootout ensued. Twelve shots were fired, leaving Deputy Funk and Sheriff Branson dead. One of the brothers suffered a non-life-threatening gunshot wound.

All three were arrested and charged with murder. Two of the brothers were tried and acquitted on September 6, 1890. The charges were then dropped against the other brother.

Sheriff Branson was a United States Marine Corps and Army veteran, serving as a Sergeant in the Gasconade County Battalion with the United States Reserve Corps, Missouri Home Guard, and as a Corporal in the 31st Regiment, Missouri Infantry in the Civil War. He was elected Sheriff in 1888. He was survived by his wife and two children.

He is buried in the Branson Family Cemetery, Branson, Taney County, Missouri.


  • Age 48
  • Tour 1 year
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Acquitted

ambush, retaliation

Most Recent Reflection

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Sheriff Branson was murdered because he defended the Emancipation Proclamation and the Bald Knobbers who sided with the Union. On Juneteeth, I remember my great, great grandpa Galby Branson and his support of freedom.

Eric Martin
Great, great gandson to the Honorable Galby Branson

June 18, 2024

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