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Vol 04 No. 08 - May 1927

An Indian Boy Executed In Fredericksburg in 1852

It was the white man's fault," declared Mrs. G. O. Otte, an eye witness of the Fredericksburg tragedy ire 1852, "that there ever was any trouble between the Indians and my people."

The feeble light of an oil lamp sparsely illuminated the small room of Mrs. Otte's farm house, where she sat amidst a small family group reminiscing of the days gone by. The oil lamp was burning low and the final hour of day was waning, thus providing a symbolic setting to her own life which had attained the seriptual height of four-score years.

She told how as a girl of five years of age she came over from Germany with her parents, who settled at Fredericksburg, then a frontier village of barely 300 inhabitants. Hundreds of Comanche Indians had their wigwams just one hundred yards from the Otte home on the eastern border of the little German village.

A close bond of friendship existed between the red man and the white settlers of the town. The white man exchanged his commodities for the hunting trophies of the Comanche. Their children played together.

Then came the tragedy, Mrs. Otte's oldest sister, Caroline, was employed in the home of the butcher of the town. One morning early in the summer of 1852, an Indian boy, about 13 years of age is supposed to have come to the butcher's home holding one hand on his mouth and the other on his forehead, indicating that he was hungry and suffering from a headache. The butcher's wife was preparing food and medicine for the boy, when her husband entered the house. He is supposed to have grabbed for the boy, who with Indian alertness jumped behind the woman and begged her to protect him. She did not intervene. The boy was caught, his hands and feet securely tied, loaded on the butcher's wagon and taken to the Nimitz Hotel, until recently a landmark of the now prosperous town.

"A crowd gathered, among them my playmates and I," Mrs. Otte related. "After a lengthy conference, the mob moved about one half mile west of town as `the village creek.' The boy was forced to gather wood for his own funeral pyre, built in the shade of a large-pecan trove. Then the boy was fastened to the trunk of the tree. A number of men stepped forward and…

Further Mentions: Characters: Mrs. G. O. Otte, Caroline Otte, George Brode, Herman Lehman, Adolf Lehman

Locations: Fredericksburg, Nimitz Hotel, Brady, Mcculloch County

Pioneer Preacher Tells of the James Boys

Two dashing young men filled with good humor and friendliness, never untrue to their neighbor, trust, and two, beautiful horses, trained by their young masters to entertain with unusual tricks the young folks of the little community -- this is the picture painted by the Rev. Jas. A. Hyder, Methodist preacher of Abilene who knew Jesse and Frank James, the notorious Missouri outlaws. This is the contrast to the numerous tales with which schoolboys have for years been entertained in which these brothers were pictured as desperate out laws with never a good quality.

The Abilene minister knew the James boys during their younger days and was the pastor of their mother for a while. He remembers vividly the tricks which the two trained horses of the boys performed for the amusement of the young people who filed out of the little country church after the weekly worship. The Rev. Mr. Hyder also was one of the men to identify the body of Jesse James after he was killed. This is his story.

Further Mentions: Characters: Rev. James A. Hyder, Jesse James, Frank James, Jeff Davis, Robert E. Lee, Sterling Price, George W. Dollis, Dr. Samuels

Locations:: Abilene, Clay County, St. Joseph, Platsburg

The Tragedy of the Perdenales

By Leonard Passmore

There is perhaps, no more touching tragedy to be related of Texas frontier life, than that which occurred the 8th day of August, 1864, at the head of a draw which is one of the sources of the Perdenales River, in Gillespie county, where the town of Harper is now situated. Comanche and Kiowa atrocities were usually of the most savage form in frontier days in this part of Texas, but this account describes what may have been the most brutal of all. Not only because the bloodshed which happened upon the Taylors and Macdonald’s, but the account follows to describe what a tender mother had to endure while in captivity, with the brutality directed at her helpless children and she was forbidden to intervene or help in any way. It is a gripping account of brutality and bloodshed.Further Mentions: Characters: Matthew Taylor, Caroline McDonald, Eli McDonald, Mahaley McDonald, Becky Jane McDonald, Jim Taylor, Zed Taylor, James Taylor Jr., Alice Taylor, Dorcas Taylor, Clementine Hays, Billy Hudson, Pete Hazelwood, Monroe Heron, Charlie Nabors, John West, Locations:: Perdenales River, Gillespie County, Harper, Llano, Wedekin Store, Doss Ranch, Stark Ranch, Squaw Creek, Spring Creek, Little Devil’s River, Mason County, Fort Sill, Threadgill Creek, Kerrville, Banta Branch.

Sam Bass

By Eugene Cunningham

Brief life and ignoble end of the notorious outlaw are here described.Further Mentions: Characters: Charlie Howell, Jack Davis, Sam Bass, Sheriff Everhart, Jim Berry, Henry Underwood, Arkansas Johnson, Sebe Barnes, Jim Murphy, Frank Jackson, Pipes Herndon, John B. Jones, Captain June Peak, Dick Ware

Locations: Santone, Buffalo Sage, Denton County, Dallas County, Tarrant County, Eagle Ford, Salt Creek, Wise County, Tyler, Terrell, Waco, Austin, Round Rock, Williamson County, San Saba, Copprel’s Store

Indianola’s Church Bell

By Rev. M. A. Dunn, Bertram, Texas

Melindy Harris the sole survivor of the Methodist Church in Indianola came into possession of the old bell that survived the storms of Indianola, both of 1875 and 1886.Further Mentions: Characters: Melindy Harris.

Locations: Indianola, Victoria, Port Lavaca

Jack Hays, The Intrepid Texas Ranger

By Col. Hays and Maj. John Caperton

Continued from previous issue...

Further Mentions: Characters: Jack Hays, Santa Anna, General Woll, John C. Hays, General Scott, John W. Geary, Daniel Aldrich, Vincente Peralta, Horace W. Carpenter, Samuel J. Tilden, J. West Martin, Sam Walker, Ben McCullough, Joseph Eastland, John Nugent, Major Caperton, John W. Geary, Andy Sublette, J. J. Bryant, John Freanor, Jim Freanor, Richard P. Hammond

Locations: Rio Grande, San Antonio, Uvalde, Guadalupe River, Medina River, Salado, Monterey, Oakland, Temescal, Berkeley, Lake Merritt, Oak Grove, San Antonio Creek, Little Cedar Creek, Wilson County, Gila River, Alcalde, Alameda County.

Kimble County In 1867

By J. H. Faubion, Leander, Texas

Author J. H. Faubion sketches occurrences of an early date (1867), in Kimble County. He relates specifically, events occuring around the region of a ranch owned by Dr. John McSween on Comanche Creek, a few miles south-east of Fort Mason. At this time, the ranch was then under control of Mr. Adam Keller, who at that time was sheriff of Mason County. He, along with a Mr. Nixon of Kimble county also had some of Dr. McSween's cattle on his Kimble county ranch, which was about four miles west of the junction of North and South Llano rivers.Further Mentions: Characters: Dr. John McSween, Mr. Nixon, Mr. Johnson

Locations: Kimble County, Brazos River, San Antonio, Llano River, Bear Creek, Junction

The City Of Kent

By Mrs. J. S. Moss, Austin, Texas

In 1850, The English Universal Immigration Co. bargained for a body of land of 27,000 acres in what is now known as Bosque County, then Milam County. In the latter part of 1850 or 1851, they sent out about thirty families of immigrants and landed them at Galveston. Sir Edward Belcher and Sir C. F. McKenzie of the British Navy came out with these families. Captain Pidcoke and his family were in this colony also. Captain Pidcoke had a lovely daughter, and on this voyage an Episcopal clergyman performed the ceremony that made her the wife of Captain McKenzie.

Richard 13. Kimball of 49 Wall Street, New York, sold the English this tract of land which had a frontage on the Brazos river of thirty miles, including the noted Kimball's Bend. That was what old Texans called a rainy winter and in pioneer days that phrase had a meaning all its own. The colonists had a fearful journey overland, after they left their boat, as they were traveling in ox-wagons. So miserable was the experience that several members abandoned the company and accepted positions in Brenham, Cameron, Waco, and other towns along the way. Only those of the greatest pluck and hardihood and a love of adventure made their way to the new home, about fifty miles above Waco, which was their nearest trading post. A feeling of safety came over them when they discovered that ten miles from their destination was one store and a fort, consisting of two companies under Major Arnold and Dr. Steiner. The lonely wayfarers made their first settlement at a large spring 11 1/2 miles below what is now the town of Kimball. Here they laid off in proper form the City of Kent, TX.

Further Mentions: Characters: Mrs. James C. Frazier, Sir Edward Belcher, Sir C. F. McKenzie, Captain Pidcoke, Richard B. Kimball, George B. Erath, Neil McLennan, Jacob Decordova, John Bull

Locations: Kopperl, Bosque County, Milam County, Brazos River, Kimball’s Bend, Brenham, Cameron, Waco, Kent, Fort Belknap, Fort Graham, Hill County, Frazier Ranch

The Beautiful Grey Horse Of The Plains

By Curley Hatcher

I have had some inquiries about a wild horse which used to range along the Kansas and Colorado line, so I will tell the readers of Frontier Times what I know of this beautiful animal. I was catching wild horses in that section of country in 1868, and I saw this horse very often. He was never seen with other mustangs, but was always alone. When I first saw him he was a beautiful gray, with long mane and tail, and I often ran him to try to rope him. I always rode the best and fastest horses I could get, but I never rode one which could make this splendid wild horse break a pace. He kept drifting south, through No Man's Land and New Mexico, and the last time I saw him was when I was carrying some dispatches from Coleman county to Company At Menard in 1874, I came upon him about twenty miles east of Menard, and immediately recognized him as the same horse I had so vainly tried to catch five or six years before, although he was almost white. I took after him and ran him for quite awhile, but, as usual, he out-distanced me, and not having time to tarry long, as the dispatches had to be delivered, I resolved to return and make another attempt to catch him. This is the story. Includes old photo of the author

Further Mentions: Characters: Curley Hatcher, Texas Ranger.

Locations: Coleman County, Menard, Fort Mason, Paint Rock.

Captain Lucy Explodes The Ben Thompson Myths

By Hugh Nugent Fitzgerald (Includes a photo of Ben Thompson)

Truth is stranger than fiction. Tradition for the most part is a musty old liar. A thousand writers have written stories of the noted Ben Thompson and his encounter in the long ago with Captain James E. Lucy. A thousand newspapers have published these stories. No two stories were alike. - They were not based on facts. They were more than 75 per cent imagination with a garnishment of tradition. Indeed the real story has never appeared in the press of Texas or the newspapers or magazines of America. Ben Thompson was shot to death long ago. Those who were eyewitnesses to the famous run-in are sleeping their last sleep, with one exception, and that exception is Captain James E. Lucy, the hero of a thousand tales. He is in the land of the living. He has been on a bed of pain for months. Now for the first time he has given the story, with its details, just as it happened. He was not a peace officer when the encounter occurred. Ben Thompson was not a peace officer. Ben Thompson was the proprietor of a gambling house on the avenue in the capital city. Captain Lucy was engaged in private business, which called him to Mexico and elsewhere. From the hour that the melee took place until a very recent date Captain Lucy ignored all the tales that were written and all the fantastic descriptions that have appeared in the newspapers of Texas and elsewhere throughout the years.

Further Mentions: Characters: Ben Thompson, James A. Lucy, Captain Lee Hall, James A. Hamilton, Frank Maddox, William Greene Sterett, William Henry Crane

Locations: Simon’s Café, Travis Club.

The Great Steamboat Race

The Race Between The Robert E. Lee And The Natchez…Further Mentions: Characters: Henry Clay Warmoth, John W. Cannon.

Locations: New Orleans, St. Louis, Vicksburg, Canal Street Wharf.

Reported Killed In Bass Canyon Attack

Account of the strange incident of the killing of a man named Grant by Indians in Bass Canyon in 1880.Further Mentions: Characters: Morve L. Weaver, Judge O. W. Williams, G. F. Grant, General McKenzie

Locations: Fort Stockton, Bass Canyon, Tulia Creek, Tule Canyon, Battle Creek, Van Horn’s Wells.

Bob Glassock Tells Of Cow-Punching Days

By Cora Melton Cross

Account of Glassock’s days as a Panhandle cowpuncher.Further Mentions: Characters: Bob Glassock, Bill Hitson, Ed Watson, Bill Nolan, Jim Washburn, Lee Scott, Tom Coffey, Logan Coffey, Jim Sherley, Cap Lovett, Tass Crouson, George Gray, Ormond Broome, Seymour Broome, Big Frank Stephens, Joe Weaver, Jack Pennell, Uncle Van Gardenhire

Locations: Travis County, Stephens County, Anvil Ranch, Dodson’s Prairie, Crockett County, Panhandle City, Reynold’s Ranch, Throckmorton County, Fort Sill, La Casa, Chisholm Trail, Canadian River, Turkey Track Ranch, Adobe Walls, the "N-Bar-N"

The Truth About Wild Bill

By Herbert Cody Blake

In this account, Blake offers the following historical data as proof that Hickok was not the expert with a 44. he is credited with being.Further Mentions: Characters: Wild Bill Hickok, Buffalo Bill Cody, Custer, Bat Masterson, California Joe, Sitting Bull, John Wesley Hardin, Jack Mellish, Jesse James, Johnny Owens, Luther H. North, Frank North, Bill Harvey, John Talbot, Bill Burke, John Hancock, Bill Burroughs, Robert Johnson, Maj. Frank North, Capt. Luther North, Lieut. Bill Harvey of the Pawnee Scouts, and "Little Buckshot" Wentworth.

Locations: Fort McPherson, North Platte.

Frontier Feudists Were True To Friends

TEXAS bad men who became so famous throughout the nation for their gun plays were at heart the best men and were thrown into feuds because of surrounding conditions, according to V. O. Weed, longtime resident of Austin during frontier times.

Mr. Weed, was the intimate confidant of many Texas pioneers who gained renown for their fends.

"They were the best of fellows," Mr. Weed said. "Those men, and I've known lots of them, would stand by their friends through thick and thin, and they were not bad men at all. They were forced into using guns by accident or by conditions. They started feuds because they had to and not because they liked fighting."

Mr. Weed, as he explained, was speaking of the men who were known as feudists and not of the desperadoes who were bad men for commercial reasons.

Further Mentions: Characters: V. O. Weed, Ben Thompson.

Locations: Austin, Pecan Street, Driskill Hotel, Fifth Street, Colorado Street, Brazos Street.

Some names mentioned in this volume:

Kit Ackland; "Yank" Adams; Capt Daniel Aldrich; Aldrich; Maj Arnold; G. B. Bahn; Sebe Barnes; Lombardy Bart; Edward Sir Belcher; Belcher; White Chief Belden; James Bell; Sam C. Mayor; Jim Berry; Herbert Cody Blake; John Blocker; John G. Bohlen; Joe Box; Jim Bridger; Arthur Brisbane; George Brode; Ormand Broome; Seymour Broome; Ogden Jr Brower; Col Bryant; J. J. Bryant; Bill Burke; Bill Burroughs; Julius Caesar; Susan Calvert; Capt John W. Cannon; Maj John Caperton; G. H. Care; Horace W. Carpenter; Nora Carpenter; Carson; Bill Cody; Bill (Buffalo Bill) Cody; Logan Coffey; Tom Coffey; lt; Col Co; Dr Cook; William Henry Crane; Cora Melton Cross; Tass Crouson; Eugene Cunningham; Jack Davis; Jeff Davis; Dale Dean; Jacob DeCordova; DeCordova; Capt F. J. Dodge; George W. Dollis; Rev M. A. Dunn; Joseph Eastland; Maj Eastland; Maj George B. Erath; Gen George S. Evans; Sheriff Evenhart; J. H. Faubion; Hugh Nugent Fitzgerald; Henry Ford; James C. Frazier; Jim Freanor; Col Geary; John W. Geary; Col John W. Geary; Geary; John H. M. D. Gihon; Capt James B. Gillett; Bob Glasscock; Goodnight; F. G. Grant; Gen Ulysses Grant; George Gray; Horace Greeley; Lee Hall; Capt Lee Hall; James A. Hamilton; J. H. Hammond; John Hays; Maj Richard P. Hays; John Hancock; Nat Harbert; Hardin; Frank Harper; Melindy Harris; Lt Bill Harvey; Curley Hatcher; Anna McMullin Hays; Betty Hays; Clementine Hays; Harry Hays; Col J. C. Hays; Col Jack Hays; John Hays; John C. Hays; Col John C. Hays; John Coffee Hays; Mrs Susan Calvert Hays; Mrs Caroline Hazelwood; Pete Hazelwood; Pipes Herndon; Mrs Becky Jane Heron; Monroe Heron; "Wild Bill" Hickok; Gen Hitchcock; Bill Hitson; Houston; ; Charlie Howell; Billy Hudson; Mrs Clementine Hays; Claude Hudspeth; Theresa Humbert; Rev James A. Hyder; Bill Irvin; Arkansas Jackson; Frank James; Jesse James; Robert James; V. L. James; Arkansas Johnson; Robert ("Baldy"); Gen Jones; John B. Jones; Alwilda Joy; Mrs Wiley Joy; Adam Keller; R. B. Kimball; Richard B. Kimball; Capt Leathers; Robert E. Lee; Adolf Lehman; Herman Lehman; Lincoln; Cov Longley; Cap Lovett; Samuel Luckie; Capt Lucy; Capt James E. Lucy; John Lyle; Frank Maddox; Prof Marsh; J. West Mayor Martin; Bat Masterson; Ben McCullough; Allen McDonald; Alwilda McDonald; Mrs Alwilda Joy McDonald; Becky Jane McDonald; Caroline McDonald; Mrs Caroline McDonald; Mrs Caroline. McDonald; Mrs Caroline Taylor McDonald; Eli McDonald; Lafe McDonald; Mahaley McDonald; Mrs Mahaley McDonald; Monroe McDonald; John Gov McDougal; Robert McKensie; C. F. Sir McKenzie; Capt McKenzie; Neil McLennan; Anna McMullin; Mrs Betty Hays McMullin; Eliza Morgan McMullin; Mrs Eliza Morgan McMullin; Harmon Hays McMullin; John McMullin; Dr John McSween; A. Meadows; Jack Mellish; Eliza Morgan; Mrs J. S. Moss; Jim Murphy; Charles Nabors; James Nisbet; Bill Nolan; Mrs B. H. Norris; Betty Hays; Capt North; Capt Luther H.; John Nugent; Mrs G. O. Otte; Johnny Owens; Passmore; Capt June Peak; Jack Pennell; Antonio Peralta; Louis Peralta; Vicente Peralta; Capt Pidcoke; Gen Pierce; Mrs W. M. Pingleton; Mrs Caroline Pope; Jesse Presnall; Sterling Price; Mrs Dorcas Rayner; Lt N. O. Reynolds; Will Rogers; Gov Ross; Mrs R. R. Ross; John M. Saathoff; Dr Samuels; Santa Anna; George Saunders; Joe Sheeley; Jim Sherley; Frank Soule; Dr Steiner; Frank Stephens; Col Sterett; William Greene Col; Andy Sublette; John Talbot; Alice Taylor; Caroline Taylor; Dorcas Taylor; Gill Taylor; Hannah Taylor; Mrs Hannah Taylor; James Jr Taylor; ; Jim Taylor; Jimmie Taylor; Matthew Taylor; Monroe Taylor; Zed Taylor; Samuel J. Tilden; Col J. Townes; Col Towns; Mark Twain; Underwood; (Colorado Charlie) Utter; Capt Sam Walker; Samuel Walker; Dick Ware; R. C. Ware; Henry Clay Warmoth; Jim Washburn; Ed Watson; Joe Weaver; Morve L. Weaver; V. O. Weed; "Little Buckshot" Wentworth; John West; Marcus Whitman; Samuel Whittaber; O. W. Judge Williams; Mark Withers; Frost Woodhull.

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