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Vol 06 No. 06 - March 1929

Big-Foot Wallace (On the cover)

No frontiersman ever lived in Texas who became so well known as William Alexander Anderson Wallace, better known as "BigFoot Wallace." He was born in Lexington, Virginia, April 3, 1817, and came to Texas shortly after the Battle of San Jacinto won for Texas her independence from Mexico. From time to time this magazine has published sketches of this noted frontiersman, but this sketch is a record of some of his thrilling experiences, as related by himself, in his own words and in "Big-Foot's" characteristic style. Wallace was both a hero-frontiersman, and a true Texas “character”. His style of writing is very engaging – you will not be able to put it down.

Further Mentions: “…when I was in charge of the mail coach, running from San Antonio to El Paso, I got into one I thought I should never squeeze out…”* General Scott * General Johnston * the watering place on Devil's river * "If there had been nothing else, the appearance of, the country around our encampment was enough to make one uneasy, for it had a real 'Inginy look'-broken, rocky hills, covered here and there with clumps of thorny shrubs and stunted cedars * "One night, when Ben and I were on a spying expedition in one of the Waco villages * "I listened attentively, and sure enough I could hear the sound of horses' feet clattering on the rocky ground, and the next minute we saw twenty-three Comanche warriors coming as fast as their horses could bring them right for our camp.* Ben Wade * "Now score 'em, boys," says I, and we let them have it. Four fell dead at the crack of our guns, and the fifth scrambled back into the chaparral as fast as if he had had a heavy bet on doing it inside of a second. I told the boys to load up again as quick as possible, for that more of them would be sure to come to take off the dead ones; but I made a miscalculation this time for a certainty. Not a thing could be seen or heard for fifteen or twenty minutes, when all at once we saw an arm rise up out of the bushes, on the edge of the chaparral, and make a sort of motion, and next instant one of the dead Indians was snaked into the thicket; and I wish I may be kicked to death by grasshoppers, if they didn't rope every one of them and drag 'em off in that way, and we could never see a thing except that Indian's arm, motioning backward and forward as he threw the lasso. * "While the boys were harnessing up, I took my rifle and stepped out a short distance to reconnoitre, and well for us that I did, for on reaching the top of the little rise where I had first taken my stand. I saw. and counted forty warriors coming down a canyon not more than four hundred yards off. I was satisfied it was not the same party we had been fighting, but a reinforcement coming to their assistance. They rode slowly along directly toward me, and when within about one hundred yards of me, I rose up from where I was sitting and showed myself to them. They halted instantly, and one of them, who I supposed was the chief, rode thirty or forty yards in advance of the rest, and in a loud voice asked me in Mexican (which most of the Comanches speak) what we were doing there. There is nothing like keeping a stiff upper lip and showing a bold front, when you have to do with Indians; so I told him we had been fighting Comanches, and that we had flogged them genteelly, too. * California Springs *


Another pioneer has passed to his reward. Editor W. E. Gilliland, of the Baird, Texas, Star, died in that city early in January. Mr. Gilliland went out on the frontier in the early days, and "grew up with the country." He was first a cowboy, and later took up newspaper work. He established the Baird Star more than forty years ago, and was its editor up to the day of his death. "State Press," in the Dallas News, has this to say of our departed friend…

When Billy The Kid Was Brought To Trial

Helen Irwin

George R. Bowman, in 1877 when a young man of 25, joined his father, for a stage coach trip from El Moro, Colo, where the railroad ended, to La Mesilla. The country was infested with two inimical tribes of Indians, the Mescalero Apaches and the Jicarilla Apaches, and, more dangerous than these, marauding bands of white bandits. Among the latter, the most notorious was the youthful Billy the Kid. One of the most thrilling episodes of Bowman's career was acting as clerk of court when this 21-year-old bandit was on trial for his life. It was in 1881 that Billy the Kid, whose real name was William Bonney, joined one of the factions in the cattle war then raging. Already he had to his credit a man killed for every year of his life, and he now proceeded to add a few more notches to his rifle. One of these notches was the killing of the sheriff of Lincoln County and after the cattle war was terminated Billy was brought to trial for this assassination. This is the story.

Further Mentions: General Lew Wallace * Mrs. Bowman * Dona Anna County * Lincoln County * Bowman describes the drama of the moment when the jury filed back into the room to render their decision. It had not taken long. Silent, contemptuous, Billy the Kid stood before the judge and heard his sentence-"to be hanged by the neck until you are dead." * Pat Garrett * Las Cruces to El Moro * Jimmie McDaniels * Tularosa * Mr. Herron *


James W. Stell, of Cedaredge, Colorado, writes about his experience on the buffalo range as follows:

"I have been intending to write to you for quite awhile. Have been reading about old Fort Griffin in your magazine. I drove stage out of there in the spring of 1877 to a buffalo town called Reynolds, north and west of Fort Griffin. I drove for Lee Reynolds and Rath, and carried the mail and express in April, May and June, two or three times a week, without change of stock. Fort Griffin was sure a lively town then, as all of the buffalo hides from west and north to Red river came through there to Fort Worth, 150 miles away. There were two dance halls, and I don't know how many saloons. A man by the name of McCamie was the hide buyer there. He also ran a store up on the Wichita river. Two Irishmen by the name of Quinn ran a store on the old McKenzie Trail, about twenty-five miles east of the Double Mountains. Lee Reynolds and Mr. Rath done most of the hide buying in that country as far north as Dodge City, Kansas. I was engaged in buffalo hunting from 1874 up to 1879. Was in the Yellow House Canyon fight, on the head of the Double Mountain Fork of the Brazos, near where the town of Lubbock now stands. That fight took place on March 15, 1877. There were forty-five volunteer Rangers; we organized at Reynolds, Texas. The battle was fought at the foot of the Yellow House, and there were about fifty Comanches and 150 Apaches from New Mexico in the fight. We killed thirty-six Indians, and secured a great many horses. One of our men, Joe Jackson, who lived near Waco, was...


All old settlers of Central and West Texas mourn the passing of Uncle Ken Elkins, who died recently at his home in Kent county, Texas. He was one of the outstanding characters of the frontier, and lived to the ripe old age of 96 years, having been born in Illinois, in September, 1832. He moved with his parents to Texas and settled in Parker county …


Mentions: Dr. L. W. Payne, Jr., of the University of Texas * Mr. D. H. D. White * the stone buildings in Bandera, the Huffmeyer store, Carmichael store, Schmidtke residence * Buck Hamilton, who was sheriff of that county * Henry White * Judge Howell Johnson, of Fort Stockton * Captain W. L. Wright and C. I. Miller * Sheriff W. P. Rooney * Benjamin Franklin Gholson. * Col. George W. Saunders * Mr. Earle R. Forrest * E. D. Harrington, Pontano, Arizona

Luke Short

By T. U. Taylor

Luke Short (Includes old B&W photo image) was one of the characters of the West and a man of peculiar characteristics. Small in size, quiet and unobtrusive in manner, with nerves of steel, mild-mannered, he was true to his friends and asked no quarter from his enemies. The name Luke Short appears in all the histories of two towns of the West, Dodge. City, Kansas, in its wildest days, and Tombstone, Arizona, but little else is known about him short of certain rather doubtful and fanciful tales. He was a friend of Wyatt Earp, Bat Masterson and Doc Holliday, and did have a gunfight with the legendary Jim Courtright. This story seeks to shed more light on the mysterious figure of Luke Short.

Further Mentions: * the White Elephant * Judge Stedman and the late Wm. Capps, of Fort Worth * Charley Bull, Courtright's partner in the detective business * Bull and Jake Johnson * Mr. Harris, who is vice-president of the Dodge City bank, and Mr. Webster *


Just before going to press with this issue we received the news of the death of Mrs. Mary Ellen Sands, pioneer lady of Mason, Texas, at the age of seventy-two years. Mrs. Sands was born in Murcer county, Missouri, Nov. 3, 1856, and died at Mason January 26, 1929. She came to Texas when she was 11 years old, and was married to W. D. Sands on June 1, 1873. Mr. Sands died thirty-six years ago. Four children survive, being Will B. Sands of La Union, New Mexico; Mrs. J. S. King, Mrs. C. A. Barnhart and Walter Sands of Mason, Texas. Mrs. Sands was one of the gentlest of mothers, a true Christian, devoted to her family and her friends, and her passing is mourned by all who knew her and loved her.

W. A. Roberts, A Pioneer

By J. Marvin Hunter.

WA. Roberts, (Includes old B&W photo image) pioneer cattleman of Frio Town, Frio county, was born January 16, 1869, in Montgomery county, Texas, and with his parents, moved to Frio county in 1879. When he was thirteen years old he entered the employ of the late Captain B. L. Crouch, one of the big cattlemen of Southwest Texas, and became a cowman himself, following the business for more than fifty years. He made several trips up the trail, going as far as Nebraska on one occasion. Other trips carried him into New Mexico. In 1884 he drove a bunch of horses from Seven Rivers, New Mexico, to Marfa, Texas, shipped them to Uvalde, and from there drove them across the country to the Crouch ranch in Frio county, west of Pearsall. The last trail trip made by Mr. Roberts was in 1885, when he went with a herd of Crouch & Crawford cattle to the Chickasaw Nation. At various times in his career Mr. Roberts had brushes with Indians and outlaws. He was credited with having outwitted a big gang of cattle thieves when he was a young foreman for Captain Crouch and other notable exploits. This is his story.

A Vast Frontier Was Guarded By Fort Concho

Robbie M. Powers.

Fort Concho, pride of the army in the days of the earliest settlements, guarded the wide gateway that opened upon the old frontier. This is a very detailed account of the origin, development and early history both of the fort itself and of the city of San Angelo.

Further Mentions: expeditions made by Corondo and Cabeza de Vaca * after the California gold rush in 1849, the United States Government appointed one Captain Marcy, to lay out a southern route through Texas to the Pacific coast * This line was called the Butterfield Overland * Col. Robert E.. Lee * Fort Chadbourne * John Brown's raid, Major Thomas of Fort Chadbourne * The Chisholm Ranch was established in 1862 * Tankersley in '64 * . W. DeLong located at Lipan Springs * a sort of drawn battle had been fought between soldiers and Kickapoos at Dove Creek * Pegleg Station near Menardville * Dr. W. M. Notson * Quail and the prairie chicken scurried thru the mesquite grass, and the rivers were alive with finny revelers-buffalo fish, bass and catfish, many of the last named tipped the scales at 75 pounds. The new country was not without interesting diversions for soldier off duty * Dr. Samuel Smith * Mescallero Apaches * Ben Ficklin * Bart DeWitt * his (DeWitt's) sisterin-law, Angelina, a nun in Ursuline Convent at San Antonio * "The Fighting Restaurant," * Scot, W. R. Whytock * the new Olympic Theater * Henry Wambold * Sheriff Spears * Many peculiar types of people frequented the frontier saloons. There were "Taka de Cake," a darkbrowned son of Italy, a gambler,. who spoke several tongues; "Hurricane Minnie" who blew in from somewhere; "Cap-Hop Kid" and "Rocky Rivers," card sharks who could always answer present if the bartender called the roll; "Casino Mack," the nimblefingered, and wide-awake "Midnight Molly" composed a group which seemed unwilling to leave San Angelo until… * Ballinger * Beau Brummel * Rufe Burris * the case of John Gray * Colonel Grierson * a white man named McCarty * the Nimitz Hotel *


C. W. Grandy, Brownwood, Texas.

Ranger W. B. Anglin was the last man killed by the Indians in Central West Texas in 1876. He was a brave Indian fighter and noble frontiersman. He joined Captain Maltby's Company E, Frontier Battalion, in June, 1875, Major John B. Jones commanding. Here is a brief story of the good man’s life.

Further Mentions: Captain June Peak * ExRanger John Banister * F. Dobie * Brownwood * Anglin's Lake * Midland * Salt Gap, in the Brady Mountains * the grand old Buffalo Gap range, Mt. Pass, Cedar Gap, Double Mountain Fork of the Brazos. * the Clear Fork of the Brazos in August covered with buffalo cows and calves * Shorty Brown at Fort Chadbourne *

Brief History Of The Early Days In Mason County

By J. Marvin Hunter. (Fifth installment – continued from last month)

[SELLER’S NOTE: Actually, Mr. Hunter should have titled this series of stories “A detailed and extensive account of the Early Days in Mason County.” This great series (5 installments) includes some of the most painstaking historical research to be found anywhere, and it all pertains to the life of Mason County and its early history, settlements, frontiersmen, family movements, development, Indian raids, political, social, economic development, etc, etc. As well as including the most minute detail, this series also includes many, many old B&W photo images of NUMEROUS early settlers of Mason County. Truly Mr. Hunter has done an inestimable service to those interested in Mason County, Texas history and genealogy.

Suffice it to say, if you live in Mason County, Texas, or have ancestors there, or just have genealogical or historical interest in the area, YOU WILL FIND NO RESOURCE BETTER THAN THIS GREAT SERIES.]

In the year 1849, under the administration of President Taylor, the government, with the view of encouraging the settling of the southwestern border in Texas, established a line of forts from the Red River to the mouth of the Rio Grande at a distance of forty or fifty miles apart.

An expedition in the charge of Captain Mason was sent out to choose locations for these posts. He recognized the natural advantages of a hill just south of the present town of Mason and marked it for a fort, which was called Fort Mason in his honor. The land upon which the fort was built was purchased in a hundred and sixty acre tract from Mr. Hick, the father-inlaw of another Mason resident, Mr. Jacob Schuessler.

The next year, 1850, Major Merril and four companies of soldiers began working on the much desired fort, but it was not completed for two long years. From the time of the arrival of the contingent under Major Merril until the outbreak of the Civil War, the fort was constantly garrisoned by from two to eight companies of soldiers, depending. upon the ever-changing hostility of the savage hordes about it. Before the soldiers came into this frontier country, no known white man had visited it. The Kiowa, Apache, and Comanche Indians, and the buffalo, antelope, and deer had been the only inhabitants. The tribes resented the_ intrusion of the white-men and very soon they took the war-path against them. Their natural ferocity, strengthened by an intense hatred of their new enemy, kept all but the most daring away; even the most zealous and fearless frontiersmen kept at a distance. The nearest settlement to Fort Mason was Ferdericksburg, where the Fisher & Miller Emigration Company founded a colonly of German emigrants, who had left their crowded Fatherland for a more properous life in America. Many of these emigrants were revolutionists who were forced to leave Germany because of their apparently radical views. Their descendants fought "Kaiserism and Kulture" during the World War and were among the best soldiers our country posessed in the Civil War. One soldier, of whom all Texans are proud. Louis Jordan, was the first Texas officer to fall in action in France and was among the first eighty picked men to be sent from Texas to the front lines.

To each settlement in this southwestern borderland the State of Texas gave a grant of six hundred and forty acres, and well did they deserve it, for the dangers, privations- and hardships these poor settlers endured were almost inconceivable. Some died of starvation, others were slaughtered by the Indians, and a great many died of disease produced by lack of nourishment and other terrible privations. To some fourteen or fifteen families an assignment of land was made in the southern portion of Mason county, then under the jurisdiction of Gillespie county, but these people were compelled to wait until the soldiers had arrived before they could take posession. In 1855 and 1856 the Kothmanns, Leifesters, Jordans, Lemburgs, Simons, Kneeses, Hasses, Beherns, Ellebrachts, and others, whose descendants are filling Mason County today, comprised the small band of settlers in that untamed land. They faced their uncertain future bravely and tried to live as normally as possible, erecting homes and producing what foods they could in their new environment. Henry Hoerster, now a cattleman and one of the most prominent citizens of Mason, Texas, claims to be the first white child born in Mason County. The hardships and discouragements which awaited them were many for, in spite of the vigilance of the soldiers, the Indians would destroy the fruits of many day's toil in a twinkling and sweep away to safety with bands of stolen horses and cattle. Above all, their lives were in constant danger. Nevertheless, they were determined to found permanent homes for themselves and their posterity. They trusted in God, being devout Christian men and women. As soon as they became settled they created an altar to their God. It consisted not in an ordinary church as we have today-building materials were too scarce for a real church to be had; so each family made a little altar in their log cabin and each cabin served as a church. The meetings were held in a cycle, and the entire populace attended them. At the conclusion of each meeting the good folk remained and ate dinner with the host…

And so begins this excellent historical account of the rich history of Mason county. (The preceding introductory excerpt is from the first installment, found in the November, 1928 volume, which is available from us here at oldventures – just request)

This installment mentions Whitmill Holland * Dave Garner, who was at the time engaged in the grocery business * Lemburg's store * Booneville, Arkansas * J. G. Adcock * Mr. Adcock's family was composed of himself and wife, two sons, Andrew and Marcos, and two daughters, Ethel and Lois. * Mr. R. Grosse (Includes old B&W photo image) * John Lemburg, Sr., was another pioneer citizen of Mason * Charles Lemburg of California; Ernest J. Lemburg, John Lemburg, Jr., Mrs. Ed Lemburg of Austin, Will Lemburg of McAllen, Jim and Arthur Lemburg of Dallas; and daughters, Theresa, Carrie, Nellie, Nina and Sophie * Wm. Sands * Dan Bickenbach * William Dodd, who was engaged in the drug business * W. N. Morrow, also a druggist * the Mason news of August 13, 1887 * Will Dodd * Frank Badger * Mr. Williamson * Mason County War * Major Hunter's hotel * Sheriff John Clark * the two Baccus brothers * a man named Wiggins * a man named Turley * Judge Everett * a man named William Coke * Mr. Coke was foreman of a cattle ranch-near Mason * Mr. Miller * Daniel Hoerster, a prominent man, * Peter Jordan * George Gladden * Keller's store about twelve miles south of Mason * Mose Beard * Beaver Creek * Loyal Valley * John Worley * Scott Cooley * John Ringo * Captain J. B. Gillett * Major Jones * Captain Ira Long * ten boys of Company D * Cooley's gang * Tim Williamson * John Ringgold *


Mentions: The newest weekly newspaper in the Hill Country is the Leakey Leader * Emmett T. Hensley * Mrs. Hensley * Junction City Clipper * Harper Herald *

The Old "Double File" Trail

By W. K. Makemson.

Much historical detail is here devoted to the exact route of the old "Double File Trail". It was called that because in travelling they rode in two files or by twos, hence made two trails or paths country and its exact location is traced out in this story. The trail dates back to perhaps 1828 or 1829 from it’s point of origin in East Texas and extending to some point in the Rio Grande, perhaps Laredo. The "Trail" crossed the Brazos river at the Falls; Little River below the "Three Forks" and the Colorado at or near the place where Webberville was afterwards located.

Further Mentions: Round Rock "Tap" * Jem Shaw, a Deleware Indian * Chandler's Branch * Mr. Wm. M. Stinnett * Dr. Thomas J. Kenney * Brushy Creek * known as the "Cove," * Mrs. Mary Jane Lee, of El Paso, Texas * Clarisa * Castleberry and Courtney, were killed by the Indians at Bone Hollow on the waters of the Salado, about five or six miles north of where Corn Hill is now situated * Hon. Joseph Lee, who it is said was the first lawyer to locate at Austin * Kenney's Fort was situated on the south bank of Brushy Creek and about 250 yards below the point where the Katy railroad bridge crosses the creek * Capt. Shapley Ross, father of the late ex Gov. Sul Ross * John C. Compton * Perry Neal and Tom Roberts * Mr. A. C. Beaver * Col. W. C. Dalrymple * the Town's Mill dam * Bryant's Station, crossing Possum Creek where the Dick Robbins place is now situated * General McLeod's camp * Capt. Nelson Merrelle * the Little River Crossing * George W. Kendall * President Mirabeau B. Lamar * Gen. McLeods camp, * Major Bird * Kendalls * O'Possum Creek * Deep Creek * Donnohoe's Creek * Elias Queen * John Graham, the great uncle of our fellowtownsman, D. L. Graham * the "Watkins Crossing.", * the old Freeman Smalley grave yard * "Bony" Ferguson * M. Jester * Chandler's Branch * Frank Smalley * Merrill's field * Thomas Thaxton * Mesquite Flat * Henry Tisdale * J. J. Johnson * Wm. Palm's house * Mankin's branch * the LaRue place * Richard Sanson * Capt. N. M. Merrille * Mrs. John Palm * Joseph Barnhart * Capt. Ladd * Davis Chandler * the Watkin's place * the Hutto and Round Rock road *

Tells Of Red Rovers Who Came To Texas

Account of the military unit composed of Alabamans who came to the rescue of Texas at the time of the desperate situation at the Alamo. All the men of the unit were brutally slaughtered at Goliad, except three who feigned death on the firing squad and then proceeded on a daring escape back home.

"But long before he reached home, Dr. Shackelford and the other two men, the war being over, had come back. I recall so vividly the day the Doctor reached home, he came on the horse cars from Tuscumbia. The word had gotten out some way that he would be in that day. It seemed to us children that everybody had come to town. All the day before and that night, men, women and children, with their dogs, in wagons, on horse-back and afoot, they came from everywhere, our town was full and they were camped all over the place. As the hour drew near and the people gathered round the depot, or warehouse, as it was then called, a restrained quiet seemed to pervade the atmosphere, men talked together in low tones, even the children, under the restraint of nervous mothers, ceased their playing and hung around with questing wonder written on their little faces. Soon the car, with its straining horses, was seen, and as it came to a stop, there wasn't a sound from any source. It seemed that even the dogs felt the influence of this suppressed something that filled the air. And then Capt. Shackelford appeared and walked into their midst. As he stood, a tall, rugged man, sunburned, thin, grown old in a few short months, with tears running down his checks, and told them the fate of husbands, fathers, sweethearts and brothers, with the women wailing, children crying, and strong men with faces drawn in agony, at the cruel recital, it seemed no scene could possibly be more greatly filled with suffering. No one present will ever forget that scene. Six-year-old child as I was it painted a picture on my mind that my more than four score years has dimmed but little.


Dr. P. H. Chilton, former Texas Ranger of the Old Guard, died at Falfurrias, Texas, January 19, 1929. He belonged to Captain G. W. Arrington's company…

ASA STANFORD, Armstrong and Crane, from Buffalo Gap, Texas, R. C. Stanford, Phoenix, Arizona. Fred S. Millard, Faywood, New Mexico, Raymond W. Thorp

The Strange Tale Of Bosque John

"Bosque John" (Bosque John McLennan) was a white man who was captured by the Keechie tribe and lived with them for 12 years. He hunted with them and fought with them, and even helped them scalp bands of white settlers. McLennan county, one of the richest farming sections of central Texas, is named for his uncle, Neil McLennan. Fragments of stories in old newspapers tell snatches of Bosque John's life. His daughters, Mrs. J. B. Richards, Meridian, Texas, and Mrs. Jim Snyder, Walnut Springs, Texas, have carefully preserved letters and writings of their father. His great granddaughter, Ruth Coffman, cherishes the thrilling stories that have been told to her about his life. This is his story.

One night a band of Comanches, who had been raiding the vicinity of Austin, came to the camp of the Keechies to relate the latest choice bit of gossip. They declared that the white people had houses that could be seen through.

The Keechies immediately held council. No common Comanche could tell them such yarn and live. A scouting party, among whom was Bosque John, was sent out at once to investigate. They arrived in the village of Austin about nine o'clock. Cautiously they slipped into town and crept through the dark streets. Sure enough, just as the Comanches had reported, light was shining through the sides and sometimes through both ends of the houses.

Bosque crept up to a saloon to get a closer view of this strange phenomenon. He peeped in. He saw some of the men drinking at the bar, others playing billiards. He attempted to stick his hands through the opening, only to find a clear, cold barrier, using his arrows, he struck the window with all his might.

There was the sound of splintering glass followed by the yells of those inside as they seized their guns. Bosque, in relating the incident, said he ran three miles without stopping. This was his first experience with windowpanes.

Further Mentions: Squire McLennan * Comanche Peak * Major Erath * To Bosque the white man's civilization was irksome. He longed for the wild, free life of the Indian. Nearest such existence was the life of the Texas Ranger, so Bosque joined Captain S. P. Ross' company and became the interpreter and mediator between the white man and the red. *

When Cortina Raided Texas

Juan Nepomuceno Cortina had fought Indians as a boy and served under Arista at the battles of Palo Alto and Resaca de Palma. He owned a ranch near El Carmen, 9 miles northwest of Brownsville, and had the reputation of being a "bold and turbulent man," although he was uneducated and could barely sign his name. On July 13, 1859, Cortina and some men from his ranch were in Brownsville and while they were there a former servant of his was arrested by the city marshall for creating a disturbance in a cafe. The marshall handled the Mexican roughly; so roughly, in fact, that Cortina resented it and shot the marshall in the shoulder. Then he took the rescued Mexican up behind him on his horse and went to his ranch, accompanied by his followers. Here he stayed until September, and before daylight on the morning of the 28th of that month, Cortina entered the City of Brownsville with about 80 men. The fight that followed left two Mexicans dead, as well as three Americans. His men patrolled the streets, crying "Death to the Americans!" and "Long Live Mexico!" The jailer was killed and all inmates of the jail were released. He was finally persuaded to leave the city by some influential citizens of Matamoras, and retired to his ranch also maintaining an armed band on the Mexican side of the river. Cortina arose to be brigadier general of the Mexican army and the governor of the Mexican state of Tamaulipas, exercising a great influence all up and down the border, and continuing to keep the frontier in a state of disturbance.

Further Mentions: Walden Greenlee * Miller's Hotel * Mercedes Texas * the slaves of Colorado county * Karnes county * the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo * Espiritu Santa Grant * Jose Salvador de la Garza * Maria Josefa Cavazos * Fort Brown * Brownsville * Cavasos * The City of Matamoras * General Pedro Hinojosa * General Carvijal, of "Plan de la Loba" fame * Colonel Robert E. Lee * Major S. P. Heintzlemann * Col. John S. Ford * Tobin's Rangers * stronghold at El Carmen

Dudley Tom

Cora Melton Cross.

Few men who went up the trail to the well-known markets for Texas cattle have a more extensive knowledge of the advantages and disadvantages, responsibilities, hardships, dangers and pleasures at that time, and certainly none remembers nor recites them more clearly than Dudley Tom. Dudley, youngest of the Tom boys, whose father was Capt. William Tom who won his spurs in soldiering under Andrew Jackson and the famous battle of New Orleans found him in the thick of the fight. Dudley went on to be one of the foremost cattlemen of the Runnels and Concho county areas.

Further Mentions: * the Captain's oldest son, John * Alfred Tom, next in line, was also a Texas ranger * Millett and Irvin were big cattlemen, handling about 35,000 head a year * J. 0. Dewees * the 'old Erskine survey * Jess McCoy * the Matador ranch * J. H. Parramore, Judge Hugh Lewis and John Putman. * Colorado City * Runnels City * Tom Horde and Sam Nailling * Coleman City * Davis, Guy & Baker had a general merchandise store * Jim Swift * H. D. Pearce * Bob Barrow * the Runnels City Hotel * Parramore * Elm and Bluff Creeks * Luce Wood * the 'W. F. Bar,' * Van S. Lewis * `H. I. Z.' * '7-H-4', * `A. J. * Jim Johnson * the Deuce of Hearts, O. H. Triangle or O. H. & D * Fuzzy Creek * Bush Stell * Van S. Lewis * Sleicher County * the town of Ballinger * Judge Ballinger * Judge George W. Perryman of Runnels City * Capt. Towner, County Clerk * Fletcher and Webster's livery stable * Judge Guion and A. S. Reed * Richmond P. Hobson of Merrimac fame *


Mentions: Our good friend, Err. J. E. Copenhaver, of Pilot Point, Texas* Mason County * Joe Kyle * Bill Kyle, a brother of Joe Kyle who Zack Light killed, and Gid J. Kyle * Captain Ferg Kyle * the town of Kyle in Hays county * Mr. Adolph Brandl, of Augsburg, Bavaria * Mr. Rudolph Carter, of San Antonio, Texas * Fred L. Napier, a former Texas Ranger of the Old Guard *

The Battle Of Spanish Fort

By M. K. Wyatt

The Texas town of Burlington, now known as Spanish Fort, located in the bend of Red River just south and to the west of Marietta, Oklahoma, in north central Montague County has not always been the quiet, peaceful community that it is today. The town played an interesting part in Oklahoma and Texas border history long after the war between the States, and as late as 1874 the people there lived in constant dread of Indian raids, for the Comanches under Quanah Parker were frequently on the war path and residents of Burlington had not only heard of but had actually seen Indian scouts along the north banks of Red River.

On an evening in May, 1874, a surprise attack caught the people of the town unprepared with firearms and a hand-to-hand fight ensued in which one white man was killed and several others seriously wounded. Then the settlers rallied, rushed for their rifles and put up a stubborn fight, causing the Indians to slowly withdraw. As the Indians fought with musket sabre and lance, in an effort to ward off the deadly rifle fire of the settlers, the fearless old chief of the Comanches stood like a stone wall, cheering on his men. The battle was long and fiercely contested. This is the story.

Further Mentions: Drek Shrock * Shrock's father, John Shrock fought in the battle * "B. Griswold, Company F. Calvary Y. Minnesota Volunteers * Villages of the Taovayas (Towash) Indians, occupied both the north and south banks of Red River below the mouth of the Little Wichita River * Los Almagres, (near Llano, Texas). * Menardville * Captain Parilla * Jack Shelton *

Judge Of A Baby Show

By Joe Sappington

There is not a case on record where any man ever acted as judge at a baby show the second time. It is like having the measles or the mumps, you never have the second attack. I once acted in that capacity unaided and alone and just as soon as I got through with the job I knew that I would never preside over another baby show.

The baby show over which I presided was at the close of our County Fair and out of a crowd of a thousand men I was unanimously chosen to fill the place. However, I was not made the unanimous choice on the spur of the moment-in fact the committee spent at least two hours in a vain effort to find two other idiots to serve with me and would probably have wasted more valuable time if I had not put a stop to their further search. I told the committee that I didn't need any help and to get their babies in shape; that it wouldn't take two minutes to pass on the prettiest baby. I was then elected by acclamation. I was flattered over the fact that the whole thing had been turned over to me and warmly congratulated the committee over their wise selection.

It was 5 o'clock in the afternoon when I was informed that the babies were now ready for me to pass my artistic eye over them and with a glad heart I marched boldly into the tent where they were on display.

I shall never forget the scene that was presented to my gaze when I entered that tent…

How was I going to choose between the babies of the wives of the grocer, the dry goods merchant, and the fellow who held a past due note of $37.50 against me? And then there was Bill Hawkins' wife with her baby dressed in a pink calico dress, contesting for the prize. Bill had killed seven men and I was afraid to decide against his babe for fear I would round out his eighth man. Then the fat baby that was clothed in nothing but air and blue ribbon around its neck while sitting in a wash basin-it could not be ignored for the simple reason that I had courted its mother just two years before, and I was afraid she would avenge the wrong done her first born by informing my wife


S. P. Elkins of Tishomingo, Oklahoma, a Texas Ranger twice, first with Captain Swisher's Company in 1870 and 1871; then in 1874 joined Captain Perry's Company D., tells of the capture of a wild Indian who was then brutally made a public spectacle before the public eye and then was incarcerated where he died.

Further Mentions: Major John B. Jones * Captain Coldwell's company twenty miles west of Kerrville on Bear Creek * Captain Kinney * the old Live Oak Hotel in Dallas * Captain Stephens' company * Cold Spring (Loyal Valley) * Main street, Congress Avenue, to the Capitol *

When A Handful Of Americans Invaded Mexico

This is a brief but excellent account of the sad and ill-fated Mier expedition which, like the Alamo and Goliad, has become a part of the rich heritage of Texas and her bloody but courageous quest for freedom.

Further Mentions: Mier, in the State of Tamaulipas, thirteen miles west of Roma * Virgil Lott * Wm. S. Fisher, Edwin Cameron, Gen. Tom Green * Col. Bennett of Montgomery county * General Canales * Col. Wm. S. Fisher commander of the expedition * Gen. Tom Green * Col. McCollough * Gen. Ampudia * Joe Berry, one of the Texans * , Dr. Sinckerson *

New Highway To Cross Historic Battlefields Of 1846

Story of two of the most interesting battlefields of Texas-the Palo Alto battlefield and the Resaca de la Palma battlefield, both only a few miles out from Brownsville, where the first battle of the Mexican war was fought, in 1846.

Further Mentions: Corpus Christi and Point Isabel, the seige of Fort Brown, the capture of Matamoros, the advance up the Rio Grande to Camargo, and the victory of Gen. Taylor's army at Monterey * the Resaca de la Palma * Gen. Taylor * Maj. Ringgold * Fort Ringgold * Capt. C. F. Smith * Capt. McCall *


Mentions: F. E. McCaleb, Austin, Texas, * Mr. Hughes of Washington * the Rangers who served in Company E in 1877 * Lieutenant B. S. Foster in Company E in 1876 and 1877 * Lieutenant B. S. Foster's Company E, in September, 1876, and reported May 1, 1877: T. M. Whalen, C. R. Griffith, C. Bush, A. H. Arnet, J. H. Bates, J. M. Brann, L. L. Denman, C. L. Epps, W. Goodloe, S. V. Hamilton, D E. Johnson, J. W. McCollum, M. S. Moreland, W. W. Nelson, Wm. Perie, E. S. Seay, E. Scott, H. S. Thomas, J. Wood, R. C. Ware, G. F. Walker, C. H. Young. *

Managing A Trail Herd In The Early Days

By Charles Goodnight.

So much has been said and written about the old trails that anything else may seem superfluous. But in this account, we have the master Texas cattleman himself, Charles Goodnight, who was one of, if not the most forceful figure in the shaping of the early Texas cattle industry. Here are his insights.

Taken all in all my life on the trail was the happiest part of it. I wish I could find words to describe the companionship and loyalty of the men toward each other. It is beyond imagination. The cowboy of the old days is the most misunderstood man on earth. Few people of the younger generation realize that the western men the cowboys-were as brave and chivalrous as it is possible to be. Bullies and tyrants were unknown among them. They kept their places around a herd under all circumstances; and if they had to fight they were always ready. Timid men were not known among them-the life did not fit them. Today-many of the richest and greatest men of Texas were cowboys. Of the hands I employed three are now millionaires. Fewer cowboys have been tried for crimes than any other class of men.

Further Mentions: Young county, Texas, my starting place * Summer, New Mexico * Oliver Loving * On my first drive across the ninety six mile desert that lies between the Pecos and the Concho Rivers I lost three hundred head of cattle * Horsehead Crossing * Mackenzie Trails * the old Chisholm Cattle Trail * Captain R. G. Carter * J. E. Kelley, of Beeville, Texas *

Little Jim Wallace

Harry Williams.

LITTLE" Jim Wallace was killed when he went into Longview, Texas, more than 30 years ago with the Dalton brothers to rob a bank, but time was when "Little" Jim was one of the most courageous of peace officers himself. Once he took six outlaws prisoners, practically all by his "lonesome," three of said men afterward going to the gallows. They were that bad.

They gave Little Jim a violent death there at Longview; plenty of rope, bullets, and things of that sort. Dragged him through the streets, some tell it. If those Longview fellows wanted to create an impression that their town was the wrong place to stage bank robberies, they succeeded. But those. same fellows didn't know of course, that in other days Little Jim had been on the other side.

Further Mentions: Bob Hutchins of Del Rio, special officer in the employ of the Southern Pacific railway * United States Marshal Heck Thomas * old Fort Smith * The Jennings boys, the famous Al, then Frank and Ed * Jack Love or Temple Houston * Bob Dalton * Asa Stanford * Buffalo Gap, Texas * Armstrong and Crane * R. C. Stanford *

The Killing Of The Russells

O. M. Bley.

This is a very sad account of the cowardly slaying of John Russell and his bachelor brother, Abner Russell, March the 20th, 1877 by the bloodthirsty reprobate, Sam Bass, about the most vile piece of human debris to set foot on Texas soil. The groundless slaughter of the men occurred in the Russell’s store in Post Oak, Jack County, Texas.


Mentions: DR. J. E. COPENHAVER, Pilot Point, Texas. J. D. WULFJEN, Colorado, Texas. J. E. KELLEY, Beeville, Texas. J. W. MICKLE, San Antonio, Texas. JUDGE R. C. CRANE, Sweetwater, Texas. A. N. PRINCE, Sweetwater Texas. E. E. TOWNSEND, Alpine, Texas. L. A. CHANSLOR, Killeen, Texas. JACK ANDERSON, Comstock, Texas. R. D. HOLT, Eldorado, Texas. JUDGE W. A. BONNET, Eagle Pass, Texas. CHAS. E. COLLINS, Globe, Arizona. T. U. TAYLOR, Dean of Engineering, University of Texas, Austin, Texas, four subscription renewals two years each. R. E. L. JACKSON, Paris, Texas. ISAAC W. RHODES, Kingfisher, Okla. E. D. HARRINGTON, Pantano, Arizona E. W. SNODDY, Alva, Oklahoma. VERNON MARION, Sonora, Texas. ROBERT MILLIGAN, Eldorado, Texas. IRA McDONALD, Eldorado, Texas. MRS. R. R. RUSSELL, San Antonio, Texas. W. T. LOFTUS, Carbondale, Pa. D. H. D. WHITE, Greenwood, Miss. JOHN L. OSBORN, Corvallis, Oregon. C. D. JOHNSON, Garfield, Utah,. LOUIS SCHORP, Pearsall, Texas. E. A. DRAKE, Corning, California. RAMON F. ADAMS, Dallas, Texas. S. 0. LOYD, Vanderpool, Texas. GEO. W. SAUNDERS, San Antonio, Texas. EARLE R. FORREST, Washington, Penn. HINTON W. CALDWELL, Dallas, Tex. A. L. SMALZRIED, Dallas, Texas. FELIX MILLER, Tularosa, New Mexico C. M. GRADY, Brownwood, Texas. W. L. VAWTER, Loesch, Montana. B. MARKWORDT, Harper, Texas. E. H. EANES, Georgetown, Texas. S. C. BUTLER, Kenedy, Texas. H. D. STUMBERG, Helotes, Texas. JOHN HOFFER, San Angelo, Texas. MISS MINNIE IRVING, Center Point, Texas. FRANK SULTENFUSS, Center Point, Texas.

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Our Testimonials

Glad to get networked with you Jim. I have really had a lot of success  with my research thanks to Frontier Times and yourself of course. Mr.  Hunter was a God send in helping record enough information to help  future generations track our history. When our families arrived here in  Texas they were ahead of government, counties, etc. so it is a great  task to piece together details. Thanks and have a Merry Christmas  brother!