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Vol 18 No. 12 - September 1941

Commander Gordon Of The British Navy

By J. Marvn Hunter

From surveying the Red Sea, the east coast of Africa, the Sea of Marmora, and battling with slave traders, to the activities of a Texas ranchman is a long jump, but such were the experiences of Captain G. Keith Gordon, (account has old photo of him) who was the last survivor of the group of men who mapped the east coast of Africa and surveyed Constantinople harbor, against the express commands and under the imperial nose of the then all-powerful Sultan of Turkey. In 1881 he retired from the British Navy and came to the United States, and established the OWL ranch in Kimble county, Texas. Here is his story. NOTE: beginning in the October, 1941 issue, Frontier Times begins Captain Gordon's Memoirs, written about a year before he died, in which he tells of months spent in a life boat, how he hunted Captain Kidd's treasure, how he fought with negro slave traders, and relates incidents of thrilling adventures on the high seas as a midshipman, and as a commander of a sailing vessel in British service.

Mentions: large ranch interests near Junction in Kimble county * H. M. S. Fawn * H. M. S. Monarch * George Peabody * Zanzibar * Seyid Burgash bin Said * Sir Bartle * H. M. S. Briton *

Fort Belknap On The Brazos

By Lynn Eliot

Excellent historical account of the old Fort and its early notable activities from the eye-witness view of James Buchanan Long, of Llano, Texas - a buffalo hunter.

Mentions: John Whittlesie * Satanta * Buffalo Bill * the town of Jacksboro * Brig. Gen. David E. Twiggs * Col. Starr * Gen. Wm. T. Sherman * a bloody massacre of Indians on Salt Creek * Jesse Stem * Stem's Gap


Mentions: Coke R. Stevenson * Governor W. Lee O'Daniel * Richard Coke * Mr. S. C. Butler, of Kenedy, Texas * O. L. Adams, Medina * W. K. Hoffman, San Diego, Texas * Leslie Traylor, New York * Dr. S. E. Thompson of Kerrville * John McCarty of Amarillo * Elmer J. Edwards, Jr. of San Antonio * W. O. Dickerson of Roosevelt, Texas * Delos R. Johnson of Franklinton, La * Hon. A. P. Johnson of Carrizo Springs, Texas * Mrs. C. T. Traylor of Cuero * Mrs. L. B. Bone, Houston, Texas * Rev. W. A. McLeod, Cuero * Mr. J. L. Hiler of Frio Town, Texas * Belvie Lee Hiler of Pearsall * Eula Hiler of Dilley *

Cache Of Gold Guarded By A Rattlesnake

By J. Frank Dobie

Account of Pedro Hernandez and Longworth of San Antonio, and of the immense treasure of gold in an Uvalde Co. cave that was being made quite inaccessible due to the presence of what must have been an immense rattler. Mentions: the fabulous San Saba, or Lost Bowie Mine * The Broken Metate *

Peck Sharp, Old Cowboy, Wins A Prize

Account of an old cowboy, J. Peck Sharp, an interesting character who was born in Dark Valley, Palo Pinto county Texas in 1866. Mentions: Gunter Hotel * Bonaparte, Iowa * George Ketchem * Farmington * Tom Pender * Hef. Stuards * old Doc Simmons *

What Became Of Frank Jackson?

By J. Marvin Hunter

Account raises the question of what actually did become of Frank Jackson, longest surviving member of the Sam Bass gang, which had operated in Texas in the late 1870's. It is true that Jackson lived quietly in Arizona under an assumed name?

Mentions: Clifton, Arizona * Clifton Copper Era * Charlie Bull * The Arizona Copper Company * Chase Creek * Lordsburg * Morenci * Metcalf * the Hull Printing Company in El Paso * Joe Lea * a deputy sheriff named Durbin * Bisbee * Jeff Ake * Eugene Manlove Rhodes * Alamagordo, New Mexico * Round Rock * Sebe Barnes * James B. O'Neil * Milt Tucker * John Wesley Hardin, Scott Cooley * Ben Thompson, King Fisher, George Gladden * James B. O'Neil *

Chisholm's Portrait Hung In S. & S. Club

By Edward N. Wentworth.

Mentions: the Saddle and Sirlion Club in Chicago * the Kansas Pacific R. R. * Texas town of Ringgold * Red River Station * Tallahina Rogers * Will Rogers * James Rogers * Robert Bean * Fort Towson, Ark * James Edwards * Fort Holmes * Bilby, Seminole county, Oklahoma * Booneville, Mo * Baxter Springs, Kans * Blaine county, Oklahoma * Edward Fitzgerald Beale * Othmar Hoffler * Jeff Wood * Noah Armstrong * A. T. Mitchell * M. H. Roberts * S. O. Durst * C. M. Grady * N. J. Jones * John R. Bannister of Austin * Mrs. Beatrice Gay of Santa Anna * Millard Sampson, of Santa Anna * J. J. Gregg * Dr. P. B. Hill * Colonel M. L. Crimmins * C. M. Grady of Brownwood * Dan W. Roberts, Jeff Maltby, John B. Jones, John R. Hughes, Frank Jones *

Mrs. Loderick R. Gray, A Pioneer

By Ida Babcock-Hall, Austin, Texas

Account of Mrs. Loderick R. Gray at Lometa, Texas. Martha Nettie McFarlin (Mrs. Gray) was born in Llano county, December 11, 1858, and lived in the wilds of Llano county when only a few white folk had made permanent settlements—when the coming of darkness brought terrors. The anxious whine of dog, the sudden tinkling of a cowbell, the neighing of horses or the sound of running hoofs might mean that a burly redskin was stealthily slipping upon a settler's home. Such days were fraught with danger. Here is her story.

Mentions: Mr. Dunman * the murder of Reverend Dancer * Putman family * a Mr. Jackson * Sister Nannie and sister Eliza * Mr. John Barcus * Sam Richardson * Dr. Isaac Reams * Dead Man's Hole in Burnet county * Marble Falls * Brothers Band * John Scott * the Johnson family * Burnet county * Legion Valley * John Friend * Miss Amanda Townsend * Mrs. Rebecca Johnson * Mrs. Samantha Johnson * the Bradfords * Lee Temple Friend * Melinda Caudle * Mr. and Mrs. Phelps * Birdtown * the oldest child, Nannie * Miss Martha White * South Gabriel creek * Reverend Bob Davis * John Epochs * Reverend Ephriam McDaniel, a Baptist minister * Jennings Creek community * Bertram * Mormon Mill in Burnet county * Mr. Reams * Cedar Mill * Alec Barton * T. D. Vaughn * South Gabriel * J. W. Gray * J. D. Riley, N. B. Lockett, T. D. Vaughn, Charley Wolf * Mrs. Ross * Lometa * Nelson Gray *

Lee Hall Gets His Men

By Col. M. L. Crimmins

Of notable Texas Ranger Captain, Lee Hall, it is said, "He did more to rid Texas of desperadoes and establish law and order than any other Texan ever had. He has made more bad men lay down their guns and delivered more desperadoes and outlaws into the custody of the courts and used his own gun less than any other officer in Texas." Here is his story.

Mentions: the Rough Riders camp in Roosevelt Park, San Antonio * Dora Neill Raymond's excellent book, "Captain Lee Hall of Texas," * the Taylor-Sutton feud * John Wesley Hardin * DeWitt county * Jim Taylor * Marshal John Helm * Tres Palacios * Joseph McCoy the pioneer cattle shipper * General Mackenzie * Dr. Philip Brazell * Bill Meador * Theodore Brazell * Dave Augustine * Bill Meador * General Williams Steele * Joe Sitterlie * William Cox; Jacob Ryan, David Augustine, Frank Heister and Charles Heissig * Red Hall of Denison and Sherman * Captain Jack Elgin

John B. Omohundro, "Texas Jack"

By J. Marvin Hunter.

John B. Omohundro, more familiarly known as "Texas Jack," was one of the daring frontier characters of the West - He was a sailor, soldier, Indian fighter and scout who ranked in fearlessness and quick action with any of the noted men of that day. Here is his story.

Mentions: Colonel J. B. Stuart * General Floyd * Buffalo Bill Cody * Ned Buntline * Leadville * Madamoiselle Morlacci

Capt. W. A. Miller, Warrior And Gentleman

By Garland R. Farmer

Account of Captain W. A. Miller of Henderson, Rusk county, Texas. Miller was born August 17, 1837, in Georgia, but came with his folks to Texas in 1838. He distinguished himself at the battles of Mansfield, Oak Hills, Pea Ridge and Prairie Grove. His first battle was a skirmish with the Yankees on Wilson's creek, near Springfield, Mo., in the summer of 1861, and at the time of Lee's surrender he and his company were on duty on the old San Gabriel River, just below Georgetown, Texas. Here is his story.

Mentions: Alexandria, Louisiana * Gibsontown * the present town of Henderson * R. H. Cumby Company B * Colonel Lane * Captain Thompson * Cherokee Chief Boles * General Thomas Jefferson Rusk

Westward, Ho! In 1941

By Elmer J. Edwards, Jr.

Mentions: Kerrville * Water Street * Junction * Kimble county * Coke Stevenson * Fort Terrett * Sonora * Sutton county * Noah H. Rose * Devil's River Junction * West Texas Woolen Mills * J. M. Christian * Mia Amigas Club * Eldorado High School * Mrs. W. W. Carson of the San Angelo * Mrs. Robert Carter * Mr. J. B. Moore of Del Rio * Uncle Bill Kellis * Mr. and Mrs. Settles * Big Spring * the Scharbauer Hotel * Permian Basin District * the T. & P. Railway * the XIT Ranch rodeo at Dalhart * Ab Blocker * "Uncle Henry" Slack * Langtry * Mentone * Odessa * Oliver Loving * the JA Ranch in Palo Duro * Col. Charles Goodnight * Red Bluff Dam * Mr. and Mrs. J. T. Smith * Jim White * Col. Thomas Boles * Ed A. Cahoon * Roswell * William H. Bonney * tire La Palorna Bar, "the Original Bar of Billy the Kid," * El Torreon * Mrs. Clyde Hunt * Wilbert Hunt * Acoma Indians * Bernalillo * the ancient pueblo of Kuaua of the Tiguex Indians * Francisco Vasquez Coronado * Geronimo * Frank Luke, Jr * Mr. Griggs * W. D. Smithers

Michael Cronican, A Mier Fighter

By Houston Wade

This account of one of the soldiers who fought the infamous battle of Mier again on Christmas Day, 1842, raises the mysterious destiny of the Irishman who fought nobly and was reportedly killed in the fight, but whose personage reappears in Texas history after some years.

Mentions: Thomas J. Green in his records on the Mier Expedition * James Austin Sylvester * Adolphus Stern, a Jewish citizen of Nacogdoches * New Orleans Greys * William G. Cooke * Benjamin Rush Milam * N. O. Grays * William Graham * Captain Robert Boyce * Captain William M. Logan * Holland Lodge No. 1, A. F. & A. M. * James Collinsworth * Captain Charles Kirk Reese * the Dawson men * Wilbur Cherry, R. D. Serbin, Gideon K. Lewis, another Mier prisoner, B. F. Neal and Willard Richardson * Gideon K. Lewis * J. S. (Old Rile) Ford * James A. Glasscock * Miss Ellen R. Henry of Galveston * Mrs. Mary A. Henry * Postmaster A. B. Reagan, of Brady

Dr. Robert T. Hill Passes On

Account of Dr. Robert Thomas Hill, 82, geologist, geographer, a youthful frontier cowboy who became Texas' most distinguished man of science.

Mentions: Dr. Arthur D. White, president of Cornell University * Garrett F. Service * Dr. Whitehill * Major Powell * Dr. Alexander Agassiz * Charles Schuchert * the Balcones Fault * Paluxy and Woodbine acquifers * Justine Hill * Mrs. Jean Hill Guttormsen * Miss Justine Robinson

Some Exploits Of Ben Thompson

By Odie Minatra

Account of the character of enigmatic Ben Thompson, gunman, gambler, and city marshal of Austin, Texas by those who knew him personally.

Mentions: J. Gregg Hill * the Littlefield building * Glaser * Sam Moore, late frontiersman of Seguin and Austin * Captain John Talley * Shanghai Pearce * George Smith * Dan Searight

James Kerr, First Settler On The Guadalupe

By John Henry Brown

Account of James Kerr, who was born near Danville, Ky., September 24th, 1790, removed with his father to St. Charles county, Missouri, in 1808, was a gallant soldier in the war of 1812-15 —a lieutenant under Capt. Nathan Boone—had been sheriff of St. Charles county, a representative in the legislature and then a senator. He had a wife, three little children and eight or ten favorite negro servants. With these he arrived at the mouth of the Brazos in February, 1825. Before the first of July his wife and two of his little children had died—the first in a camp, the others on the roadside. During July he reached the present site of Gonzales, accompanied by five or six single men and his servants. He erected cabins, laid out the town site as the capital of the future colony and began the survey of its lands. On the 1st or 2nd day of July, 1826, in his absence, Indians attacked his houses in the temporary absence of most of the inmates, killed one man and severely wounded another, robbed the establishment and then retired. Thereupon Maj. Kerr removed nearer the coast, to the Lavaca river, in what is now Jackson county, but continued his labors as surveyor of DeWitt's colony, and subsequently, also, as surveyor of the Mexican colony of De Leon, next below on the Guadalupe. To his laborious duties, in January, 1827, were added the entire superintendence of the affairs of Col. Ben R. Milam in his proposed Southwestern colony.

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