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From a Former Texan - Some Early Kimble County History

Published August 5th, 2014 by Unknown

Editor Frontier Times.

Bandera, Texas.

I am an old timer from Texas, and, a few weeks ago a neighbor who recently came here to live, called on me. She learned that I was from Texas, and asked me if I remembered any frontier happenings. I mentioned that I distinctly remembered the killing of Isaac Koontz and a Spears boy by the Indians in the winter of 1876, when I was a small child. She then told me she had the story of the same incident in a Texas magazine of frontier history. After she went home she called me up and read to me over the phone the account of it by John A. Miller, in the issue of Frontier Times for September, 1927.

Well, that brought back a good many memories of my childhood, and things that I had almost forgotten; so the next day the lady brought me an armful of old numbers of Frontier Times that she has kept. I am certainly enjoying them. I am writing a letter which I hope you will print in Frontier Times. I may be able to hear from or of some one I knew, or some of their relatives. I will be glad to have letters from any one who cares to write to me. My name is Lucy Sessom, and my step-father was John W. Miller, an Englishman, who taught the first school in Junction, before it was incorporated. I think there were fourteen or fifteen pupils in the school. The next teacher was a Mr. McArthur, and after him a man named Beatty, who taught one term and later returned to England. Merritt Meeks was my grandfather. His sister, Lucy, married John Butler. I was named after her. My grandmother was Sally Burden. The Meeks family owned a good deal of land, and their slaves stayed on with them after the war. W. A. or Bill Meeks was the first sheriff of Kimble county, as well as I can remember. I still remember hearing it said that he was "the tallest man this side of the North Pole," and that he "stood seven feet in his stockings." He had a son, Joe Meeks, also two daughters, Mrs. Will Robbins and Mrs. W. H. McClintock, both living now, I think, in Rosewell, New Mexico.

My sister, Dora Sessom, and Uren Kirkland were the first couple to be married in Junction. They were married by Dr. Spear. My brother is Bob Sessom. He now lives in Duncan, Arizona. My half-brother, Charlie Miller, lives at Miley, Texas. Ile was inspector for the Northwest Cattle Company for thirty years.

My stepfather first lived on the North Llano, and later moved to Johnson Fork, where he raised crops and hogs. He lived there about twenty years.

I remember Bill and Mack Potter, who lived on the North Llano; John and Sis Butler, who lived on Cypress river in Monett also Pleas Wemley, son of old Man William Wemley, the first man to put in a grist and saw mill in Blanco City. It must have been sixty years ago. I also remember the Patterson family. There were two boys; one was named Cummins or Cummings. If there are any of the Joy family living they will remember me. The children were Lewis, Doe, Helen, Effie, Henry, Pearl and Mandy, who died before I left there.

I often visited in Kerrville and Menardville. I was married in London, Kimble county, to Joe Boyce. We were married by his brother-in-law, Len Lewis. If J. A. Miller has a son, Frank, living he will remember me. I lived for a long time with my aunt, Nan Harris.

There was often great excitement among the scattered settlers, when there was an Indian raid, or outlaws and cattle rustlers sent terror to the hearts of women and children. I well recall how Jesse James looked when he dashed up to my mother's door once on a long-legged sorrel, and ordered her to prepare him a meal in a hurry. He wore a heavy mustache. I know how frightened pioneer children were at the mention of Sam Bass, Ben Thompson, and other outlaws. I can still remember the time when Reuben Boyce escaped from jail, and the names of some of the members of a cattle rustling gang who were caught and sent to prison. Also I recall the time when Tom Doran shot Ed Spears in a fight in Bill Meek's saloon, and how people were worked up over it. This occurred in Junction. I also remember Dick Durkin, Bill Allen and John Potter, who were said to belong to a band of outlaws or rustlers. Another neighbor of ours was named Butler, and we had friends living on the Salines. I would like to hear from any of them, or their children. My name is now Rasmussen. I married Harry Rasmussen, of Denmark, in 1899. He passed away last year.

Mrs. Lucy Rasmussen,

Duncan, Arizona.

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