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Vol 26 No. 06 - March 1949

The Chihuahua Trail

Much history has been written about the Santa Fe Trail; little about the Chihuahua Trail. Yet, statistics show that more commerce in merchandise, silver, copper, lead and gold passed over this trail than over the Santa Fe Trail.

The Chihuahua Trail, as it became known, was begun in 1848 by a small group of pioneers, including John W. Spencer, John B. Davis, Ed Frobboese, August Santleben, John Holly, Sha Hogan, John Burgess, Brooks, Calderon, Richard Daly, William Russell and others. These were the first set of adventurers, who later became known as the trail drivers, to complete successful journeys; although the Connelly expedition, from Chihuahua City, across Texas, into Arkansas, and return, was made in 1839. Here is the story.

Mentions: Presidio del Norte , Del Rio , the Southern Pacific Railroad , Horse-Head Crossing , Leon Waterholes , Joe Head , Tinaja San Esteben , El Alamita , Berrindo , Charco de Alsate , Burgess Spring , Paisano Pass , John Davis , The Gonzales brothers of Saltillo , August Santleben , "Edgar's Boneyard." , sister Stephens , Colonel Terrell , Mr. Peter Gallagher, of Fort Stockton , Capt. James Edgar , Eighteen Mile crossing on Devil's River , Entinio Mageras , Beaver Lake , the Galveston, Harrisburg and San Antonio Railroad , Corn Hill, in Glasscock Valley , Bone Hollow ,

Tragedies On The Old Overland Stage Route

George W. Baylor

Among the many bloody deeds that occurred on the old overland stage line none was more tragic perhaps than the death of James Giddings, a brother of Colonel George H. Giddings, which occurred some time in April, 1863. The guard to the overland stage that made the discovery of the massacre of Giddings and the men at the station were under that veteran old frontiersman, Captain Skillman, whose tragic death afterwards will be remembered by old citizens of West Texas. The party consisted of the following men, some of whom not long afterwards met with a tragic death near Cook's Springs: Bob Swope, Bob Avaline, William Wright, Freeman Thomas, John Wilson, Mat. Champion, Charley Lowry and William Ramsey. This is the story.

Mentions: Snap Mitchell , Eighteen Mile Water Hole , J. Eli Terry , San Elizario , Vining , Joe Sayers , Will Lempert , Judge Howard Ellis , Atkinson , Jack Sullivan, , a man named Curry , Gus Stewart , Fort Quitman , Mr. Lo , Eagle Springs , Sierra Blanca , Vining , General Grierson , Van Horn's Wells , El Muerte, (Dead Man's Hole) , Sierra Diablos , Eagle Springs toward Quitman , Major Courtney, Captain Lebo and Dr. Kingly , Standmitoffski , Boyne Bonito , old Victorio, the chief of the Mescalero Apaches , Ysleta , General Grierson at Quintana , Carrizo Springs , Mrs. Graham , old man Grant , Bass Canyon , General Byrnes , Don Jesus Cobas, Tres Castillos , Fort Hancock ,

Ike T. Pryor Was A Great Cattleman

J. Marvin Hunter, Sr.

Colonel Ike T. Pryor, who died in San Antonio in 1937, was one of the outstanding cattlemen and trail drivers of Texas in the 1870s and 1880s. His life story reads like a romance, for it was made up of thrills and pathos, struggles and hardships, failures and triumphs that befell but few men who successfully overcame such obstacles that he met and conquered. A pioneer of the days of the unfenced range, he became one of the most widely known cattlemen of America, and if his reminiscences had ever been written they would afford a complete panorama of the cattle industry of the United States. From the early days of the grass trails, when the great herds of Texas longhorns were driven thousands of miles to market, down to the time when bred cattle, modern marketing systems and rail transportation, he had been an active participant. This is his story.

Mentions: Born at Tampa, Florida, in 1852 , Spring Hill, Tennessee , the Army of the Cumberland , Coffeyville, Kansas , Charles Lehmberg ranch in Mason county , John W. Gamel, Major Seth Maberry, Ship Martin , Ruth Hunnicutt , Jack Jones , Jeff Farr , the Brady prairie , the three Batey brothers from Tennessee , the Iron Front saloon , Johnny Blocker , Gue Roe , Driskill Hotel , Littlefield ,

Espantosa Lake

Cyrus Tilloson

Between Crystal City and Carrizo Springs, on the border of Dimmit and Zavala counties, lies Lake Espantosa, noted in frontier history, Mexican legendary tales and folklore, as a place of dreadful happenings, hence the name, which means frightful or ghostly, which its natural setting conveys, as well as the tales told about its ghosts.

The Nueces river probably flowed through it at one time, but it now receives its waters from a number of small creeks that drain a large scope of country composed of hills covered with thorn bush. Here is the story.

Mentions: German families, from Bavaria, named Dippelhofer, Wetter and Schwartz , Copano , German men, named Paulsen, Ludecus and Talloer , John Charles Beale , Dr. James Grant , Kinney county , Los Moras Creek , La Villa de Dolores , Juan Salazar , Elm Creek , Mrs. Harris , Anastacio Ramirez , Mrs. Horn , Tom Callaghan , Pedro Romero , Tony Ramirez

The Fall Of The Alamo

R. M. Potter

“The fall of the Alamo, the tragic results of which are so well known, so far as the final assault is concerned, have not been fully or correctly given in any of the current histories of Texas. The reason is obvious when it is remembered that not a single combatant from within survived to tell the tale, while the official reports of the enemy were neither circumstantial nor reliable. A trustworthy account of the assault could only be compiled by comparing the verbal accounts of such of the assailants as could be relied on for veracity, and adding to this, such light on the matter as may be gathered from the mil4tary documents of the day. As I was a resident of Matamoras when the event happened, and for several months after the invading army returned thither, I had opportunities for obtaining the kind of information referred to which few persons if any, still living in Texas, have possessed; and I have been urged to publish what I have gathered on the subject that an interesting fragment of history may be saved. Among the facts which have been perverted is...”

Mentions: General Jackson , General Urrea , Cuatla , Matamoras , the dragoon regiment of Dolores , Colonel W. B. Travis , J. B. Bonham , David Crockett , the Alamo Chapel , Toluca, Ximenes, Matamoras, Los Zapadores (or sappers) , Brigadier-General Amador , the Zapadores , General Castrillo , Dequello , Colonel Duque

Charlie Scheurich Of Taos

J. Marvin Hunter. Sr.

Account of Charlie Scheurich, Jr. who owned a general merchandise store in the little mining town, and his father spent much of his time there assisting in the store, although his home was at Taos, where his wife and one or two daughters lived. The elder Scheurich was then about 75 years old, and very active. He spoke English, Spanish, German, and several Indian dialects. He came to New Mexico in 1854, as a teamster with a wagon train hauling goods from Independence, Missouri, to Santa Fe. He liked the Territory so well that he decided to remain and "grow up with the country." He was intimately acquainted with Kit Carson, who took quite an interest in "the young man from the States," and it was in Carson's home at Taos that he first met the beautiful Teresina Bent, Carson's niece, and married her a year or two later. This is his story.

Mentions:, a saddler named David Workman , Howard county , John C. Fremont , the Bland Herald in Bland, New Mexico , Josepha Jarimilla , Charles Bent , Cochita , the Cochiti Mining Company , Albemarle

Remarkable Incidents of the Buffalo Range

John R. Cook was one of the famous buffalo hunters on the Plains of Texas in the 1870s, and in 1907 he wrote and published a book, "The Border and the Buffalo," which is now classed as a collector's rare item. From this book comes this story.

Mentions: a man named Cox , Howard and Mitchell counties , the Red Fork of the Colorado , the famous Hackberry Springs , Dennis Ryan , Agua Grande , Captain Nolan , General Sheridan , Tom Green county , Soda Springs.

A Cowboy In Texas History

Zelma Arnold

“The history of Texas is one of the most colorful and kaleidoscopic in the annals of any state or nation, especially so during its colonization and revolt from Mexico. The men who had migrated to Texas regardless of their purposes collectively and individually made Texas history. To a man they stood for Texas; as one of them expressed it at a gala reception in Brazoria, Texas given by Judge Cummins to celebrate the capture of Velasco in 1832:

"Long corns and short shoes to the insidious enemies of Texas -- whether from Amsterdam, Rotterdam, or any other dam place -- dam them all in a heap."

The world knows about the ardent homeseeker, Stephen F. Austin; the romantic adventurer, Sam Houston; the gallant soldier, William B. Travis, and many others. But there were many others. But there were many others of lesser fame who in their way, did as much to make Texas history. One of these was Henry Karnes, the first Texas cowboy.” This is his story.

Mentions: Dave McComb , Deaf Smith , Aqua Dulce Creek , Refugio , Old Roan

The Story of David Crockett's Watch

“We do not know just where Davy Crockett's famous watch is today, but presume that it is in possession of some of his descendants here in Texas. In 1856 the State of Texas granted to Crockett's widow a headright of land in Hood county, on the Brazos river. Mrs. Crockett moved her family to Texas, and died near Granbury in the 1860's. Her re-mains rest in the little cemetery at Old Acton, and there is a beautiful monument at her grave.

Many version have been given of how the historic watch worn by David Crockett for years before he was killed in the Alamo massacre March 6, 1836, was restored to the Crockett family, but this seems to be the really authentic account.”

Mentions: The Hon. John W. Crockett , Lost Prairie, on Red River , Isaac N. Jones , Robert H. Crockett, John W. Crockett , D. Crockett.

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