Study Guide

True Grit Chapter 7, Part 3

By Charles Portis

Chapter 7, Part 3

  • Rooster ties a rope around his waist and climbs down into the pit. Mattie holds on to him, and LaBoeuf uses Little Blackie to pull them up to safety.
  • Rooster shoots snakes as they ascend and it's all very Snakes in a Pit.
  • Rooster leaves LaBoeuf to guard the scene and then rides like a maniac to get Mattie to a doctor.
  • He wears Little Blackie out—literally. Blackie dies along the way, and it's super sad.
  • Finally, they reach Fort Smith at dark, and Mattie gets to a doctor.
  • She is semi-conscious for several days. On the third day (day ten of Mattie's journey) her arm is amputated above the elbow.
  • Mattie never sees Rooster again, though she hears about him from time to time.
  • In May of 1903 Mattie hears that Rooster will be performing in a Wild West show in Memphis, Tennessee.
  • She takes the train to visit him but she's too late. He died just a few days ago of "a disorder he called 'night hoss'" (7.331). He was believed to be sixty-eight years old.
  • Mattie has his body moved to Dardanelle and buried in her family's plot.
  • Oh, and Mattie? She never married but stayed at home to take care of her mother and lean in to becoming a wealthy businesswoman.
  • She hasn't seen LaBoeuf, who is now probably almost eighty years old, but hopes that if he reads he will get in touch with her, XOXO.
  • And then we end: "This ends my true account of how I avenged Frank Ross' blood over in the Choctaw Nation" (7.337)