Infomotions, Inc.The Second William Penn A true account of incidents that happened along the old Santa Fe Trail / Ryus, William H., 1839-



Author: Ryus, William H., 1839-
Title: The Second William Penn A true account of incidents that happened along the old Santa Fe Trail
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Title: The Second William Penn
       A true account of incidents that happened along the
       old Santa Fe Trail

Author: William H. Ryus

Release Date: February, 2006 [EBook #9805]
[Yes, we are more than one year ahead of schedule]
[This file was first posted on October 19, 2003]

Edition: 10

Language: English

Character set encoding: ASCII

*** START OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK THE SECOND WILLIAM PENN ***




Produced by Juliet Sutherland and PG Distributed Proofreaders




THE SECOND WILLIAM PENN

A true account of incidents that happened along the old Santa Fe Trail
in the Sixties.

BY W.H. RYUS


1913



PREFACE

By Col. Milton Moore

[Illustration: COL. MILTON MOORE.]

You who take the trouble to read these reminiscences of the Santa Fe
Trail may be curious to know how much of them are literally true.

The writer of this preface was intimately acquainted with the author of
this book, and knows that he has not yielded to temptation to draw upon
his imagination for the incidents related herein, but has adhered
strictly to the truth. Truth is, sometimes, "stranger than fiction," and
is an indispensable requisite to accurate history, yet it may sometime
destroy the charm of fiction.

The author of this book had a real and exceptional knowledge of Indian
character and Indian traits, and his genuine tact in trading and
treating with them, and the success which he had in sustaining friendly
relations with them was one of the wonders of the West, and was a
circumstance of much comment by those who had occasion to use the
Santa Fe Trail.

It is small wonder, then, that "Little Billy of the Stage Coach" won for
himself the title of the "Second William Penn."

In the early Sixties, the region through which the Old Trail passed was
an unexplored territory where constant struggles for supremacy between
the Wild Red Man and the hardy White man were carried on.

Many and tragical were the hardships endured by those who attempted to
open up this famous highway and establish a line of communication
between the East and the West. The only method of travel was by odd
freight caravans drawn by oxen or the old-fashioned, lumbering
uncomfortable Concord Stage Coaches drawn by five mules.

The stage coach carried besides its passengers the United States mail
and express.

An escort of United States militia often accompanied the stage coach in
order to protect it against attacks of the Indians at that time when the
plains were invested with the Arapahoes, Comanches, Cheyennes, Kiowas
and other tribes, some of whom were on the warpath, bedecked in war
paint and feathers.

The Indians were often in search of something to satisfy their hunger,
rather than the scalps of the white men. The author of this book won
their confidence and friendship by dividing with them his rations, and
showing them that he was willing to compensate them for the privilege of
traveling through their country. He had so many friendly conferences and
made so many treaties with them while on his trips across the plains
that he came to be called the "Second William Penn."

He came into personal contact with the famous chiefs of the Indian
tribes, and won their good will to such an extent that their behavior
toward him and his passengers was always most excellent.

The author has, in these pages, told of many encounters between the
whites and the Indians that were narrated to him by the Indians. He
holds the Indians blameless for many of the attacks attributed to them,
and calls attention to the Chivington Massacre and the Massacre of the
Nine Mile Ridge, related in the following pages.

He begs the readers not to censure too severely the Indian who simply
pleaded for food with which to satisfy his hunger, and sought to protect
his wigwam from the murderous attacks of unscrupulous white men.

I gladly recommend this tale as sound reading to all who desire to know
the truth concerning the incidents which actually occurred along the Old
Trail, and the real friendly relations which existed between the Indians
and the white men, such as our Author and Kit Carson, who were well
acquainted with their motives and characteristics.

Respectfully submitted,

MILTON MOORE.


"Bathe now in the stream before you, Wash the war-paint from your faces,
Wash the blood-stain from your fingers, Bury your war-clubs and your
weapons, Break the red stone from this quarry, Mould and make it into
Peace Pipes, Take the reeds that grow beside you, Deck them with your
brightest feathers, Smoke the calumet together, And as brothers live
henceforward."

(Hiawatha.)




REMINISCENCE OF THE OLD SANTA FE TRAIL.

BY W. H. RYUS, MAIL AND EXPRESS MESSENGER AND CONDUCTOR.

Introductory

W. H. Ryus, better known as "the Second William Penn" by passengers and
old settlers along the line of the Old Santa Fe Trail because of his
rare and exceptional knowledge of Indian traits and characteristics and
his ability to trade and treat with them so tactfully, was one of the
boy drivers of the stage coach that crossed the plains while the West
was still looked upon as "wild and wooly," and in reality was fraught
with numerous, and oftentimes, murderous dangers.

At the time this story is being recalled, our author is in his
seventy-fourth year, but with a mind as translucent as a sea of glass,
he recalls vividly many incidents growing out of his travels over the
Santa Fe Trail.

Having the same powers of appreciation we all possess, for confidences
reposed in him, he lovingly recalls how his passengers would press him
to know whether he would be the driver or conductor to drive the coach
on their return. Some of these passengers declare that it was really
beautiful to see the adoration many Indians heaped upon the driver,
"Little Billy of the Stage Coach," and they understood from the
overtures of the Indians toward "Billy" that they were safe in his
coach, as long as they remained passive to his instructions, which were
that they allow him to deal with whatever red men they chanced to meet.

Sometimes a band of Indians would follow his coach for miles, protecting
their favorite, as it were, from dangers that might assail him. They
were always peaceable and friendly toward Billy in exchange for his
hospitality and kindness. It was a by-word from Kansas City to Santa Fe
that "Billy" was one boy driver and conductor who gave the Indians
something more than abuse to relate to their squaws around their wigwam
campfires.

The dangerous route was the Long Route, from Fort Larned, Kansas, to
Fort Lyon, Colorado, the distance was two hundred and forty miles with
no stations between. On this route we used two sets of drivers. This
gave one driver a chance to rest a week to recuperate from his long trip
across the "Long Route." A great many of the drivers had nothing but
abuse for the Indians because they were afraid of them. This made the
Indians feel, when they met, that the driver considered him a mortal
foe. However, our author says that had the drivers taken time and
trouble to have made a study of the habits of the Indians, as he had
done, that they could have just as easily aroused their confidence and
secured this Indian protection which he enjoyed.

It was a hard matter to keep these long route drivers because of the
unfriendliness that existed between them and the Indians, yet the Old
Stage Company realized a secureness in Billy Ryus, and knew he would
linger on in their employ, bravely facing the dangers feared by the
other drivers and conductors until such a time as they could employ
other men to take his place.

Within the pages of this book W. Ryus Stanton relates many amusing and
interesting anecdotes which occurred on his stage among his passengers.
From passengers who always wanted to return on his coach he always
parted with a lingering hope that he would be the driver (or conductor,
as the case might be) who would return them safely to their destination.
Passengers were many times "tender-footed," as the Texas Rangers call
the Easterners. Billy soothingly replied to all questions of fear,
soothingly, with ingenuity and policy.

Within Billy's coach there was carried, what seemed to most passengers,
a superfluity of provision. It was his fixed theory that to feed an
Indian was better than to fight one. He showed his passengers the need
of surplus foods, if he had an idea he would be visited by his Red
Friends, who may have been his foes, but for his cunning in devising
entertainment and hospitality for them. The menus of these luncheons
consisted chiefly of buffalo sausage, bacon, venison, coffee and canned
fruits. He carried the sausage in huge ten-gallon camp kettles.

The palace coaches that cross the old trail today pulled by the
smoke-choked engines of the A.T. & Santa Fe R.R. carry no provision for
yelling Comanches, Cheyennes, Arapahoes, etc. They lose no time treating
and trading with the Indians, and are never out of sight of the
miraculous changes exhibited by the advanced hand of civilization.




CHAPTER I.

In 1861 He Starts as Mail Driver.

In the spring of 1861 I went home to Burlingame, Kansas, and went to
work on the farm of O.J. Niles. I had just turned the corner of
twenty-one summers, and I felt that life should have a "turning point"
somewhere, so I took down with the ague. This very ague chanced to be
the "turning point" I was looking for and is herewith related.

Mr. Veil of the firm of Barnum, Veil & Vickeroy, who had the mail
contract from Kansas City, Missouri, to Santa Fe, New Mexico, stopped
over at Burlingame, Kansas, and there met Mr. Niles, the man for whom I
was working. Mr. Veil told Mr. Niles that he wanted a farmer boy to
drive on the Long Route because the stage drivers he had were cowards
and not satisfactory. Niles told him that he had a farm hand, but, he
added, "he won't go, because he has the ague." "Oh, well," Mr. Veil
replied, "that's no matter, I know how to cure him; I'll tell him how to
cure himself." So they sent for me, and Veil told me how to get rid of
the ague. He said, "you dig a ditch in the ground a foot deep, and strip
off your clothing and bury yourself, leaving only your head uncovered,
and sleep all night in the Mother Earth." I did it. I found the earth
perfectly dry and warm. I had not much more than engulfed myself when
the influences of the dry soil began to draw all the poison out of my
body, and I had, as I most firmly believe, the most peaceful and
delightful slumber I had ever experienced since infancy. From that day
until the present time I have never had another chill. I gained 40
pounds of flesh in the next three months. I have known consumption to be
cured with the same "ague cure" on the plains.

The distance from Kansas City to Fort Larned, Kansas, is three hundred
miles. The distance from Fort Larned to Fort Lyon, New Mexico, is two
hundred and forty miles, and from Fort Lyon to Fort Union it is one
hundred and eighty miles, from Fort Union to Santa Fe it is one hundred
and eighty miles, making nine hundred miles for the entire trip.

The drive from Fort Larned, Kansas, to Fort Lyon, Colorado, was known as
the Long Route, being 240 miles, with no stations between; but across
that treacherous plain of the Santa Fe Trail I made the trip sixty-five
times in four years, driving one set of mules the entire distance,
camping out and sleeping on the ground.

The trips were made with five mules to each coach, and we took two mules
with us to supply the place of any mule that happened to get sick.
Sometimes, strange to note, going on the down grade from Fort Lyon to
Fort Larned we would have a sick mule, but this never occurred on the
up-grade to Fort Lyon. When a mule was sick we left it at Little Coon or
Big Coon Creek. Little Coon Creek is forty miles from Fort Larned. When
Fort Larned was my headquarters I always went after my sick mules, if I
had any, the next day and brought them in. Fort Larned was the regular
built fort with a thousand soldiers, a settlers' store, and the Stage
Company's station with its large corral of mules and horses; it was the
headquarters of the Long Route to furnish the whole route to Santa Fe.
If the sick mules happened to be at Little Coon Creek, the round trip
would be eighty miles, and it would sometimes take me and my little race
pony several days to make the trip, owing of course to the condition of
the sick mule and its ability to travel. Camping out on these trips, I
used my saddle for a pillow while my spread upon the ground served as my
bed. I would tie the lariat to the saddle so the pony would graze and
not get too far away from our "stomping ground." If the wolves came
around, which they often did, the pony would come whinnying to me, stamp
on the ground and wake me up. I usually scared them away by shooting
over their heads.

When we had several passengers, and wished to make time, we took two
coaches with two drivers and one conductor who had charge over the two
coaches. There was the baggage of several passengers to carry, bedding
for ourselves, provision for the whole crew and feed for the mules. We
usually made from fifty to sixty miles a day, owing to the condition of
the road and weather.

Sometimes coyotes and mountain wolves would molest us. The mountain wolf
is about as large as a young calf, and at times they are very dangerous
and blood-thirsty. At one time when my brother, C.W. Ryus, was with me
and we were going into Fort Larned with a sick mule, five of those large
and vicious mountain wolves suddenly appeared as we were driving along
the road. They stood until we got within a hundred feet of them. I
cracked my whip and we shot over their heads. They parted, three going
on one side of the road and two on the other. They went a short distance
and turned around and faced us. We thought we were in for a battle, and
again we fired over their heads, and, greatly to our satisfaction and
peace of mind, they fled. We were glad to be left alone and were willing
to leave them unharmed. Had we used our guns to draw blood it is
possible that they would have given chase and devoured us. We would not
have been in the least alarmed had we advanced upon five Indians, for we
would have invited them to join us and go to the station with us and get
something to eat. Not so with the wolves, they might have exacted our
bodies before they were satisfied with the repast.

I was never afraid of Indians, so hardly ever took an escort. My
greatest fear was that some white man would get frightened at the sight
of the reds and kill one of their band, and I knew if that should happen
we were in grave danger. I always tried to impress my passengers that to
protect ourselves we must guard against the desire to shoot an Indian.
Not knowing how to handle an Indian would work chaos among us. The
Indians did not like the idea of the white race being afraid of
them--the trains amassing themselves together seemed to mean to the
Indian that they were preparing for battle against them, and that made
them feel like "preparing for war in time of peace."

At one time on my route I remember as we were passing Fort Dodge,
Kansas, a fort on the Arkansas River, there was a caravan of wagons
having trouble with the Indians. I had an escort of some ten or fifteen
soldiers, but we passed through the fray with no trouble or
hair-splitting excitement.



CHAPTER II.

The Nine Mile Ridge Massacre.

During the coldest time in winter, in the month of January, 1863, nine
freight wagons left Santa Fe, New Mexico, on their way East. A few miles
before they reached the Nine Mile Ridge they encountered a band of
almost famished Indians, who hailed with delight the freight wagons,
thinking they could get some coffee and other provision. In this lonely
part of the world, seventy-five miles from Fort Larned, Kansas, and a
hundred and sixty-five miles from Fort Lyon, without even a settler
between, it was uncomfortable to even an Indian to find himself
without rations.

The Nine Mile Ridge was a high elevation above the Arkansas River road
running close to the river, on top of the ridge. The Indians followed
the wagons several miles, imploring the wagon boss to give them
something to eat and drink, which request he steadily refused in no
uncertain voice. When it was known by the red men that the wagon boss
was refusing their prayers for subsistence they knew of no other method
to enforce division other than to take it from the wagons.

The leader of the band went around to the head of the oxen and demanded
them to corral, stop and give them some provision. During the corraling
of the train one wagon was tipped partly over and the teamster shot an
Indian in his fright. Then the Indians picked up their wounded warrior,
placed him on a horse and left the camp, determined to return and take
an Indian's revenge upon the caravan. The wagon boss went into camp well
satisfied--but not long was his satisfaction to last.

After the Indians departed several teamsters who thought they knew what
was desired by the Indians reproached their wagon-boss for not having
complied with their request to give them food. His action in refusing
food resulted in a mutiny on the part of the teamsters, and after the
oxen were turned out to graze, the dispute between the teamsters and the
wagon-boss became so turbulent that if a few peaceably inclined drivers
had not arraigned themselves on the side of the wagon-boss he would have
been lynched.

Before daylight the Indians returned and attacked the wagons and killed
all the whites but one man who escaped down the bank into the river. He
floated down until he was out of hearing of the Indians. When he was
almost worn out and half frozen he got out of the river, wrung the water
from his clothing and started for Fort Larned, seventy-five miles
distant. After leaving the water he noticed a fire, and knew
instinctively that the Indians had set fire to their wagons, and
wondered how many, if any, of the company had escaped as he had so
far done.

Late in the afternoon of the next day a troop of soldiers discovered
this man several miles from Fort Larned in an almost exhausted
condition, dropping down and getting up again. The commanding officer
sent out some soldiers and brought him to the fort. I talked with this
man, and he told me that if the wagon-boss had given the Indians
something to eat, entertained them a little, or given them the smallest
hospitality, he believed they would all have been saved from
that massacre.

He said the Indians plead with the wagon-boss for food, and he thought
if the teamster had not lost his equanimity and made that first luckless
shot the massacre of the Nine Mile Ridge would never have become a thing
of history.

This tragedy created a great fright and made traveling across the plains
difficult. The Indians were hostile only because they did not know the
minds of the white men, and what their attitude toward them would be, if
they were not always prepared to defend themselves. Therefore the people
traveling on the plains in trains amassed themselves together for
protection, and the people at Fort Larned with their soldiers were very
much wrought up over the atrocious murders and the destruction of
property all along the whole Western frontier. In time of war one false
step may cause the death of hundreds. In this case the commanding
officer of the fort took the precaution to send out runners to call the
Indians together to the fort, in order to learn, if possible, the cause
of this fearful massacre and to get their statement concerning
their action.

The two Indians who came in verified the statement of the ox-driver, and
declared that if the teamster had not killed their inoffensive warrior
who only asked for something to eat there would have been no trouble at
all from them.

In defense of the Indian I will say that the people in general were all
the time seeking to abuse him. In almost all instances where I have read
of Indian troubles I have noticed that at all times it grew out of the
fact that the whites invariably raised the trouble and were always the
aggressors. Nevertheless, newspaper reports and any other report for
that matter, laid the blame at the door of the wigwam of the red man of
the forest.

It is my opinion that most of the trouble on the frontier was uncalled
for. The white man learned to fear the Indians always, when there was no
attempt on the part of the Indian to do him harm. Many times while I was
crossing the plains have bands of from thirty to forty Indians or more
come to us, catching up with us or passing us by. Had I not understood
them and their intentions as well as I did we would more than likely
have had trouble with them or have suffered severe inconvenience. We
never thought of fear when they were going along the road, and many
times I would call them when I would camp for meals to come and get a
cup of coffee. They would go back with us to camp. We did not care what
their number was, we would always divide our provisions with them. If
there were a large number of Indians, and our provisions were scarce, I
would tell them so, but also tell them that notwithstanding that fact I
still had some for them. Then if they only got a few sups of coffee
around and a little piece of bread they were always profoundly grateful
and satisfied that we had done our best.

In order to let them know we were scarce of bread, etc., I would say,
"poka te keta pan;" in the Mexican language that is interpreted "very
little bread." Bread, in the Mexican or Indian language, is "pan," and
when they understood they would say "si," which is interpreted "yes."
They showed us their appreciation for the little they received just as
though we had given them a whole loaf of bread apiece.

If we only had a few cups of coffee and had seventy or eighty Indian
guests we would give it to one of the Indians and he would divide it
equally among his number. He would place the cup so it would contain an
equal amount of the coffee. Then one of the Indians would get up from
the ground (they always sit on the ground grouped all about us when they
ate with us) and take the cups and hand them around to every fifth man,
or such a one as would make it average to every cup of coffee they had.
The Indians would break the bread and give to each one, according to
what his share equally divided would be. When they come to drink their
coffee every Indian who had a cup would raise it to their lips at once,
take a swallow of the beverage, then pass the cup on to the next one.
They did the bread the same way. After finishing their repast they
invariably thanked us profusely in their Indian style for what they had
been given. There were times when I had plenty of provisions to give
them all they needed or required to satisfy their hunger. At no time was
my coach surrounded with hostile intent without departing from it in
friendliness. At the same time I knew they had some great grievances.

[Illustration: The First William Penn, in 1670, Treating with the
Indians.

This picture is placed in the book for the purpose of drawing attention
to the methods employed by the First William Penn in connection with the
same methods employed by the Second William Penn to successful treaty
with the Indians. His friendliness overcame any hostilities which they
might have previously had.]



CHAPTER III.

Ryus' Coach Is Surrounded by Indians, Their Animosities are Turned to
Friendliness, Through Ryus' Wit and Ingenuity--"Hail the Second William
Penn."

At one time in the year of 1864 when I arrived in Fort Larned on my way
from Kansas City, Missouri, to Santa Fe, New Mexico, there was a great
scare, and a commanding officer, Colonel Ford, told me that they
expected a raid on them most any time from Indians.

In July of that year the Cheyennes, Kiowas, Arapahoes and some Comanche
and Hickory Apaches were camped a mile north of Fort Larned. The
commanding officer of the fort told me he could only let me have about
thirty soldiers for an escort. I told him that if we should have trouble
with the Indians thirty soldiers would be just as good as a thousand,
and that I had rather take my chances with thirty soldiers than more.

We left Fort Larned a little before noon and arrived at Big Coon Creek,
twenty-two miles from Fort Larned, where we stopped for supper at about
four o'clock in the afternoon. A lieutenant of my escort in charge of
the soldiers put out a guard. While we were eating supper the guards
shot off their guns and came rushing into camp with news that a thousand
or more Indians were hidden along the banks of Coon Creek. The
lieutenant placed double guard and came out to me and gravely suggested
that we go back to Fort Larned and get more soldiers before attempting
to cross farther into the Great Divide.

I told the lieutenant to take his soldiers and go back to Fort Larned
and I would go on. He asked me why I did not go alone in the first
place. I told him that I needed him NOW, and he asked me how that was, I
told him that if he would take his soldiers and go back to Fort Larned
the Indians would follow him and let me alone. He said he would go with
me. We finished our dinner and I went to the soldiers' wagons and got
two big armfuls of bread, about sixty pounds of bacon and a large bucket
of coffee. I took them down to our camp, spread a newspaper upon the
ground, laid the bacon, bread and coffee on the spread, placed a handful
of matches near the bread, then went to our own mess and took several
cans of coffee and bread from it, left them one of our buckets and an
extra coffee pot that I carried with me, and got a large camp kettle
from the soldiers and left it for the Indians. Then I gathered a few
more buffalo chips and placed on the fire to keep it from going out, and
my plan was complete.

I told the lieutenant to take his soldiers and drive on over the hill
just out of sight and to stop there. I sent one of my coaches ahead and
all of my passengers got into that coach. I told my driver to go up to
the top of the hill and stop the mules there, but to keep in sight of
me. I had my coach driven up the road about 100 yards, and on looking up
the creek I saw one Indian in war paint and feathers looking around the
bluff at me. That was the only one of their band I could see, so I got
up on top of my coach and motioned for him to come to me.

[Illustration: "Billy of the Stage Coach," Treating with the Indians.]

Two Indians came up to within 100 feet of me, stopped and looked all
around. (Indians are very cautious that they do not get caught in a
trap). They rode up closer, looking intently at me all the time and
talking to each other. I motioned with both hands while I was standing
on top of the coach to come and I made them understand that I was
friendly. They answered by Indian signs, then gave a big yell,--an
Indian whoop--that liked to have froze the blood in the veins of the
passengers. They gave this whoop three times, and in an instant, it
seemed to me, five or six hundred Indians came down and formed in a line
about the coach on top of which I stood. I bowed to them and pointed to
the supper I had prepared for them. "They came, they saw, and were
conquered." They bowed to me in their Indian language and signs
expressing their gratitude for this hospitality. One old Indian came
forward, laid his bow and arrow and spears upon the ground (the Indian
sign of peace) and motioned for me to come and eat with them. I motioned
to them that I must go on, so they said good-bye. When I got to the top
of the hill I had my coach brought to a standstill. I slapped my hands
together and again motioned them good-bye. All at once these Indians
raised their hands and bade me good-bye, saluting me. These Indians were
fierce looking creatures in their war-paint and with their spears, which
they do not carry unless they expect trouble. That was the last time I
saw those Indians on that trip.

We had no other excitement on our way to Fort Lyons, unless the
encounter with the buffalo herds could be so called. A large herd of
buffalo were grazing on the plains and was not an unusual sight for the
drivers and me. However, when we came in sight of them one passenger
cried out, "Stop the coach, stop the coach; see, there are a thousand
buffalo standing belly deep in the lake." "Oh," I said, "you do not see
any water--that isn't a lake." "What?" one said, "do our eyes really
deceive us out here on these infernal plains? If it is not water and a
lake those buffalo are standing in, what in the name of sense is it?" I
told them that what they saw was nothing more than merely buffalo at a
distance on the plain; that what they saw that resembled water was
simply an optical illusion, called the "mirage." Webster describes the
word as follows: "An optical illusion arising from an unequal refraction
in the lower strata of the atmosphere and causing remote objects to be
seen double, as if reflected in a mirror, or to appear as if suspended
in the air. It is frequently seen in the deserts, presenting the
appearance of water. The Fata Morgana and Looming are species of
mirage." The mirage is one of the most beautiful scenes I ever beheld
and can only be seen on the plains or in deserts in its complete beauty.
It has to be seen to be appreciated. It makes a buffalo look like it had
two tails. Everything looks double.

We had not much sooner spied the buffalo than they spied us and they
started on the run across the road ahead of us. We were compelled to
wait a half an hour until they had crossed the road. We passed ox trains
every day or so going to and from New Mexico. In a few days we were in
Fort Lyon, where we separated from the passengers, and we drivers would
take the incoming coach and its passengers and drive back along the
Long Route.



CHAPTER IV.

The Chivington Massacre.

There was a station on the Union Pacific Road called Kit Carson; near
this station is a place called Sand Creek. It was at the latter named
place where Major John L. Chivington made his bloody raid.

In the summer of 1864 the combined Indian tribe went on the warpath.
They were camped north of Fort Larned, garrisoned with Kansas troops and
a section of a Wisconsin battery in charge of Lieutenant Croker, and
Captain Ried was the commanding officer. The Indians first commenced war
at Fort Larned and ran off some horses, beef cattle and some milch cows
that were the property of James Brice.

At the time Chivington made this raid there was camped at Sand Creek
about one hundred and fifty lodges of women, children and a few decrepit
Indians. This was one of the most brutal massacres a white man was ever
known to have commanded. With some sixty soldiers he said he would go
and "clean 'em up." He got there at daybreak and began to fire on the
Indians and killed a great many women and children. He burned several
lodges, confiscated their provisions, blankets and other supplies. The
Indian braves who were able to fight had some poisoned arrows which they
used advantageously. Every soldier they hit was either seriously injured
or killed. Up in the day the Indians got reinforcements and gave
Chivington's raiders quite a chase. These Indians were left entirely
destitute, for Chivington had seized all the supplies and either loaded
them into his wagons or destroyed them by fire. For that reason the
surviving Indians commenced depredations on the stock and other property
of settlers at Fort Larned.

It is said, but as to the truthfulness of the assertion I do not vouch,
for it did not happen under my personal knowledge--that a man by the
name of McGee, who was a teamster on a train loaded with flour for the
Government, was captured not far from there and was scalped and left for
dead; that the Eastern mail happening to come along shortly after, found
the body and placed it upon the boot of the coach; that before arriving
at Fort Larned they found that instead of carrying a corpse, as it was
at first supposed, they carried a living man. This man was taken to a
hospital and got well. He raised a family of children and his sons, some
of them live in or around Independence, Missouri. This man, Mr. McGee,
is said to be the only scalped man in the United States who lived after
being scalped.

After this brutal crime against the Indians, trouble commenced on the
Santa Fe Trail, and the sight of a "pale face" brought memories of the
assassination of their tribe by Chivington and his raiders.

At this Indian lodge where the Chivington massacre occurred lived the
father-in-law of John Powers. He was known the plains over as a
peaceable old Indian (Old One Eye), the chief of the Cheyennes, but his
"light was put out" during this desperate fight with Chivington.

Right here I will give an account of the marriage of John Powers to the
daughter of "Old One Eye."

Mr. Powers had crossed the plains several times as wagon-boss for
Colonel Charles Bent, who was the builder of Bent's Fort, also the new
fort at Fort Lyons. He was also wagon boss for Mr. Winsor, the settler
at Fort Lyon at the time of his marriage to the daughter of the
old chief.

Mr. Powers' mother, Mrs. Fogel, and his stepfather received the news of
Powers' marriage with many misgivings and rebuked him severely for
having made such a choice, finally vowing that they disowned him and
never wanted to see him again. With a finality not at all disconsolate
John Powers set about to polish his Indian wife for the polite society
of his mother, so he sent her to school, chaperoned by Miss Mollie Bent.

At the school at West Port this Indian girl soon excelled and under the
careful management of Miss Bent the wife of John Powers soon became an
expert in domestic science. But Powers, getting impatient for a meeting
between his mother and wife, asked Mollie Bent to arrange it. So
accordingly Miss Mollie visited at the home of her friends, the Fogels,
and during the gossip Miss Bent casually remarked to Mrs. Fogel that she
had a most charming friend, an Indian maid, over at the school whom she
would like to introduce to her.

When Mrs. Fogel insisted upon her coming over the following Saturday,
bringing with her her friend, Mollie Bent's heart was little less glad
than John Powers.

At last the eventful day had arrived. Mollie, accompanied with John's
"Indian squaw," went to the home of Mrs. Fogel. The high-spiritedness of
the Indian maid soon captivated Mrs. Fogel. After they had eaten supper
Mrs. Fogel was ordered to go to the front porch and entertain her other
visitor, Miss Mollie Bent, while she (Mrs. John Powers) did up the
kitchen work and cleared up the dining room. Mrs. Fogel did so with
reluctance, wondering greatly just how a real Indian would do up her
greatly "civilized" kitchen work. But she did not wonder long, for very
soon, indeed, the daughter of "Old One Eye" came to inquire of her host
where to place the dishes and how to arrange the dining room.

Mrs. Fogel was as pleased as she was surprised at the neatness and
despatch with which the work had been done and told her daughter-in-law
so, little knowing that she was dealing with her own son's wife. Each
Saturday after this John Powers' wife visited at the home of her
mother-in-law and learned many things from Mrs. Fogel that only endeared
her more to the Fogel family. Swiftness and despatch is one of the
Indian characteristics.

Early in the spring of 1863 Colonel Bent sold John Powers his train of
nine wagons for $10,000. Powers then started to the states in February
to load up. He loaded with corn to be taken to Fort Union, New Mexico,
for the Government. With his two original wagons his trip netted him
$10,000. He immediately returned to the states to make his second trip
and to visit his wife and Miss Mollie Bent in Kansas City, Missouri. His
mother did not know he was there. When he arrived in Kansas City from
his second trip he decided to put his "spurs" on, so to speak, so he
bought him a fine carriage, a team of prancing horses, and went like a
"Prince of Plenty" to the home of his mother.

It had already been planned that Hiawatha One Eye Powers, that is, Mrs.
John Powers, would be ensconced at the home of Mrs. Fogel, his mother.
Mollie Bent was there, and girl like, was delighted over the romance
being enacted under that roof. The heart of the Indian maid was beating
a happy tattoo under her civilian dress.

A cloud of dust up the road announced that John was now near the
parental roost. Mrs. Fogel with her motherly solicitude was awaiting him
with happy tears dimming her eyes. She took in with all a mother's
fondness his high-stepping prancers, his prosperous appearance, last but
not least the entire absence of the Indian daughter-in-law.

When the greeting of mother and son was over they went into the house
where Mrs. Fogel introduced her Indian friend, remarking as she did so
that she was a rare and exquisite wild flower of the plains.
Consternation and surprise chased themselves over Mrs. Fogel's features
when she, turning, beheld her protege pressed upon her son's breast.
With eyes ablaze with happy lights he led her to his mother, saying,
"Mother, I now introduce you to my wife."

When Mrs. Fogel had recovered from the surprise which accompanied the
shock of this disclosure she seized the girl in her motherly arms, and
if ever a girl got a "hugging" Hiawatha got one from an ACTUAL
mother-in-law.

Mollie Bent was hysterical, laughing and crying at the same time.

When John Powers had loaded his train he took back with him his wife and
her friend, Miss Mollie Bent, as far as Fort Lyon. Fifteen years after
this incident I met John Powers in Topeka, Kansas. He looked at me a
long time and I returned his stare. Finally he said, "Ho, there, ain't
your name Billy, the boy who used to get along with the Indians so well,
cuss your soul?" I told him that I was, and he said, "I'm right glad to
see you again, Billy." I asked him if he wasn't John Powers, and he told
me he was. Then I asked him his business in Topeka, and he told me he
had just brought his two daughters to Bethany College at Topeka, Kansas.

Mr. Powers was at that time badly afflicted with cancer of the tongue,
and he told me that he hadn't long to live. He also told me that he had
bought the Old Arcadia Indian Camp on the Picketwaire River (Picketwaire
means River of Lost Souls or Purgatory to the Indians). The camp is
between Fort Lyons and Bent's Old Fort on the opposite of the river.
Some of the land at that time was rated at $50 per acre and is now, most
of it, worth $100 per acre. His rating at the time of death in Dun &
Bradstreet's Commercial Report was four million dollars. That was the
last time I ever saw him.



CHAPTER V.

Barnum, Veil and Vickeroy Go a Journeying With Barlow and
Sanderson.--Vickeroy Is Branded "U.S.M."

In the fall of 1863 I quit the Long Route and went up on what is known
as the Denver Branch, driving from Bent's Old Fort, Colorado, to
Boonville, Colorado. On my last drive across the Long Route I had a
party of "dead heads." They were the "bosses"--owners of the Stage Coach
Company Line. That is, Barnum, Veil and Vickeroy were, and Barlow and
Sanderson were going over the trip with these fellows with a view of
buying out the interest of Vickeroy. There were three more passengers,
all on fun intent.

All of these fellows were, we will call it for lack of a better word,
"on a toot" and having lots of fun. They had poked so much fun at
Vickeroy that they finally got the best of him. Vickeroy enlisted the
three passengers on his side and sought an opportunity to "turn the
tables," so they made it up to brand Barlow and Sanderson with the
branding iron that was used to brand the company's mules. This iron had
the letters U.S.M. (United States Mail) on it. When I placed the frying
pan on the fire and it commenced to "siz," Vickeroy and two of the
passengers stood Barlow on his head and told him they were going to use
the branding iron. Barlow thought the branding iron was surely going to
be used upon the seat of his pants, but the accommodating Vickeroy had
the frying pan used instead. He gave the victim three taps on the seat
of his pants with the hot frying pan, one tap for "U," one for "S" and
the other for "M," then slapped him soundly and said, "Go, Mr. Mule,
when the Indians find you they will take you to the station because your
brand shows you to be the 'United States Male.'" Barlow's howls and
Vickeroy's laughter made those old plains resound with noises which may
have caused the spooks to walk that night. They were having lots of fun
about the "branded 'incoming' mule," or the new member of the company
that might be. All went smoothly a few days, but Vickeroy would
occasionally ask us how long they thought it would take a brand to wear
off so people could not know their "mule."

"Every dog has its day," and the day for Barlow's revenge was slowly but
surely coming. The second day after the episode described I had the
frying pan over the red hot coals fairly sizzling with a white heat
ready to place my buffalo steak onto it, but Barlow told me to "wait a
minute" and he said he "would attend to that skillet." I saw something
was in the air, so I took a back seat and awaited events.

About the time Vickeroy was unraveling some big yarn, all unconscious of
the designs Barlow had upon him, Veil and Sanderson grabbed him and had
quite a tussle with him to get him in a position to apply the branding
iron. The imprint left on the seat of Vickeroy's pants was not U.S.M.
this time, it was burned and scorched flesh, for lo, the tussle with his
determined tormentors had lasted too long,--the frying pan had gotten
too hot for good branding purposes, and for the comfort of the branded
one's hams.

When Mr. Barlow saw the condition of Mr. Vickeroy's clothing, he was
full of apologies, but the passengers would hear nothing of them, saying
that it was always bad for unruly mules when they got to kicking, and
Vickeroy would have to swallow his chagrin. The windup was a new "seat"
installed and a cushion for the "kicking mule."



CHAPTER VI.

Colonel Boone Gets Judge Wright's Enmity. Lincoln Appoints Col. A.G.
Boone Indian Agent. Arrangements Are Made With Commissioners For Indian
Annuities. Mr. Haynes Sends Troops to Burn Out Colonel Boone.

Driving from Bent's Old Fort to Boonville, Colorado, was usually a
pleasant drive for me. After I quit the Long Route and took up the
Denver Branch, I made my home with Colonel A.G. Boone, who is a great
great grandson of the immortal Daniel Boone.

President Lincoln was inaugurated in March, 1860, he saw Major Filmore
of Denver, Colorado, paymaster of the army, who was in Washington during
the last of March after the inauguration. He asked him if he knew of a
good man, capable of going among the Indians to make treaties with them,
so that transportation could cross the plains without escorts. Major
Filmore told the President that he knew Colonel A.G. Boone to be a
fearless man, that he was not only fearless, competent and capable, but
that no other man could do the work as efficiently as Colonel Boone,
because the Indians were so friendly disposed toward him. Lincoln said:
"Major, I wish you would see this Colonel for me, immediately. Give him
funds to come to Washington at once, for I want to have a consultation
with him on this 'Indian question.'"

Colonel Boone went to Washington, as arranged, and gave President
Lincoln his views on the subject under consideration. Colonel Boone, in
company with the President of the United States, went to the Board of
the Indian Commissioners. After talking over the various ways of
handling Indians, and giving his opinion of the different ways to
accomplish a safer journey across the plains without encountering
hostilities from Indians--he asked the Commissioners, and President,
what it was they particularly desired him to do? They told him that they
had sent for him to find out from him what he would do. They told him
they wanted him to sketch out how he would first proceed to such a task.
"Well," Colonel Boone replied, "do you want to give the Indians any
annuities, or what would be called annuities--quarterly annuities of
clothing, provisions, etc., and if so, how much, and so on?" The
commissioners made a rating. After considerable figuring, submitted
their figures to Boone's consideration. Upon looking the figures over,
Boone told them to cut those figures half in two. They thought they had
figured as closely as Boone would think expedient, and rather feared the
amount they had first allowed each one was too small. Colonel Boone
said: "If you figure the weight of the product you send them, you will
find it will take a good many trains to transport it yearly." Said he:
"Not only cut it in two, gentlemen, but cut it into eighths. Then
perhaps you can be sure to keep your agreement with them."

As to agreements, Indians are still, and have always been most
particular about living up to them. Personally, I would not make an
agreement with an Indian, however trivial, that I did not mean to carry
out to the letter. They have always been with me most careful to comply
with the terms of their contracts.

Colonel Boone was made Indian Agent, but President Lincoln told Colonel
Boone that he could not furnish him very many soldiers as escort on
account of the war. Mr. Boone told him he did not want an army, but that
he did want about three ambulances and the privilege of selecting his
own men to go with him.

Arrangements were then made to forward to Fort Lyon blankets, beads,
Indian trinkets, flour, sugar, coffee and such other articles of
usefulness as is generally found in settlement stores or commissaries.
When Colonel Boone told President Lincoln that he did not care for an
army of soldiers for escort, the President seemed astonished, and asked
him how he dared go down the Arkansas River without a good escort. Boone
told him that it was his idea that he would be safer with three men, the
ones he selected to go with him, viz.: Tom Boggs, Colonel Saint Vraine,
Major Filmore and Colonel Bent than he would be with a thousand soldiers.

The first thing Boone did was to send out runners to have the Indians
come in to Big Timbers, on the Arkansas River, where Fort Lyon is now
located. There Colonel Boone began his negotiations with the Indians
that opened up the Santa Fe Trail to such an extent that traveling was
less dangerous and expensive.

In the second place, Colonel Boone and his party proceeded to Fort Lyon
and at once began negotiations with the Indians as per his contract with
the Indian Commissioners and President Abraham Lincoln.

When they arrived at the place appointed where the agency was to be
established, there were camped about thirty thousand Indians with their
Indian provisions, buffalo meat, venison, antelope, bear and other wild
meats, and John Smith and Dick Curtis, who were the great Indian
interpreters for all the tribes. The Comanches, Kiowas, Cheyennes,
Sioux, Arapahoes, Acaddas, and other tribes, with Colonel Boone, arrived
at a complete understanding, and for about two years the Indians were
kindly disposed toward the Whites, or as long as Colonel Boone's
administration as Indian Agent existed. Any one then could cross the
plains without fear of molestation from the Indians.



CHAPTER VII.

Colonel Boone Acquires Squire Wright's Enmity.

In 1861, however, Judge Wright of Indiana, a member of Congress during
Boone's administration as Indian Agent, brought his dissipated son to
Colonel Boone's. Colonel Boone told the Congressman to leave him with
him and he could clerk in the Government store and issue the Indian
annuities.

This boy soon became a very efficient clerk, quit his drinking, and
under Colonel Boone's persuasion, developed into an honorable and
upright citizen of the United States.

When congress adjourned, Congressman Wright came again to the Indian
Agency at Fort Lyons where he had left his son with Colonel Boone.
Finding this son so changed, so assiduous to business, so positive in
manner, so thoroughly free, as it seemed from the follies of his younger
days--follies that had warped all his best natures--due, as Judge Wright
was compelled to confess, to the timely efforts of Colonel Boone, there
sprang into the breast of Judge Wright an unquenchable flame of
jealousy. What right had Colonel Boone to hold such an influence over
this boy, the pampered and humored dissipate of this Congressman from
Indiana, when his own commands, and his mother's prayers had held no
such influence?

It was with sadness that Judge Wright remembered the weak lad he had
left on Colonel Boone's hands, a victim of a father's lack of training,
and found here, instead, the same lad, but with much of the weakness
erased, a man now, with an ambition to do and to be.

At sight of this miracle wrought by the cleverness of Colonel Boone,
Judge Wright rebelled. There entered his heart, a subtle fiend, a
poisoned arrow, inspired by the rescuer of his son, good, brave, Colonel
Boone. Had not this stranger entered the heart of his boy and opened up
the deep wells of his intellect, buoyed up a hope within his heart that
goodness was greatness, and opened his eyes to the pitfalls into which
he would eventually fall, if he kept on the way he was going? In fact,
Colonel Boone had sounded the message of salvation, and Wright, Jr. had
accepted its graces, and before his father stood a righteous
transformation, to the honor and glory of Colonel A. G. Boone, the tried
and true friend of the Indian.

Again Judge Wright feels the sting of the serpent. He implored his son
to return to his parental roof, but this the boy declined to do, so
Judge Wright went at once to Colonel Boone and with many unjust and
unscrupulous epithets accused him of having alienated the affections of
his son. Colonel Boone had but to hear him out and bare his shoulders
for such other blows which Judge Wright sought to pelter him, and we
will hear with what blow he was driven from his post as Indian Agent.

       *       *       *       *       *

At the next session of congress, Congressman Wright sought to deal his
death blow to Colonel Boone, and to thus avenge the disloyalty of his
son to his father, at no matter what cost to his own honor and
integrity. This blow he dealt the rescuer of his son, from shame and
disgrace, and who but for Colonel Boone might never have succeeded in
being sober long enough to sell a pound of bacon. In Congress Judge
Wright accused Colonel Boone of disloyalty toward the Government,
declared that he was a secessionest, and that he was robbing the
Indians, etc., and so succeeded in having him removed. To this act might
fitly be applied the old adage: "Save a man from drowning and he will
arise to cut off your head."

After Colonel Boone was relieved by the new agent, Mr. Macauley, Majors
Waddell and Russell gave Colonel Boone a large ranch on the Arkansas
River, about fifteen miles East of Pueblo, Colorado, afterwards known as
Boonville. Waddell and Russell were the great government freight
contractors across the plains. This ranch consisted of 1,400 acres of
good land, fenced and cross fenced, having several fine buildings
thereon, and otherwise well improved.

In the fall of 1863, about fifty influential Indians of the various
tribes, visited at the home of Colonel Boone and begged him to return
and be their agent, stating that an uprising was imminent. Colonel Boone
told the Chief that the President of the United States had ejected him
and that the President would not let him do the thing they asked him.
Then the Indians offered to sell their ponies to raise the money for him
to go to Washington to intercede with the "Great Father," to tell him of
the "doin's" of their new agent, and to get reinstated himself. When
Boone told them that it was impossible, and for them to go back and
trust to the agent to do the right thing, they were greatly
disappointed.

Soon after Colonel Boone had installed himself in his new home on the
Arkansas River, he became the innocent victim of another man's wrath. A
certain Mr. Haynes was keeping the Stage Station and was not giving
satisfaction to the company, inasmuch as the mules seemed to be lacking
the care and attention the company thought due them. The corn sent by
the company (government) to feed the mules did not find its way to the
mule troughs. So the Stage Company began to negotiate with Colonel Boone
to take the station, and he took it.

This arrangement angered Mr. Haynes, and he reported to a Union Soldier
that Colonel Boone was a rebel of the deepest dye, and further said that
he had a company of Texas Rangers hidden, and intended to "clean out the
country." The Lieutenant to whom this deliberate falsehood was told,
sent fifteen soldiers to the home of A.G. Boone to confiscate his
property and to burn him out if they found indications that the
report was true.

Mr. Boone's residence was seven miles from Haynes' and the soldiers
reached Boone's place about 1:30 o'clock P.M. and their horses looked,
to a casual observer, like they had been ridden fifty miles. They were
all covered with dust which the crafty soldiers had thrown upon them and
were flecked with sweat. One soldier went forward and asked politely to
be given something to eat.

Colonel Boone who was a whole-hearted, "hail fellow well met" sort of a
man, invited them to come in and to put their horses in the barn and to
give them one really good feed, remarking at the same time that they had
better remove their saddles and allow the horses to cool off.

One soldier, without a first thought, began to throw his saddle off, but
was quickly prevented by a quicker witted soldier, but the action was
not quick enough. Colonel Boone had observed without appearing to do so,
the normal condition of the back of the horse, and something had flown
to his mind, that "all was not right on the Wabash," and he concluded to
keep cool. Something told him that they were agents of Mr. Haynes, and
were on mischief bent.

After caring well for the horses, the soldiers were invited to the house
where they went to the back porch and refreshed themselves with clean
cistern water and fresh towels. While they were getting "slicked up" as
some of the soldiers jokingly called their face wash, Colonel Boone
called the old negro woman to bring a pitcher of whiskey, glasses,
sugar, nutmeg, and eggs, and make them a rich toddy. When this was done,
Colonel Boone with a lavish hand distributed it generously among his
guests, after which they were escorted through the old-fashioned long
hall to the front porch where they rested and awaited the good dinner
already in progress for them.

Mrs. Boone was sick in bed, and one or two of the soldiers seeing some
one in bed, and more to find out who was there than anything else,
sauntered into the room and up to the bed. As soon as he saw he had made
a mistake, he quickly apologized and retreated to the front porch,
where, to cover his embarrassment, he asked how far it was to Haynes'.
Boone told him it was seven miles.

Fearing the soldiers would become restless by their prolonged wait for
dinner, Colonel Boone went into the house and told his two daughters,
Maggie and Mollie, to help the old negro lady get dinner, and to stay in
the dining room during the dinner hour and wait on the soldiers, and be
as pleasant as possible with them. He told the girls that he was afraid
the soldiers were messengers of mischief, sent there at the suggestion
of Mr. Haynes, but that he had not decided just what they intended to
do. It was the idea of Colonel Boone to make the whiskey draw the object
of this visit to him, from his guests, and some of the more talkative
ones had already begun to divulge their business. The Colonel decided to
leave them alone so they could consult with themselves, so busied
himself about the house making his visitors comfortable wherever he
could. He stopped in the living room and listened to the conversation
going on between the soldiers out on the porch, which conversation
sometimes developed into an argument about Mr. Haynes and the
Lieutenant, the full import of which he could not glean. Then he
returned to the porch, in a round-about way, brought up the subject of
distance, from his place to Haynes. He then said: "Mr. Haynes had an
ill-feeling toward me, and I have been told that he is circulating a
report that I am a rebel, and that he intends to do me bodily harm." One
soldier was in good condition then to talk--the toddy had done its work
well--and he said: "I gad, Colonel, you ah jes' about right----;" but he
could get no further. One soldier had closed his mouth, with the remark
to Colonel Boone, that some soldiers never knew what they were talking
about, when they had enjoyed a good glass of whiskey. The Colonel
laughed as though the subject was of no importance to him and strolled
out in the yard. Just then Mollie Boone appeared at the dining room door
with a cheery smile, beguiling as the flower in her hair was fragrant,
and with a "welcome, gentlemen, to the Boone home," in her comely face,
bade them all go in to dinner. At the dinner table wit and mirth flowed
as freely as did the water down the throats of those hungry boys
in blue.

When these boys had partaken of this bounty to their full satisfaction,
they thanked the pretty waitresses for the excellent dinner. The
daughters followed them from the dining room begging them to never pass
this way without coming in to see them, and promising to have a feast
prepared for them. They departed, the girls returning to the dining room
to peep behind curtains to watch the manly soldiers disappear around the
house, to the stables where their horses were still munching the hay,
caring nothing at all about returning to the station at Haynes'.

The next trip I made to Bent's Fort was made without a conductor on the
stage. One of the owners of the Stage Company, Mr. J.T. Barnum, said to
me: "Billy, you go through to Denver with the express and mail, and then
act as conductor back again to the Fort."

On my return trip, I came in contact with a company of soldiers camped
at Pueblo, Colorado. Several of the soldiers were at the Hotel at
Pueblo, and during our talk together, I asked one of the soldiers if he
knew a Sergeant by the name of Joe Graham. "Oh, yes," one man replied,
"he is down there in camp now." This soldier volunteered to bring him
to see me.

Mr. Graham's father was a Methodist preacher in Monterey, New York, when
Joe and I were small boys, and we greeted each other with warmth and
affection, and had a jolly time talking over the "old times" when we
were bare-footed school lads. Finally Joe asked me where I "was holding
forth and what I was doing?" I told him that I had been living with
Colonel Boone, driving the stage coach from there to Bent's Old Fort,
but this trip I was on my way from Denver acting as conductor of the
mail. Mr. Graham asked me how long I had been with Colonel Boone. I told
him I had been with him up to that time, about six months. "I
understand," said Mr. Graham, "that Mr. Boone is a rebel." I told him
that he was most emphatically mistaken, that Colonel Boone was one of
the strongest Union men I had ever known, and that he was as strong a
Unionist as ever lived. Then it was that I found out what mischief
Haynes had sent the soldiers to the home of Colonel Boone, to do.

Joe Graham told me that he was the Orderly Sergeant of the company that
had camped at Mr. Haynes, and Mr. Haynes had told the Lieutenant that
Colonel Boone was a rebel, and had a company of Texas Rangers camped
close to his premises for the purpose of making a raid on the Union
soldiers. Joe Graham stated that the Lieutenant had ordered him to take
some soldiers and go to the home of Colonel Boone, and if he found
things as Haynes had represented, to confiscate all his property, and to
burn all his buildings, but that the Lieutenant had cautioned them to be
careful and to ascertain if the story Haynes had told was true before
they began depredations.

When Old Joe had finished his recital, my "dander was up." "Joe," said
I, "will you give me an affidavit of these facts, with the statement of
Mr. Haynes to the Lieutenant?" He told me that he would be pleased to do
so. We went to the Stage Company's office where Dan Hayden, a Notary
Public in and for Pueblo, Colorado, drew up the statement and Sergeant
Graham verified it.

After thanking Mr. Graham for his kindness in this matter, I proceeded
to Bent's Fort, with what I considered good evidence of Mr. Haynes'
guilt. When I arrived at Bent's Fort, I had time to go from there to
Fort Lyons to meet the stage coming from the States, and I took this
affidavit with me to Major Anthony, the Commanding Officer of Fort
Lyons. Mr. Anthony told me that he had heard of some such talk as this,
coming from Mr. Haynes. He immediately sent two soldiers to Mr. Haynes'
and had him put under arrest and brought to the Fort. Mr. Haynes was
taken to Denver, Colorado, given a trial, convicted, and sentenced to
the penitentiary.



CHAPTER VIII.

Macauley and Lambert Spar; Macauley is Placed in Guard House and the
Indian Agency Reverts to Major Anthony.

A few weeks prior to the event last reported, the Indians reported to
Colonel Boone that their agent, Mr. Macauley, was doing them an
injustice. They declared to Colonel Boone that they had as much right to
take something to eat from their wagons and trains as Mr. Macauley had
to steal the goods sent there for them, and as long as they were being
dealt with fairly they would deal fairly in return. It was to that end
that Colonel Boone had perfected the treaty with them, and they were not
the aggressors. Satanta, the great chief of the Kiowas, represented the
Indians in this instance.

When this fact became known Mr. Macauley was placed in the guard house
at Fort Lyons for dishonesty with the Indians.

When Mr. Macauley found that the Indians were becoming hostile because
of his dishonesty, he went to the Stage Company's office at Fort Lyons
and proposed to Mr. Lambert to put up a large stone building on the
Stage Company's ground, for the purpose of storing goods. Mr. Lambert
began to sniff the air at once, he thought he had found a mouse, and he
said: "Mr. Macauley, I haven't the money to erect a building of that
kind now." Mr. Macauley told him that he would not have to furnish a
cent of money, that he, himself, would erect the building, but he wanted
it put up under Lambert's name. He told Lambert that he could get the
Government teamsters to haul the rock and put up the building, and it
wouldn't cost him anything to amount to anything, either. Mr. Lambert
told Mr. Macauley that he could not see the advisability of such a
building. "But," said Macauley, "there's so much condemned goods, such
as flour, meat and other groceries--the flour is wormy--and we can buy
them for nearly nothing, and could sell them for a big profit." He told
Lambert they could get rich enough to go East in a little while, and
live like Princes, such as they were, if shortness of means did not tie
them to the Western Plains. Soon their coffers would be filled to
overflowing, if they but planted the seeds of his cunning mind, they
would fructify with a harvest of plenty, and they would reap a rich
reward; for the goods that came in for the Indians were rapidly
accumulating, and at that time, there was already a heavy excess.

Finally after they had reached the front room of the Lambert home, and
the conversation had taken on a still more confidential turn, Mr.
Lambert wheeled on his guest, and in tones not meant to inspire the
greatest confidence, almost shouted to Macauley, these words: "Do you
mean to come here and make a proposition for me to build you a hiding
place to put your stolen Indian goods in, over my name and signature?
Now, sir, your proposition would place Bob Lambert in the guard house,
while you, the man who steals these goods--you have as much as said that
they were sent here for the Indians--you would go free." Bob Lambert was
a mad animal when he was mad, and on he went, thundering like a bull who
had suddenly beheld a red umbrella: "Macauley, you dog! the goods you
are withholding from these Indians are causing trouble along the whole
frontier, and it will amount to a bloody battle with these ignorant
people; but, I say to you, these Indians are not ignorant of the fact
that it is you who are stealing their stuff. Nevertheless, the whole
white tribe will suffer through your dishonesty. These Indians have a
right to protect their rights, but in so doing, they may do depredations
in the wrong place." Mr. Macauley tried several times to pacify Mr.
Lambert; to tell him that he had misinterpreted his proposition. He
wanted to explain himself further and more fully, but Mr. Lambert would
have none of it, and told him to get himself out of his house, away from
his premises, and to remain away.

While Mr. Macauley was hesitating, Mr. Lambert drew his pistol and with
one word, that sounded like a roar from a mighty lion, said, "Go!" Mr.
Macauley turned to leave, and Lambert yelled after him: "Run, you thief,
get up and hurry, or I will fill your legs full of lead;" and
Macauley did run.

At this time Major Anthony was the Commanding Officer of Fort Lyons. Mr.
Macauley ran to the Major's office, reaching there greatly excited and
in an almost exhausted condition, he demanded Major Anthony to put the
chains on Mr. Lambert, and to chain him to the floor. Major Anthony
asked him what the matter was. Mr. Macauley began what sounded like a
very plausible story of his encounter with Mr. Lambert.

When he stopped to catch his breath, he again ordered Major Anthony to
send at once for Lambert, and place him in the guard house for
threatening his life.

Major Anthony rang the bell; the sentinel came in. "Mr. Sentinel,"
ordered Major Anthony, "go at once to Mr. Lambert's and tell him I want
to see him, immediately." When the sentinel told Mr. Lambert his
mission, he prepared at once to go to the Major. While the sentinel was
gone for Mr. Lambert, Mr. Macauley attempted to leave the office of
Major Anthony before the return of the sentinel and Lambert, but Major
Anthony refused to permit his exit, though he had twice attempted to
leave before the arrival of Mr. Lambert. Mr. Macauley asked the Major
why he could not accept his given word, as correct. But impartial Major
Anthony assured him that to put a man in the guard house without a
hearing, would be unfair. He said he would give Mr. Lambert a trial. Mr.
Macauley grew furious, and told the Major that if he wanted to take
Lambert's word for this occurrence, instead of his, that he would go,
and he arose to leave the room, but Major Anthony restrained him. Major
Anthony said: "Now, Mr. Macauley, you sit down and cool off, and remain
seated, until the completion of this trial between yourself and Mr.
Lambert." At this juncture, Mr. Lambert and the sentinel appeared in the
doorway. Mr. Lambert advanced, with a salute, said: "At your service,
Major Anthony, what can I do for you?" Said Major Anthony: "You can tell
the cause of this disturbance between yourself and Mr. Macauley. Mr.
Macauley has already made his statement, and I want to hear what you
have to say." "Major," said Mr. Lambert, "will you not let Mr. Macauley
state the facts to you again, in my presence, regarding this affair?"
Mr. Lambert then drew his pistol out of his scabbard, laid it on the
table across from Mr. Macauley, and politely requested Major Anthony to
permit Macauley to tell him the exact truth of the matter in
controversy, beginning from the time he had entered his premises, with
his vile proposition, until the time of his hasty departure, from
his house.

Mr. Lambert turned to Macauley with a little quick, nervous jesture,
saying: "Macauley, you tell Major Anthony the truth, and if you mince
words, and do not tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
truth, I will kill you."

Mr. Macauley called on Major Anthony for protection, but the Major only
replied, that he saw no need for protection, that all he had to do was
to tell the truth in the matter, and that he would vouch for Mr.
Lambert's peaceableness. "Now," said Major Anthony, "you may proceed
with your story. The truth is your best trick, and I must get it off my
hands, be quick about it."

Mr. Macauley began the narrative with many a jerk and start, Major
Anthony was judge and jury, Mr. Lambert was a quiet spectator, but his
wonderful eyes kept the witness on the right track, until he had almost
completed his story and attempted to evade part of the conversation.
Lambert turned his commanding eyes upon the culprit, demanding that not
one iota of that proposition be left out of his recital. Brought to bay,
Macauley had nothing to do, but confess his crime and the proposition
made Mr. Lambert, but his nerve had broken loose and he was a whining,
puny puppy.

"Now, Mr. Lambert," said Major Anthony, "I am much obliged to you and
you can go to your quarters." Major Anthony again rang for the sentinel
and told him to bring the sergeant of the guard house to him.

When the sergeant came. Major Anthony turned to Macauley and told him
that he was dismissed from the post as agent of the Indian Supplies, and
he, himself, would have to be the commissioner until the government
appointed some one to supercede him. When the Major turned Macauley over
to the Sergeant, he told him to take the "thief" to the guard house and
to see to it that he did not escape.

A few days after this episode, Major Anthony notified the Indians to
come and receive their annuities, as far as possible, from the remains.
Then he gave the Indians to understand that it was the intention of the
government, that they be fairly dealt with, and follow the terms of the
treaty made by Colonel A.G. Boone.

That night the Indians had a big celebration, dancing, singing, yelling
and horse-racing, and signified that they now had a better feeling
toward the white race--that of brother--now that Major Anthony had
settled their grievances by removing Mr. Macauley from the commission.

Major Anthony reported Mr. Macauley's conduct to headquarters at
Leavenworth, and the Leavenworth authorities came after him, but through
the white-washing of some one, this reprobate went scot free.

After the Chivington Massacre on Sand Creek, the War Department was
greatly disturbed over the action of the Indians. Colonel Ford, who was
stationed at Fort Larned, was ordered to patrol the country on the
western boundary of Kansas and eastern Colorado, about half way between
the Arkansas River and the North Platte. He started out with 500 fully
equipped soldiers and proceeded about 350 miles to the northwest, and
without finding signs of Indians, he went into camp.

In the month of October, in the year of 1863, William Poole of
Independence, Missouri, pack master of a mule train, discovered a few
smokes circling their camp, and told Colonel Ford of his find. Mr. Ford
made light of it, but the First Lieutenant of one of the companies said
that he was going to take every precaution possible, to protect his
valuable horse, and that he would not let it go out to range with
the mules.

Mr. Poole tethered all his mules, that is, tied their forefeet about 18
inches apart, so they could walk around and graze, but not run, and
placed double guard over the animals.

At two o'clock in the morning, five Indians with Buffalo robes swinging
in the air, gave the war whoop and stampeded the soldiers of Colonel
Ford, and took every horse, but that belonging to the fastidious
Lieutenant. Every soldier nursed his "sore head" and had no consolation,
but to tell how slick those "red devils" relieved them of their horses.

When the horses were gone, the soldiers had no further use of their
saddles and blankets. Colonel Ford ordered them burned so the Indians
could not profit by them. However, this was an error on the part of the
Colonel, as will be seen. All the horses and saddles would have been
returned in due time. Three weeks after Ford's experience in the Indian
country, an old Indian and his squaw came riding into Fort Larned on two
of the horses, which they traded off for nuts, candy, sugar and more
candy, and were highly pleased over their exchange. They had no use for
the large horses because they could not stand the weather as well as
their Indian ponies. They grinningly told the storekeeper they would
return in "two moons" with more horses.



CHAPTER IX.

The Fort Riley Soldiers Go to Fort Larned to Horse Race With Cheyennes,
Comanches and Kiowas.

The Indians are great people for sport and amusement and it would be
difficult to imagine a more inveterate gambler. Their greatest ambition
is to excel in strength and endurance.

Several times as our coaches meandered across the plains, we came upon
the lodges of thousands of Indians, where the male population were
trying their skill at horse-racing. Even the small boys, many times as
many as fifteen or twenty, would be horse-racing and the chiefs would be
betting upon their favorites.

For their race tracks, they dug ditches about four feet apart and threw
up the sod and dirt between the ditches. The whole tribe then packed the
ground in the tracks hard and smooth by riding their horses up and down
those tracks to pack the dirt still more firmly. These tracks were
generally one and one-eighth miles long. The Indians would then select a
horse which they regarded as especially swift and banter the soldiers
for a horse race, which the soldiers were quick to accept, if they were
lucky enough to get a furlough. These Fort Riley soldiers always brought
their best horses to Fort Larned to race against the Indians'
race ponies.

Once during the summer of 1863 when there were only a few white people
at Fort Larned, the Indians, about 15,000 strong, commenced preparation
for a horse race between themselves and the Fort Riley soldiers.
Everything was completed and the Indian ponies were in good trim to beat
the soldiers. The Indians had placed their stakes consisting of ponies,
buffalo robes, deer skins, trinkets of all kinds and characters, in the
hands of their squaws. Then the Fort Riley soldiers came and the betting
was exciting in the extreme, the soldiers betting silver dollars against
their ponies, etc. The soldiers were victorious and highly pleased over
the winnings. The Indians handed the bets over manfully and without a
flinch, but one Indian afterward told me that they had certainly
expected to have been treated to at least a smoke or a drink of "fire
water;" but the soldiers rode away laughing and joking and promised the
Indians to return in "two moons," perhaps "three moons," in response to
their invitation. I was at this race and joined in the sport. Everything
was as pleasant as could be. There was no disturbance of any kind and
the soldiers took their "booty" and, as a matter of fact, did not even
invite the Indians to smoke a consolation pipe.

During the fall of 1863 a small band of Comanches and Kiowas went to
Texas and procured a white faced, white footed, tall, slim black
stallion for racing purposes. In elation they notified the Fort Riley
soldiers to come again. This time, not only did the Fort Riley soldiers
come, but citizens from all over the whole country for a distance of
from 300 to 500 miles came to see the fun. There were from twenty to
thirty thousand Indians there, and the Indians who invited them prepared
to take care of a large crowd in good style, so confident were they that
this time "the pot" would be theirs. They had hunted down, killed and
dressed some fifty or sixty buffalo, and had them cooking whole, in the
ground--barbecuing the meats. This time the putting up of the bets
before the races came off was still more exciting than at the previous
race, for the Indians had from 500 to 1,000 ponies to put up. The white
men matched their money against the ponies of the Indians. The race had
begun. As it proceeded, shouts of "Hooray, hooray," the Indians' black
stallion is ahead, 100 feet in advance of the soldiers' horse, he goes.
The race is won, and the black stallion stands erect and excited, proud
and defiant, and has won the laurel for his man, and seems to know that
the trophy is theirs. All had placed their bets in the hands of the
squaws for the spokesman, Little Ravin, the orator and regular dude of
the Arapahoes, gave the white people to understand that everything would
be safe in the hands of the squaws he had selected to hold stakes. These
squaws proved true to their trust. After the distribution of the
winnings, Little Ravin told the soldiers to stay and eat. Everybody grew
merry. The soldiers went to the government dining room there at Fort
Larned and got all the knives and forks they could rake and scrape
together and took them to the barbecue. When the Indians saw that the
white people had entered into the banquet with such enthusiasm and zest
they went to the settlers' store and bought two or three hundred dollars
worth of candies, canned goods of all kinds, crackers, etc., to make
their variety larger. They also bought 50 boxes of cigars with which to
treat the citizens and soldiers. When everything was in readiness for
the feast, the white men all stood up near the feast with a few of the
greatest chiefs of the several tribes, while the other Indians who were
not acting as waiters, to see that the choicest pieces of buffalo meat
were given their guests, stood in a ring back of the white guests, and
did not attempt to satisfy their hunger until after the whites had
demonstrated that they had feasted to the brim. This was one of the most
amusing incidents of my life on the frontier, and the Fort Riley boys
felt that in this treatment, they had been dealt a blow to their own
generosity, and one of the soldiers acting as spokesman, told the
Indians that they were ashamed of their own lack of hospitality when
they were the winners of the other race. This pleased the Indians
greatly, and they fell an easy victim to the duplicity of the soldiers
and made a contract to sell their black stallion racing horse to them
for the sum of $2,000, which sale was to be completed 60 days later if
the soldiers still wanted the purchase of the horse, at which time they
were to notify the Chief, and he was to bring or send him to Fort Riley.
This was a great sacrifice, but the ignorant Indian was not aware of it.
During the 60 days before the Indian brought the horse in and received
their money one soldier went up to St. Joe and sold this horse, so I
have been told for the sum of $10,000 in cash, but for the truth of this
statement I will not vouch.

It is a picturesque sight to watch the Indians move camp. Their trains
often covered several hundred acres of land. The Indians usually move in
a large body, or band. Their moving "van" consists of two long slim
poles placed on each side of a pony, made fast by means of straps tanned
by the squaws from buckskin and buffalo hides. About six or seven feet
from the ponies' heels are placed two crossbars about three or four feet
apart, connected by weaving willow brush from one crossbar to the other,
between these shafts, or poles, hitched to the pony. Upon this woven
space or "hold" are placed the household goods, the folded tents or
tepees, and lastly, their children and decrepit Indians.

It is not unusual to see several thousand of these strange vans moving
together, their trains being sometimes three or four miles in length.
Then their politeness might also be spoken of, for while it is true that
they have a traditional politeness, it is not a matter of history. Their
sledges were never in the public road but at least 10 to 20 rods outside
of the road in the sage brush and cactus, leaving the road free for the
Stage Company's mail coach.

In all the different books I have ever read, I have never seen one word
of praise for any courtesy the Indians gave us during those frontier
days, but instead I find nothing but abuse. The Indian is the only
natural born American and the only people to inhabit North America
before the discovery by Columbus. This land we so greatly love
rightfully belonged to the Red Man of the forest, and it is my opinion
that they had as much right to protect their own lands as do we in this
century. The novelists howl about the depredations committed by the
Indian, but their ravings are made more to sell their books and to
create animosity than for any good purposes.

The Eastern people eagerly read everything they found that abused the
Indians, and the Indians in those days had no presses in which to make
known their grievances. The only thing left was to get vengeance
wherever he found a white man. "To me belongeth vengeance and
recompense." Personally I blame the press for loss of life to both the
Indian and the white men, for having schooled the white man erroneously.
Travelers crossing the plains were always on the defensive, and ever
ready to commence war on any Indian who came within the radius of their
firearms. When I was a boy I read in my reader: "Lo, the cowardly
Indian." The picture above this sentence was that of an Indian in war
paint, holding his bow and arrow, ready to shoot a white man in
the back.

The novelists write many things of how Kit Carson shot the Indians. Kit
Carson was a personal friend of mine, and when I read snatches to him
from books making him a "heap big Indian killer," he always grew furious
and said it was a "damn lie," that he never had killed an Indian, and if
he had, that he could not have made the treaties with them that he had
made, and his scalp would have been the forfeit. At one time Kit Carson
went on an Indian raid with Colonel Willis down into Western Indian
Territory. He volunteered to go with Colonel Willis to protect him and
his soldiers, and at this very time Colonel Henry Inman tells of Kit
Carson being on the plains of the Santa Fe Trail, with a large company
of soldiers under his command, shooting Indians.

This is a mis-statement of Colonel Inman. Kit Carson never had a company
of soldiers, was not a military man, and at no time raided the Indians.
As will be seen in another chapter of this book, he was simply a scout
and protector for the soldiers. Like Dryden, however, "I have given my
opinion against the authority of two great men, but I hope without
offense to their memories." Kit Carson said that the Indian, as a
people, are just as brave as any people. Their warriors were not
expected to go out as soldiers with a commanding officer, but each was
to protect himself. That, in their opinion, was the only way to carry
on war.



CHAPTER X.

Major Carleton Orders Colonel Willis to Go Into Southwestern Indian
Territory and "Clean Out the Indians." Kit Carson Volunteers to Go With
Colonel Willis as Scout and Protector.

In June, 1865, two or three settlers coming from the border of the
Indian Country along the Texas and Arizona line, into Santa Fe, planned
to hunt and kill all the game on the reservation without consulting the
Indians. This occasioned trouble and one white man was killed. General
Carleton, in command of all the Southwestern country, stationed at Santa
Fe, heard about the killing, and without attempting to understand the
position the Indians held, or in any way to find out the cause of
trouble, sent an order to Colonel Willis, who was stationed at Fort
Union, to take his 300 California Volunteers to this reservation and to
"Clean out the Indians." His order was imperative. It did not say for
him to endeavor to find out the cause of the death of this white man,
but to go at once into their camp and to massacre, confiscate anything
of value, and have no mercy on the Redskins, who had slaughtered a white
man who was "only hunting" on the Indian reservation.

When Colonel Willis got this order he said to me that he knew absolutely
nothing about the Indian mode of warfare, and that he was fearful of
getting his soldiers all killed, and he wished that Kit Carson would go
with him, but that he would not ask him to do so because he knew that
Carson would disapprove of the orders he had from Colonel Carleton.

President Polk appointed Kit Carson to a second lieutenancy and his
official duty was to conduct the fifty soldiers under his command
through the country of the Comanches, but for some reason the Senate
refused to confirm the appointment, and he consequently had no
connection with the regular army.

When Colonel Willis had his soldiers all in trim and was about to leave
Fort Union, Kit Carson, who had been watching him from a nail keg upon
which he was sitting, came up to him and slapped Willis' horse on the
hip, saying: "Willis, I guess I had better go with you; if you go down
there alone, them red devils will never let you return." "Kit," said
Colonel Willis, "That is what I want you to do, and we will wait for
you." But Kit Carson needed no time to prepare, he threw his saddle on
and told Colonel Willis that he was ready without any delay. At about 10
o'clock in the forenoon the company left Fort Union, carrying one cannon
and plenty of ammunition. At about daybreak on their second day out,
they came upon a village of 100 or more tents camped on about the line
of New Mexico and Arizona. There were Kiowas, Comanches, Cheyennes,
Utes, Arapahoes and some Apaches in this village. Colonel Willis said to
Kit Carson that it was about time to "try their little canon," but Kit
Carson told Col. Willis "No." Kit asked Col. Willis to show him his
orders, which by the way he had not seen before volunteering to come
with Willis. When Carson read the order he was startled. It had never
occurred to him that a man of Col. Carleton's reputation would be so
unjust. Now said Kit Carson to Col. Willis, "Suppose we send out some
runners and bring the chiefs to us and see what occasioned all this
trouble that caused Gen. Carleton to give such orders." Col. Willis said
he had no such orders as that from Carleton, and the only thing he could
do was to "beard the lion in his den" because his orders were strict,
they said to go and kill the Indians wherever he found them and he would
be compelled to obey orders. The consultation between Col. Willis and
Brevet Kit Carson almost amounted to an argument. Kit Carson declared
that his orders should have read "in your discretion, etc.," and that it
was not advisable to take life in this manner, "but since you must obey
orders," Brevet Gen. Kit Carson said, "Fire away, if every mother's son
of you lose your scalp."

At daybreak Col. Willis' soldiers fired into the Indian camp, where
dwelt something like 1500 Indians, mostly old squaws and papooses with a
few able-bodied warriors. Few escaped with their lives and those who did
escape were entirely destitute for the soldiers set fire to their tents
after loading their wagons to the hilt with whatever they considered
might be of value, buffalo robes, moccasins, blankets and other assets,
together with all the provisions from the camp. There were several tons
of the latter--buffalo meat, antelope, venison, goat, bear and dried
jack rabbit. When Kit Carson found that all this provision was
confiscated he demanded that it be unloaded and left for the consumption
of the few remaining Indians scattered over the plains who were without
food or shelter.

After this raid they started for the Indian Territory and over into
Texas, hunting for more Indians. Kit Carson kept surveying the landscape
with a view to securing suitable places to fortify against the
formidable foe whom he knew might at any time steal upon them and ambush
them. Col. Willis had been watching him for several days and was totally
unable to make out from his deportment what he was looking for. When Kit
Carson told him that he was hunting for safe camping places Col. Willis
asked him if he thought they might be attacked. Kit Carson told him that
he knew that before many "moons" they would be surrounded by Indians,
and that they must begin their preparations for defense. Col. Willis was
unused to Indian signs, but Kit Carson knew them well. He had already
seen the Indian smokes. An Indian's telegraphic means were by smokes
placed at intervening points. These smokes denote place, number, etc.,
known to all Indians and "path-finders." Kit Carson with his field glass
inspecting the country had noticed these smokes and knew that a large
band was being called together. He informed Col. Willis that they must
travel back to a certain place he had selected, a stone ridge with a
spring gushing out of the side of a cliff. This was about 4 o'clock in
the afternoon. They reached the stone ridge about dusk. "Carson," said
Willis, "tell us what to do, I know nothing about fighting these wild
devils." Kit Carson told him to put his soldiers to piling stone and
make a breastwork to hide behind. He told Willis to send some of the
soldiers to the spring and build up a wall several feet all around it
and put some of the soldiers in there for protection and at the same
time have a place to get water. The soldiers had not a minute to lose.
The Indians bore down upon them and sent arrows into their midst, but
did no damage. Kit Carson told a soldier to put a hat on a pole and lift
it up, that he believed some Indians were hidden in a wild plum thicket
close by; if so, they would shoot at the hat. This hat trick was tried
several times. Kit Carson had located the Indians pretty well by this
time and told Col. Willis to set his cannon so it would shoot very low,
to barely miss the ground, and then he thought they would have a chance
to snatch a "piece of sleep" before daylight. When the cannon exploded
the Indians retreated, taking with them their dead and wounded and did
not come back any more that, night. An Indian will risk his life rather
than leave a dead member of his band in the white man's possession. It
is an old superstition that if a warrior loses his scalp he forfeits his
hope of ever reaching the "happy hunting ground." Col. Willis and Kit
Carson camped there until two o'clock in the morning when they went down
off of the stone ridge out onto the open prairie twenty miles distant,
where they again camped. After dark they again started out on the trail.
Indians hardly ever attack at night. Nevertheless, the Indians began to
congregate until they numbered several thousand and chased Col. Willis
and Kit Carson 300 miles. Under the clever management of Kit Carson's
Indian tricks Col. Willis and his soldiers all escaped without a loss of
a man or getting one injured. Kit Carson told me that he was "mighty
thankful that the gol-derned grass was too green to burn."

My Position in Reference to the Treatment of Indians.

It has been my endeavor in writing this book to relate incidents as they
actually occurred and of my own personal knowledge and observation. My
experience with the Indians and my observations with their natural
traits and characteristics convinces me that the white man has not, in
most instances, been willing to do him justice and has subjected him to
a great deal of unmerited abuse and persecution. The outbreaks by the
Indians in all instances that came under my observation were brought
about by the ill treatment of the whites. The Indians were always very
reluctant to avenge themselves upon the whites for the wrongs done them.

The Indians have been driven from their hunting grounds until many times
they were unable to secure food and were upon the verge of starvation.
Naturally, then, they would approach the wagons of the white men, go to
their settlements or follow the stage coaches and emigrant trains in the
hope of securing something to eat. The whites would often become
unnecessarily alarmed and attempt to frighten them away by killing one
or more of their number. As a result of this the Indians would be
aroused and take to the warpath and attempt to avenge the death of their
lost warrior by killing a white man wherever he chanced to find one.

I have known such instances as this to occur many times and had I not
exercised every care to avoid hostilities and establish peaceful
relations between myself and my passengers and the Indians I would no
doubt have met with a similar experience in some of my trips along the
Santa Fe Trail.



CHAPTER XI

W. H. Ryus Enters Second Contract With Stage Company, Messenger and
Conductor of the U. S. Mail and Express.

The spring of 1864 I left the services of the stage company and came to
Kansas City, Kansas, where my parents lived.

In June of that year I bought a team, mowing machine and wire hay rake
and entered into a contract to furnish hay to the government. I took my
hay-making apparatus out on the prairie, about ten miles from Kansas
City, and cut several hundred tons of hay which I sold to the government
quartermaster at Kansas City.

During the summer of that year Confederate General Price made his famous
raid through Westport, going South with his army, followed by the
Federal soldiers.

There were upwards of 3000 of the Federal militia, and while on the road
from Westport to Kansas City they became frightened and stampeded. They
heard that Price's army was coming toward them from Westport. It was an
exciting scene to see men acting like wild men.

The militia posted at Kansas City, Kansas, consisted of troops from the
counties of Brown, Atchison and Leavenworth and were under a newspaper
man's command, an editor from Hiawatha, Kansas, whose name I do not
recall. The governor of Kansas ordered this major to take his militia
and go to the line and protect Kansas City, Missouri, from Price's
raiders. The soldiers refused to go with their major in command.
However, they agreed to go to Missouri if their major would resign in
favor of Captain James Pope of Schuyler County New York, who was in
command of a militia of Kansas soldiers. This was done and Captain Pope
was made major and took charge of the several different companies
besides his own.

At about ten o'clock in the forenoon in the latter part of July the
militia then started to go over into Missouri after Gen. Price. I went
along with the militia, and as we were approaching Westport we caught
sight of several thousand stampeding soldiers, going as fast as their
legs would carry them.

I rode up alongside of Major Pope and said, "There's a stampede, see
them coming! I will make my horse jump the fence and run up to them and
tell them Price's army is coming the other way." Major Pope' replied,
"Go a-flying." He halted his troops and I rode through the fields toward
the stampeding soldiers, yelling to them and their officers that Price's
army was coming toward them from Kansas City. This checked them and gave
them a chance to collect their wits.

The officers of the stampeded troops then called to the soldiers, "The
rebels are coming this way, right-about-face." By the time the stampeded
troops were brought to a halt they were face to face with Major Pope's
regiment. Major Pope being an old soldier, understanding military
tactics, went to the south end of the stampeded troops, took charge of
them and commanded them to right-about-face and started south for
West-port on a double-quick time.

After the militia had gotten under way I put my horse under the dead run
and caught up with the Union soldiers who were in pursuit of Price's
army at Indian Creek, twenty miles from Westport.

As it was now growing late I thought best to return to Kansas City. On
my way back I again came in contact with Major Pope with the militia and
told him that it was impossible for them to catch up with Price's
raiders or the other Union forces, for they were going on the dead run.
I told him that he might just as well go into camp, which he did,
greatly to the relief of his almost exhausted troopers.

The next day Major Pope was ordered back to Kansas City to guard the
city in case the rebel soldiers should undertake to raid it.

       *       *       *       *       *

Dear reader, please accept my apologies for having left my original
subject and brought you back to the Civil war. Back to the Santa Fe
Trail for me.

When I got in home at Wyandotte, Kansas, now Kansas City, Kansas, a
messenger from the stage company was awaiting my arrival. He came to get
me to enter into a contract to again enter the services of the stage
company as conductor and messenger of the United States mail and express
from Kansas City across the long route to Santa Fe, New Mexico. I took
the position and started out the next morning.

My first noted passenger after I became conductor of this stage coach
was the son of old Colonel Leavenworth, for whom Leavenworth was named,
and who built the fort about the year of 1827.

After leaving Kansas City and getting settled down to traveling, Col.
Leavenworth Jr.'s first words to me were, "Have you been on the plains
among the Indians long?" I replied that I had been driving the mail
among them for three years. His next question was, "Do you know, or have
you ever heard of Satanta, the great chief of the Kiowas?" I told him
that I had seen him several times and had given him many a cup of coffee
with other provision. Col. Leavenworth Jr. seemed greatly pleased with
my answer and told me that he had a great affection for old Satanta and
that he was one of the nobles of his race, and also one of the best men
he had ever known regardless of race. Young Leavenworth delighted in
telling his exploits among the Indians and I was no poor listener, for
it always entertained me to hear some one give praise to my Indian
friends. Mr. Leavenworth told me that a great many of the different
tribes of Indians came to Fort Leavenworth to see his father and that he
had never had any trouble with them, however remote. At that time young
Leavenworth was a ten-year-old boy and a great favorite of Satanta, the
Kiowa chief. Leavenworth Jr. told me that he had gone on several hunting
trips with Satanta and be gone as long as two weeks away from his
father's fort. He told me that at one time when he had been away from
home two years at school in St. Louis that Satanta and his tribe were
there to welcome him home. The old chief wanted him to go on the prairie
with them to hunt the buffalo and be gone several weeks, so Leavenworth
Jr. told him that he would have to talk to his father about it.
Accordingly Satanta went to old Colonel Leavenworth and told him that he
wanted to take young Leavenworth on an extended hunting trip and might
go over into Colorado and other western states. The old colonel was
reluctant to let the child go with his strange friends and told Satanta
that if his tribe should become involved in trouble with the whites the
boy might be killed. Satanta said "no such ting." Santanta told the
father that no matter what war they got into they would protect the boy
and return him home safe and well. When Satanta's whole tribe came in
off the plains at the specified time they all entered into an agreement
to protect the boy at any sacrifice if he was permitted to accompany
them on the hunt. In their language they took the oath to protect the
boy, each one sworn in separately, and it was agreed that Satanta would
send two of his warriors to the nearest army post every week to tell his
father that the boy was all right. The boy always wrote brilliantly of
his travels in the wild western country. His father considered with much
pride reserved all these boyish letters which are masterpieces of
landscape and scenic description. Copies of these letters are still on
file in the war libraries and are set aside as "things of beauty."

Young Leavenworth in talking to me about his travels with Satanta told
me that they got into the mountains about thirty days after they left
Fort Leavenworth and located in about where Cripple Creek is now
located. He said the Indians found and gathered considerable gold. In
two places in particular the gold in the sands of the creek bed was very
rich. They gathered gold for him and put it in a buckskin sack. What
this gift amounted to in dollars and cents I have forgotten, but it
amounted to several hundred dollars. He was gone three months. That was
the last time he ever saw Satanta. He was sent East after that to a
military school. At the time he was crossing the trail with me he had
only recently become a colonel in the Union army and was ordered to Fort
Union to take charge of some New Mexico troops.

John Flournoy of Independence, Missouri, was one of the drivers on the
Long Route. When we were at Fort Larned, Colorado, Leavenworth inquired
of John if he knew where Satanta or any of his tribe were. John told him
they were on the Arkansas river not far from old Fort Dodge.

We stopped at Big Coon Creek to get our supper, that was twenty-two
miles from where the Indians camped. (We only cooked twice a day, supper
was about four o'clock, then we drove long after nightfall). After
starting on our journey about five o'clock, going over the hills down to
the Arkansas river, we came in sight of the Indian camp which was some
ten miles distant. At this camp there were perhaps thirty thousand
Indians. At about nine o'clock we were within three miles of their camp
and could hear distinctly the drums beating and Indians singing. Col.
Leavenworth said, "That is a war dance, now we must find out the cause
of the excitement." There were no roads into the camp and we couldn't
get the mules to venture any further on account of the scent of green
hides always around an Indian camp, so Col. Leavenworth Jr. and I got
off the coach and walked in as close as we consistently could. Soon we
saw an Indian boy and Col. Leavenworth asked him in Indian language what
was going on at the big camp. The boy told him that the Kiowas and the
Pawnees had been at war with each other and that two of the Kiowas had
been killed and one of the Pawnees. They had secured the scalp of the
Pawnee and had fastened it to a pole, one end of which was securely
planted in the ground, and were mourning around it for their own dead.
An Indian thinks he is shamefully disgraced if one of his tribe gets
scalped. They will go right to the very mouth of a cannon to save their
tribe of such disgrace. Col. Leavenworth says, "I tell you, Billie, I
was afraid that some of the whites had been disturbing the Indians, but
I knew if I could but get word to Satanta we would be safe." When the
boy told us how matters really stood our "hair lowered" and Col.
Leavenworth asked the boy to take us to Satanta's tent.

When we reached Satanta's tent the Indian boy went in and told him that
a white man wanted to see him. The old chief came out--we were about
twenty feet from the tent--he looked at Colonel Leavenworth first, then
at me, whom he recognized. He walked up to within a few feet of Colonel
Leavenworth, eyeing him sharply. Colonel Leavenworth spoke his name in
the Indian language. Satanta looked at him amazedly--he had not seen him
since he had developed into a man and could not realize that this was
the favored idol of his hunting trip through the Rocky mountains of
Colorado so many years ago. After this moment of surprise had subsided
Satanta gave one savage yell and leaped toward Leavenworth Jr. His
blanket fell off and he patted the cheek of the colonel, kissed him,
hugged him, embraced him again and again, then turned and took me by the
hand, grasping it firmly. He gave me a thrilling illustration of his joy
over the return of his old-time boy friend which impressed me with the
sincerity and true instinct of the Indian attachment for his friends.
Satanta called Col. Leavenworth "ma chessel."

[Illustration: "SATANTA."]



CHAPTER XII.

Billy Ryus and Col. Leavenworth Invade Camp Where There Are 30,000
Hostile Indians.

When Col. Leavenworth introduced Satanta to me he grinningly answered
"Si; all my people know this driver, for we have drank coffee with him
on the plains before this day." This was spoken in the Indian tongue and
interpreted by Col. Leavenworth.

Satanta immediately ordered some of his young warriors to go out and
herd our mules for the night--he told them to stake them where they
could get plenty of grass and put sufficient guard to protect them. I
told Satanta that we would want to start on our journey by daylight.

Leaving Col. Leavenworth with Satanta I returned to my two coaches two
and a half miles back, accompanied by about two hundred or more young
Indian lads and lassies. The drivers unhitched the mules from the
Concord coach and put the harness up on the front boot of the coach. One
of the Indian herders asked me if I had some lariats. I told him I did
and he got one and tied it to the end of the coach tongue, then put two
lariats on the tongues of each coach, leaving a string about sixty feet
long--much to the wonderment of the passengers--motioned for me to mount
the seat and take up my whip. When I did this all these young Indians,
both boys and girls, laughingly took hold of the lariats and started to
pull our coach into camp. This occasioned much mirth. This was a great
sight for the tender-foot. My passengers declared it excelled any
fiction they had ever read. The boys and girls pulling and pushing the
coaches went so fast that I had difficulty in keeping the little fellows
from being run over. I applied the brakes several times.

When we reached the camp the whole tribe began such screeching that many
passengers took the alarm again. Satanta came out, looking very erect
and soldierly, commanded the young men to haul our coach to the front of
his lodge so we could see all that was going on. Satanta's next order
was for the squaws to get supper. He said to the passengers, "We must
eat together, lots of buffalo meat and deer." After kindling their fire
of buffalo chips they soon had supper "a-going." I ordered my drivers to
take bread, coffee and canned goods from our mess box and we dined
heartily and substantially.

At eleven o'clock I laid down in the front of my coach and snatched a
little sleep. I doubt whether the passengers took any sleep. I know that
Col. Leavenworth and Satanta were talking at three o'clock in the
morning, at which time Satanta called out his cooks and informed us that
we must "eat again." We breakfasted together. Just at daybreak the
Indians gave the whoop and the little fellows were on hand to haul our
coaches outside the camp. They hitched our mules and Satanta and the
chiefs of the other tribes went with us about ten miles and stopped and
lunched again.

These chiefs begged Leavenworth to come back to their country and take
charge of the tribes, giving him as their belief that if he were in
charge there would be peace. Satanta called his attention to the battle
on the Nine Mile Ridge as well as to the massacre where they had
suffered so unmercifully.

Satanta told Col. Leavenworth during his ride with us that morning that
for the inconvenience suffered by the public the Indian was totally
blameless. At no time did his people make the first attack on the whites
and take their lives, but that in approaching their caravans and asking
for food they were shot down as they had been on the Nine Mile Ridge.
The American soldiers had burned their wigwams, slaughtered their
decrepit men, women and children and carried away their provision.
Satanta told Col. Leavenworth that he had heard of the newspapers, the
press, and so on. He told him that he knew that they were for the
purpose of prejudicing white people against his race. Satanta said that
the Indians desired peace as much as did the white man. Leavenworth told
the old chief that he regretted the loss of life, but Satanta told him
that his regret was no greater than his regret for both the Indians and
the whites. This ended the conversation between these two friends. After
many adieus they separated, each going his own way.

       *       *       *       *       *

On our journey to Fort Lyon I casually mentioned the name of Major
Anthony (nephew of Governor George T. Anthony, the sixth governor of
Kansas). I told him that Major Anthony was very friendly toward the
Indians. This is the same Major Anthony who took charge of the Indian
agency when Macaulley was discharged so unceremoniously. I told Col.
Leavenworth that Major Anthony had such a rare character that if he had
his way about it there would be no war.

Colonel Leavenworth Jr. asked me to introduce him to Major Anthony when
we reached Fort Lyon, which I did. Major Anthony asked me if I would
wait a couple of hours so he and Colonel Leavenworth could talk over
Indian matters a while before we proceeded to Bent's Old Fort, forty
miles south of Fort Lyon.

After we started on our route Colonel Leavenworth remarked about the
rains which had been falling. I told him I was afraid we would
experience some difficulty in crossing the Arkansas river. Sure enough
when we reached there the river was a seething mass of turbulent waters,
but we succeeded in crossing safely at Bent's Old Fort. Then we had
eighty miles to go before we struck the foothills of the Raton
mountains, fording the Picketwaire river at the little town of Trinidad,
Colorado, over the Raton mountains. In going up the mountain we crossed
the creek twenty-six times.

On this route was a place known to the train men as "The Devil's Gate."
This was a very large rock extending out over the road running close to
the creek with a precipice below. We had to use great care and
precaution in handling our mules around this rock to take the road. We
saw several broken wagons at this point where several freighters had
been doomed to bad luck.

We ascended the mountains to the foot where were the headwaters of the
Red river, four miles from the Red river station of the stage company,
thence to Fort Union, where I delivered Colonel Leavenworth. That was
the last time I ever saw him.



CHAPTER XIII.

A "Trifling Incident"--Billy Ryus Runs Risks With Government
Property.

Six months after my visit to the camp of Satanta a trifling incident
comes to my mind. Crossing Red river which was considerably swollen due
to the heavy thaws--the river at this point was only about nine feet
across and about two and a half feet deep--but it was a treacherous
place because it was so mirey. It stuck many freight wagons--I was in a
quandary just how I would cross it. After climbing down off of the
coach, looking around for an escape (?), a happy idea possessed me. I
was carrying four sacks of patent office books which would weigh about
240 pounds a sack, the sacks were eighteen inches square by four and a
half feet long, so I concluded to use these books to make an impromptu
bridge. I cut the ice open for twenty inches, wide enough to fit the
tracks of the coach for the wheels to run on, then placed four of these
sacks of books in the water and drove my mules across Red River. I was
fully aware that the books were government property, but from past
experience I knew they would never be put to use.

People all along the route were mad because the stage company charged
$200 for a passage from Kansas City to Santa Fe and knowing that we were
compelled to haul the government mail, heavy or light, in the way or out
of it, and desiring to "put us to it," kept ordering these books sent
them. They never took one of them from the postoffice, hence the
accumulation in the postoffice grew until there was room for little
else. These books were surveys and agricultural reports. Unreadable to
say the least, but heavy in the extreme. The postoffice at Santa Fe was
a little bit of a concern, and the postmaster said there was no room for
the books there. Earlier in the year I had carried one of these sacks to
the postoffice and had attempted to get the postmaster to accept them as
mail. I told him that it was mail and that I had no other place to
deposit it. Nevertheless he said he would not have them left at the
postoffice and told me do anything I wanted to with them, saying at the
time that people all around there had a mania for ordering those books,
but never intended to take them when they ordered them. I took the books
around to the stage station and discovered four wagonloads of the
"government stuff."

At the time I placed the books in Red river I knew that the postmaster
would not let them be left there and I knew they might serve the
government better in a "bridge" than otherwise. Knowing this I felt that
I had a remedy at law and grounds for defense.

The four passengers with me "jawed" me quite enough to "extract" the
patience of an ancient Job for having treated government property to a
watery burial in Red river. Two of the passengers were Mexicans and two
other men from New York. However, the two Mexicans soon disgusted the
other two passengers, who took sides with me. The Mexicans said they
would report me to the government, and I had no doubt they would.

As soon as I got to Santa Fe I went to see General Harney, ex-governor
of New Mexico. I told him what I had done and why I did it. General
Harney told me he was glad I had notified him right away and said he
would explain this transportation of the patent office books to the
fourth assistant postmaster. I gave him a detailed account of my
conversation regarding the disposition of the books to the postmaster
the trip before, which conversation he put in the form of an affidavit
and took it to the postmaster to verify. The postmaster refused to sign
the document, saying that he was no such a fool as that. General Harney
reported to the government who ordered the postmaster to rent a room in
which to store the government books now in possession of the stage
company. I knew that the postmaster was going to get these orders, so I
told Mr. Parker, proprietor of the hotel (called in those days the
"Fonda") that he could rent the room to the postmaster for $15 per
month. He would draw $45 per quarter and net the stage company $30. We
conductors made the drivers haul all the books over to the postoffice,
and when we had put all inside that we could get in there, obstructing
the light from the one solitary window, we put several thousand up on
top of the postoffice. Everybody was looking at us and everybody else
was laughing.

       *       *       *       *       *

In a squealy little old voice the postmaster came out and told us to
take them to "Parker's Fonda," that he had rented the room for the
storage of such trash. Thus it came that the books were placed back in
the same room in which they were formerly stored, but they were now
paying the stage company rent for "their berths" and continued three
years to net the stage company $10 per month.

This transaction caused the government to quit printing these books. The
governor sent directions to the Santa Fe Stage Company at Kansas City
that should more such books accumulate they might be delivered by
freight. There were no more sent.



CHAPTER XIV.

Tom Barnum Muses Over the Position the Government Will Take in Regard
to the Bed of Red River Being Suitable Resting Place for the
U.S. Mail.

After having deposited the patent office reports in their watery grave
in Red river I met and had an interview with Tom Barnum, one of the
owners of the stage line. "Billie, you devil," were his first words to
me, "been puttin' the mail in the river, be ye?" I answered, "Yes, sir."
"Well," Barnum said, "didn't you take some pretty risky chances when you
did this--are you sure you won't get us into some serious trouble?" I
told him that I believed that I had just saved his company not less than
$5000 by "dumping" that bulky trash. I told him that the company had
made complaints to the government about sending the reports into New
Mexico and that the Postmaster General had not given us the
consideration we deserved and the postmasters had also refused their
acceptance after we had "carted" them to destination. It's my firm
belief that in using the books in the manner I did they served the
United States better than they could have done any other way. I told Mr.
Barnum how ex-Governor Harney had befriended me in the matter and that I
felt safe to say that no bad effects could grow out of my conduct.

This pacified Tom Barnum and I told him that I wanted his company to
give me credit for half the money I had saved them on this book hauling
business on the day of settlement. I also told him that I had promised
to "deadhead" ex-Governor Harney and family (consisting at that time of
wife and one child, a daughter fifteen years old) to the states and when
they arrived in Kansas City, Missouri, he was to see that they got a
pass over the road to New York City. Barnum wheezed out a little laugh
and an exclamation that sounded like "h--l," but finished good naturedly
by telling me that he would do it. As our conversation lengthened he
said, "Billy, been thinking over this dead-headin' business of
yourn,--Billy," again said Mr. Barnum, "you're an accommodatin' devil. I
believe if the whole Santa Fe population would jump you for a 'free
ride' to Kansas City you would give it to 'em and our company would put
on extra stages for their benefit. It don't seem to make any difference
to you what the company's orders are, you do things to suit your own
little self, 'y bob!" Barnum went on musing, but I kept feeling of my
ground and found I was still on "terra firma." "Well," says I, "don't
forget all those little points on the day of settlement, especially what
I have saved on the book business in the way of 'cartage' and
'storage.'" I told him that I might want to feather a nest some time for
a nice little mate and cunning little birdies. This conversation took
place at Bent's Old Fort. My next conversation with him took place in
Santa Fe, New Mexico.



CHAPTER XV.

Tom Barnum Takes Smallpox. I Visit My Home. Dr. Hopkins Gets Broken
Window, a Quarter, and the Ill Will of the Stage Company.

During the year of 1863 I took a notion to "lay off" and go home on a
visit. Tom Barnum, one of the owners of the road, was at Santa Fe at
that time and was to be one of the passengers into Kansas City. I met
Mr. Barnum in the "fonda" and he told me he was sick, remarking that he
wished he would take the smallpox. I told him he would not want to have
it more than once. "Well," said he, "if I took the smallpox it would
either cure me of this blamed consumption or kill me." I told him that
he wasn't ready to "kick the bucket" yet, for the boys needed him in
Kansas City.

Mr. Barnum had been exposed to the smallpox but was not aware of it, so
we started to Kansas City. When we arrived in Kansas City we went to the
old Gillis hotel, the headquarters for all the stage company's
employees. When the doctor came he told him that he had the smallpox,
but that he need call no one's attention to it until he had given him
leave. The doctor fixed up a bed in the attic, tore a glass out of the
window and took every precaution to keep the pestilence from spreading
through the house. The doctor took Tom Barnum up in the attic, placed
plenty of water within his reach and put a negro to mind him. Then the
doctor went to the office and told Dr. Hopkins that Barnum had the
smallpox and was up in the attic. He said to the hotelkeeper that there
was no need of announcing it to the boarders, but Dr. Hopkins said he
would do it anyway, and for him to get Barnum out of the house and to a
hospital, that he would ruin him. That night Dr. Hopkins announced to
his guests that Barnum was there with the smallpox. Sixteen of his
boarders left "post haste," but the house filled up again before night
in spite of the smallpox sign. At that time, in the year of 1863, the
Gillis house run by Dr. Hopkins was the only large house in Kansas City
in use. There was a new building, the "Bravadere," up on the hill from
the levee, but it had not been furnished.

When Barnum got over the smallpox he took the bed out the window and
burned it, together with everything else in the room, and thoroughly
fumigated the premises.

With a face all scarred with smallpox he then went down to the office
and told the proprietor of the hotel what he had done with the
furniture, bedding, etc., that he had used while he was sick. He told
Dr. Hopkins that he wanted to pay him for the damage and asked him what
price he should pay for the furniture he had burned. Hopkins told him he
supposed $50 would cover it. Then he asked him how much he had damaged
his house. Hopkins again replied that he injured him about $50. "All
right," said Tom Barnum, "I'll pay it, but let me ask you how many
boarders left you when they heard I was sick in the attic with the
smallpox." Mr. Hopkins told him they all left. "So I understand, Mr.
Hopkins, but will you tell me how many came in before night--how many
empty beds did you have while I lay ill with smallpox?" Hopkins was
hedging, but he had to answer that all his beds were full; that he had
no room for more than came, but he said he felt sure that his house had
been injured at least $50. Finally Tom Barnum happened to think of the
window pane he had left out of his inventory of materials destroyed and
mentioned it. Greatly to Barnum's disgust Hopkins scratched his head and
replied that he guessed that a quarter would cover the damage to
the window.

When this conversation was over and Barnum had paid for all the
"smallpox damage" he said, "Now, Hopkins, figure up what our company
owes you; I want to pay it, too." "No," said Hopkins, "I haven't time
now, I always make out my bills the first of the month." "Well," said
Barnum, "you figure our bill up right now and do not include dinner for
any of us, for we are leaving you right now, and will never bring a
customer to this house again and never come here to get a passenger nor
any one's baggage. In fact, our teams will never come down the hill
again to this house, we're quittin'."

The smallpox had left old Barnum pretty weak physically, but had
evidently not weakened his will. He left Hopkins in the office figuring
up his account and he jumped a-straddle of a bare-backed mule and went
up on the hill and rented the new 40-room house, "The Bravadere," and
sub-rented enough rooms to pay the expenses of his company. He also got
a porter, bus and team and sent to the landing to meet every steam boat
to carry passengers and their baggage free of charge to his "new hotel"
on the hill. This new hotel got to be all the rage, and the old levee
hotel in the bottoms was doomed to be a "thing of the past." The old
Gillis hotel on the levee was bought in by the Peet Soap Factory. The
old "Bravadere" still stands in Kansas City, but boasts a new
brick front.

[Illustration: "UNCLE" DICK WOOTEN.]



CHAPTER XVI.

Uncle Dick Wooten Erects a Toll Gate. Major Pendelton Carries Cash in
Coach to Pay Troops.

In August of 1864 the scenery along the route from Kansas City,
Missouri, to Santa Fe, New Mexico, was grand. Kansas City at that time
was a very small place. Its inhabitants may have numbered two or three
thousand. Santa Fe with its narrow streets looking like alleys was built
mostly of doby (mud bricks). Crowded up against the mountains, at the
end of a little valley, through which runs a tributary to the Rio
Grande, boasted of healthful climate. Santa Fe had a public square in
the center, a house known as "the Palace." There were numerous gambling
houses there and these gambling houses were considered as respectable as
the merchants' store houses. The business of the place was considerable,
many of the merchants being wholesale dealers for the vast territory
tributary. In the money market there were no pennies,--nothing less than
five-cent pieces. The old palace about which I have called your
attention is an old land mark of Santa Fe and is to Santa Fe what "The
Alamo" is to Texas. The postoffice at that time was a small building,
14x24, with a partition in the center. It was one-story with a dirt
roof, as were all the houses of that old Spanish city at the time my
narrative opens.

On my first trip from Santa Fe to Kansas City in 1864 there was little
to note except that when I got up on the Raton mountain about thirty
miles from Trinidad, Colorado, Uncle Dick Wooten had a large force of
Mexicans building a toll road. Originally the road was almost
impassable. Saddle horses and pack mules could get over the narrow
rock-ribbed pass and around what was known as the "devil's gate," but it
was next to impossible for the stages and other caravans to get to
Trinidad. This was the natural highway to southwestern Colorado and
northwestern New Mexico. Uncle Dick was a man of considerable
forethought and it occurred to him that he might make some money if he
bought a few pounds of dynamite and blasted the rock at "the Devil's
Gate" and hewed out a good road, which, barring grades, should be as
good as the average turnpike. He expected of course to keep the roads in
good repair at his own expense and succeeded in getting the legislatures
of Colorado and New Mexico to grant him a charter covering the rights
and privileges of his projected toll road or turnpike.

In the spring of 1865 Uncle Tom built him a tolerably pretentious home
on the top of the mountains--the house on one side of the road and the
stables on the other and swung a gate across the road from the house to
the stables. I believe some historians say that Uncle Dick Wooten
continued to live at this place until the year of 1895, the date of his
death. But as to the veracity of this assertion I will not vouch.

The building of this road with great hillsides to cut out, ledges of
rock to blast out and to build dozens of bridges across the mountain
streams, difficult gradings, etc., was no easy task. Neither was it an
easy task to collect toll from all the travelers. People from the states
understood that they must pay toll for the privilege of traveling over a
road that had been built at the cost of time and money, but there were
other people who thought they should be as free to travel over Uncle
Dick's, well-graded roadway as they were to follow the "pig paths"
through the forest.

He had no trouble to collect tolls from the stage company, the military
authorities and American freighters, nor did he experience trouble with
the Indians who pass that way. However, the Indians who did not
understand the matter of toll generally seemed to see the consistency of
reimbursing the man who had made the road, and the chief of a band would
usually think it in order to make him a present of a buckskin or buffalo
hide or something of that sort. The Mexicans, however, held different
views. They were of course pleased with the road and liked to travel
over it, but that toll gate was as "a dash of cold water in their
faces." They called it Dick Wooten's highway robbery scheme.

After Uncle Dick's road was completed and the stage coaches began to
travel over it his house was turned into a stage station and you can
guess that Uncle Dick Wooten had many a stage story to relate to the
"tenderfoot" who chose his house to order a meal or sleep in his beds.

Kit Carson was one of the lifelong friends of Uncle Dick and two men for
whom I have great respect. They were both friends to the Indians and
both have told me that they would never kill an Indian. The Arapahoes
knew Uncle Dick Wooten as "Cut Hand" from the fact that he had two
fingers missing on his left hand. This tribe had a great veneration for
the keeper of the tollgate, and he was perfectly safe at any time in
their villages and camps. One of the dying chiefs made as a dying
request, that although the nation be at war with all the whites in the
world, his warriors were never to injure "Cut Hand," but to assist him
in whatever way they could if he needed them. Uncle Dick Wooten's
Christian name was "Richen Lacy Wooten" and lived at Independence,
Missouri, before venturing to the frontier.

Before I leave Uncle Dick to go on to another journey across the Old
Santa Fe Trail I will relate the story of the death of Espinosa--Don
Espinosa. The Mexican aristocracy are called "Dons," claiming descent
from the nobles of Cortez' army. We will see how cleverly Uncle Dick won
the reward of $1000 offered by the governor of Colorado for the life of
the bandit, dead or alive.

Espinosa living with his beautiful sister in his isolated farm house
among his vast herds of cattle, sheep, goats and other animals lived a
life of luxury. There was a government contractor living in his vicinity
buying beef cattle for the consumption of the soldiers. Espinosa came to
believe that he was losing beef steers and thought that the contractor
was getting them, and when this contractor was shot and killed by an
unknown at Fort Garland it was generally supposed that Espinosa had
murdered him.

I have heard there was a very rich American living at the home of
Espinosa and that he was enamored by the bewitching beauty of the
dark-eyed sister of Espinosa and they were engaged to be married. The
American had told Espinosa that he possessed considerable money, etc.,
and one night after the American had gone to bed he was awakened by a
man feeling under his pillow for the purpose of robbery, and shot at the
intruder, who was no other than the treacherous Espinosa. When Espinosa
found that he was "caught in the act" he killed the American with a
dirk. His sister cursed him for having killed her lover, the only child
of a rich New Englander. This deed is said to have stimulated in
Espanosi a desire to reap in the golden eagles faster and faster, so he
determined to become a bandit, a robber. Several Denver men met death
along near the home of the famous Espinosa and the governor accordingly
offered a reward of $1000 for his body, dead or alive.

After this reward was offered I was passing through Dick Wooten's toll
gate on my way to Santa Fe and one of my passengers had a copy of the
Denver Times in which he read of the reward out for Espinosa in the
presence of Uncle Dick. Uncle Dick fairly groaned with satisfaction and
made this reply, "I will get that man before many suns pass over
his head."

About two weeks later Wooten was hunting and he heard a shot ring out on
the air, and decided he would go in the direction of the shot and see
what was up. He got on his stomach with his rifle fixed so he could
shoot any hostile intruder and stealth-fully crawled up to within a few
yards of where he had discovered a small camp smoke. There he espied
Espinosa in company with a small twelve-year-old boy, ripping the hind
quarter out of a beef steer he had killed. Wooten kept watching and
crawling nearer--Espinosa unsuspicious of the watch of the old trapper,
prepared to cook his supper and had beef already over the fire cooking,
answering the many questions of the hungry lad near him, when Wooten,
getting a sight on him, sent out a shot that ended the life of the
fearless and revengeful Mexican bandit, the terror of the Mexican and
Colorado border, Espinosa.

The boy hid under a log, but after being assured by Wooten that he would
not be harmed came out and answered Uncle Dick Wooten's inquiries. The
child said he was a nephew of Espinosa. When asked what the notches on
the gun of the bandit denoted, he told him they denoted the number of
men killed by his uncle, for whose life he had paid the forfeit by his
own at the hands of Dick Wooten, the famous trapper of the Rocky
mountains and keeper of the toll-gate of the Santa Fe Trail.

Uncle Dick, a kind-hearted old fogie, in spite of the fact that he had
just killed a bandit, gently pacified the little lad and finished
cooking the supper. When it was all ready they both ate ravenously of
the beef, bread and coffee; then Uncle Dick cut off the head of Espinosa
and placed it in a gunny sack, took the rifle of the beheaded robber and
placed the little boy on his horse behind him and started for the
toll-gate; from there they went to Denver and collected the ransom.
Besides the $1000 reward for the potentate of the Rocky mountains which
Uncle Dick received, he was also the recipient of a very fine rifle,
mounted in gold and silver, and a small diamond. This rifle was said to
be worth $250. Uncle Dick showed the "fire-arm" to me and I considered
it a very beautiful instrument of its kind. Old Uncle Dick proudly
invited inspection of his beautiful "fire-arm," but woe to the man who
criticised its wonderful mechanism. I do not know of Espinosa's being on
the Santa Fe Trail but twice during my travels.

The drivers used to have lots of fun with the passengers and after we
left Trinidad they would solemnly warn the passengers to examine their
Winchesters and revolvers, that it was not unlikely that we would be
accosted by some of the gang of the Espinosa's robbers, and tell them
that the Texas Rangers would often hide in the mountains and extract
money and other valuables from the passengers crossing over to
the states.

Uncle Dick Wooten's wife was a Mexican and they had a very beautiful
daughter who married Brigham Young. However, this Brigham was not the
great Brigham of Utah and Salt Lake fame. He was only an employee of the
stage company in charge of the stage station at Iron Springs, about half
way between Bent's Old Fort and Trinidad. This station was situated in a
grove of pinyon trees and other fine timber and infested by mountain
bear. Sometimes if we were passing along in the night the mules would
smell the bear and become unmanageable.

       *       *       *       *       *

One time I had a passenger, Joe Cummins, a marshal of New Mexico, en
route to Washington to get extradition papers for a man who had run away
to Canada, Joe was as full of mischief as a "young mule." I had three
other passengers and Joe Cummins kept them laughing all the way into
Bent's Old Fort, the junction of the Denver road. There we were met by
Major Pendleton and his clerk. Major Pendleton was paymaster of the
Union army on their way to Fort Lyon, Fort Larned and Fort Zara to pay
off the soldiers. He rode with me to Fort Lyon and from there he either
had to go with me by stage or take a Government conveyance, i.e. the
militia, which would take him eight or ten days. He decided to go with
me if I would agree to wait for him until he paid off the soldiers at
Fort Lyon and get an escort of soldiers. He said he had $96,000. He gave
me his package containing the $96,000 to put in the company's safe. I
was busy with my coach at the time he handed me the package and I laid
it down by the front wheel. A few minutes later he discovered the
package on the ground by the wheel of the coach and picked it up and
told me he would like for me to take care of it. I told him I would
attend to it as soon as I got loaded--we were fitting up two coaches
with mail and baggage to cross the Long Route and I would soon be
loaded, and I laid the package down again. Pretty soon the major came
around and picked up the treasured package and quite sternly asked me,
"Are you going to take care of this?" The third time he entrusted it to
me, at which time I asked him to come to the office of the stage company
with me. When I got there I drew an express receipt, signed and handed
it to him, stating that it would take $400 to express it. By paying that
amount I told him that I would place it in the safe. "Oh!" he said, "the
government would not allow me to pay express." I handed it back to him
and told him that the government then would have to be responsible for
it, not the stage company. Then the major said he would order a strong
escort to go with us across the long route. I told him that if he rode
with me he would do nothing of the sort, that if an escort went with me
I was the man to order it, then they would be under me and travel with
the same speed I traveled. I told him if he ordered the escort he would
have to stay with them, so the major told me to "fire away." I went to
Major Anthony and told him that I thought twenty men would be
sufficient, but that the old paymaster wanted thirty-five men, so I
yielded to him in this, and with thirty-five soldiers we started. At
daylight the next morning I yelled "All aboard," and the lieutenant in
charge of the escort, who was a regular army officer, told his cook to
get breakfast. I told the lieutenant that we always made a drive of from
ten to fifteen miles before we breakfasted. He said he wouldn't do it,
that the regulations of the army were to make two drives a day and not
over thirty miles without food. The lieutenant said he wouldn't drive
the way I wanted him to and they would have breakfast before they
started. I told him "All right, stay and have your breakfast, I don't
object, but then go back to Fort Lyon." I did not need an escort unless
they complied with my orders. I had orders from my headquarters and they
were supposed to be at "my service" as escort of the mail and express.
Well, Major Pendelton was in a "pickle"--it was a predicament he did not
know how to get out of. He wanted to get through as soon as possible and
knew that if he went back with the Lieutenant, he would be delayed. He
thought he had too much money to be left with me without the escort. He
remembered Major Anthony's words to him before we left the fort. Major
Anthony had told him, "you are safe in Billy's coach, he never has
trouble with Indians." However, while Pendelton pondered, Joe Cummins
thought he would fix matters with the Lieutenant and took him to one
side and told him that he was under the orders of the conductor of the
Government Mail and Express, that I was in the service of the United
States Mail and that my orders would supercede any orders about
traveling. Mr. Cummings told him that I would make my 50 and 60 miles a
day and he would have to make his mules travel that fast, or go back.
"If you leave," Joe says, "Major Anthony will report you to headquarters
at Leavenworth." The Lieutenant finally decided to go, much to the
relief of Major Pendelton. After we had gotten straightened out and on
the road' once more, Joe Cummins thought that the fun had tamed down too
much, so he winked at me, then asked me, "Billy, where do those Texas
rangers hold out along this road, do ye know?" "Yes," I told him, "they
generally hold out right across the river in the hills, which afford
them such good hiding places where they can ambush without being
discovered." At this, Major Pendelton suddenly woke up, "what's that,
you fellers are talking about?" Joe, casually remarked that they were
discussing that band of robbers that lived on the route across the river
from us. He kept on until Major Pendelton was feeling "blue." When we
camped for breakfast--dinner as the Lieutenant called it. Cummings told
the paymaster many a bloody tale of the lawlessness of that trail, and
ended by telling him and his clerk that while I was getting breakfast
ready that they had better practice up on their marksmanship. The clerk
had a four-barreled little short pistol. The first time he shot at the
mark he struck the ground about four feet from it. The four barrels all
exploded at once. The paymaster jumped about six feet in the air,
thinking that we were surely attacked from the rear. Cummings was
tickled to death. He handed the paymaster his revolver, which was a
12-inch Colts, and told him to shoot toward the board. The paymaster
fired and missed the mark. "Well," Cummings said, "Billy, it's up to you
and me, if we are held up by the Texas rangers on this trip." "But,"
Cummings said, "the Major here is a first-class shot, but a little weak
in the knees." After we again resumed the road, the paymaster began to
feel a little easier, and a little like I should think a "donkey" would
feel. He knew now that Joe Cummins had been "prodding fun at him" and
had no defense. At Ft. Larned the next day, I accommodated the paymaster
by waiting four hours for him to pay off the troops. He asked me if we
had better take an escort, but I told him I was sure we had no use for
an escort since it was only a five hour trip to Ft. Zara, where Larned
City now stands. I told him that the last escort we would need would be
from Cow Creek and that we could get one from the commanding officer
there. When we reached Kansas City the paymaster took the steamboat to
Leavenworth and Joe Cummins went to Washington and made application for
extradition papers to go to Canada for a man who had done some damage in
New Mexico. Cummins told me that Lincoln told him to go on back home and
let the man in Canada alone, that the officers in New Mexico had all
they could attend to without another man.

Joe Cummings went back to Santa Fe with me and had many a laugh about
the old gentleman, meaning Major Pendelton, getting so "riled up" over a
possible encounter with Indians, Texas rangers, etc.



CHAPTER XVII.

The Cold Weather Pinches Passengers Going Across the Plains.

On one of my wintry trips across the plains, I took a passenger by the
name of Miller who was going to Santa Fe to buy wool for Mr.
Hammerslaugh. That was one of the most extreme cold winters I ever
experienced. When we reached the long route, that is from Ft. Larned a
distance of 240 miles to Ft. Lyon with no stations between, we took two
coaches if we had several passengers; however, this time I only had Mr.
Miller. The first night out I told him he had better sleep on the
ground, he would sleep warmer and be safer from the elements, but he
said he would freeze to death. I told him that by morning he would see
who had frozen if he slept in the coach. Well, he had lots of bedding,
buffalo robes, buffalo overshoes and blankets. This was in the month of
January and the weather was down below zero and still a "zeroin'," it
being at this time 20 below. Sixty-five miles from Ft. Lyon I opened the
curtains and asked him how he was faring, and he told me he was frozen
to the knees. At Pretty Encampment I opened the curtains again and told
him we had better put him in cold water and take the frost out of his
limbs. I told him I would cut a hole in the ice and put his feet in
there and he would get all right, but he would not hear to it, he said
he couldn't stand it. I insisted that it was the only plausible thing to
do. He said that if I would drive straight to Ft. Lyon as hard as I
could go that he would give me $100. I told him no, I could not do that,
it would kill the mules before we could get there. At four o'clock,
however, we arrived in Ft. Lyon with our frozen patient. We got a doctor
as soon as possible who doped his legs with oil and cotton and kept
him there.

On my next trip in the month of February, I took a lady passenger, a
Miss Withington, daughter of Charles Withington, who lived ten miles
east of Council Grove, Kansas. She wanted to go to Pueblo, Colorado. I
told her how dangerous it was at that time of the year, but she insisted
that she would make it all right, and as luck would have it, she did
make it. John McClennahan of Independence, Mo., was our driver. On this
trip as on the previous trip, at Pretty Encampment I opened the curtains
and asked Miss Withington how she was. She told me her feet were frozen.
"Well," I said, "Miss Withington, there is only one thing to do, and it
is a little rough." She asked me what it was. I told her that I would
cut a hole in the ice and put her feet in the river if she would consent
to it. She was a nervy little woman, and laughingly told me to "go at
it." I went ahead with blankets and the hatchet and cut a hole in the
ice, and the driver carried her and emersed her feet in water 15 inches
deep. She pluckily stood it without a flinch. Her feet were frozen quite
hard but after 30 minutes they were thawed and we took her back to the
coach where she ate a hearty breakfast and proceeded to Ft. Lyon. At
four o'clock we reached the fort. Miss Withington put on her shoes but
her feet were still too badly swollen to lace her shoes and tie them.
She walked into the station alone, and there lay Mr. Miller, the
passenger of a month ago, who had lost both his feet above the toe
joint. Miss Withington walked up to him and said, "you're a pretty bird,
my feet were frozen as badly as yours, but I 'took to the water' and I
have no doubt but I will be all right." She never suffered much
inconvenience, but Mr. Miller was a life-long cripple.

Miss Withington, whose name is Hayden now, visited in California in the
year of 1912, just prior to my visit there. I was indeed sorry not to
have met her again. I met her once since that memorable trip when she
suffered frozen feet, and they never troubled her afterwards.

I always slept on the ground and never suffered with cold. I had buffalo
robes and government blankets. So long as the wind could not get under
the covering and "raise them off" I was comfortable. When the wind was
high, I usually laid our harness over my bed. In case of snow storms, we
would often wake up under a blanket of soft snow, and raise up and poke
our arm through the snow to make an air hole, then go back to
sleep again.

The wolves would often prowl around our camp and help the mules eat
their corn. Several times I would look out from under my covering and
behold eight or ten wolves eating corn with the mules, and seldom would
ever go to bed without first putting out four or five quarts of corn for
the hungry wolves. One passenger whom I had en route to Santa Fe joked
me about feeding the wolves. He said that I had gotten so accustomed to
feed Indians that I thought to feed the wolves, too.

[Illustration: LUCIEN MAXWELL.]



CHAPTER XVIII.

Lucien Maxwell and Kit Carson Take Sheep to California. A Synopsis of
the Life of Mr. Maxwell, a Rich Ranchman.

Lucien B. Maxwell was a thoroughbred Northerner, having first opened his
eyes in Illinois. He came to New Mexico just prior to the acquisition of
the territory by the United States prior to the granting of the ranch
then known as the Beaubien Grant. He was in the employ as hunter and
trapper for the American Fur Company.

The ranch, known as the Beaubien Grant, was one of the most interesting
and picturesque ranches in all New Mexico and contained nearly two
million acres of ground, traversed by the Old Trail.

Lucien Maxwell married a daughter of Carlos Beaubien. Interested in this
large ranch with him was a Mr. Miranda. After the death of his
father-in-law Mr. Maxwell bought all the interest of Miranda and became
the largest land owner in the United States.

The arable acres of this large estate in the broad and fertile valleys
were farmed by native Mexicans. The system existing in the territory at
that time was the system of peonage. Lucien Maxwell was a good master,
however, and employed about five or six hundred men.

Maxwell's house was a veritable palace compared with the usual style and
architecture of that time and country. It was built on the old Southern
style, large and roomy. It was the hospitable mansion of the traveling
public, and I have never known or heard of Mr. Maxwell ever charging a
cent for a meal's victuals or a night's lodging under his roof. The
grant ran from the line of Colorado on the Raton mountains sixty miles
south and took in the little town of Maxwell on the Cimarron river. The
place is now known as Springer, New Mexico.

In the yard at the Maxwell Palace, as we will call his house, was an old
brass cannon, about which we may speak later on. He had a grist mill, a
sutler's store, wagon repair shop and a trading post for the Indians.

Besides his wife, a Mexican woman, Mr. Maxwell had a nice little girl
eight years old, whom he sent to St. Louis with some friends to go to
school and to learn how to become a "high-bred" lady. In the fall of
1864 on one of my trips to Santa Fe I met Miss Maxwell, then a young
lady about sixteen years old, and took her to her father's house in New
Mexico. As we were crossing the Long Route I asked her if she spoke the
Mexican language. She told me that she had forgotten every word of it.
Everything at the Maxwell ranch had on its holiday finery in
anticipation of the arrival of this young lady and Mrs. Maxwell came to
meet the coach that bore her beloved child. It was one of the most
touching incidents that ever came up in my life, before or since. The
mother reached the coach first and had the girl in her arms, crying and
laughing over her, talking the Mexican language to her, but the girl
never understood one word her mother was saying and the mother was at an
equal loss to know what the daughter spoke to her. At last Mr. Maxwell
greeted his daughter who had grown so much that he could hardly realize
that she was his little girl he had sent to the states to receive the
benefits of education and became at once interpreter between mother
and daughter.

One year later at Fort Union I met Miss Maxwell and talked with her. She
told me she had mastered the Mexican language and was a fine horsewoman.

In the year of 1853 Mr. Maxwell and Kit Carson, who was a favorite
friend of Mr. Maxwell and not an unfrequent visitor at his place, went
to California with a drove of sheep. They took the old Oregon trail by
way of Salt Lake, Utah, and arrived in California some four months
later, where they sold their sheep to the miners at a very large price.
As I remember the sum, I think it was in the neighborhood of $100,000.
They met ill luck on their return. They thought they could return
together without being approached by robbers. However, they had been
closely watched and their intentions were pretty well known to a bold
band of robbers then plying between the mines of California and New
Mexico. After they had reached the Old Oregon Trail they were held up
and robbed of all they carried. However, the robbers accommodated them
by giving back their horses, saddles and bridles and enough money for
them to make their return home.

During my travels across the plains I do not believe that for a distance
of forty-five miles I was ever out of sight of the herds--cattle,
horses, goats, sheep, etc.--belonging to Mr. Maxwell.

A few weeks after Maxwell and Kit Carson were robbed on the Old Oregon
Trail they got together two other herds of sheep and went again to
California, taking every precaution against the attack of robbers. This
time Kit Carson went the northern route and Lucien Maxwell took the
southern route, arriving in California about seven days apart. They
decided to be strangers during their sojourn in the California town.
Putting up at different camps they disposed of their sheep and made an
appointment to come together again something like a hundred miles
distant, going west toward the Pacific ocean. By these means they hoped
to elude the vigilant eye of robbers and did get home without trouble.

Mr. Maxwell was one of the most generous men I ever knew. His table was
daily set for at least thirty guests. Sometimes his guests were invited,
but usually they were those whose presence was forced upon him by reason
of his palatial residence, rightfully called the "Manor House," which
stood upon the plateau at the foot of the Rocky mountains. Our stage
coaches were frequently water bound at Maxwell's, and our passengers
were treated like old and valued friends of the host, who, by the way,
was fond of cards. Poker and seven-up were his favorite. However, he
seldom ever played cards with other than personal friends. He often
loaned money to his friends to "stake" with $500 or $1000 if needed.
Some of the rooms in Maxwell's house were furnished as lavishly as were
the homes of English noblemen, while other rooms were devoid of
everything except a table for card playing, chairs and pipe racks.

There was one room in Maxwell's house which might be called his "den,"
however not very applicable. This room had two fireplaces built
diagonally across opposite corners and contained a couple of tables,
chairs and an old bureau where Maxwell kept several thousand dollars in
an unlocked drawer. The doors of this room were never locked and most
every one who came to this house knew that Maxwell kept large sums of
money in the "bureau drawer," but no one ever thought of molesting it,
or if they did, never did it. A man once asked Mr. Maxwell if he
considered his unique depository very secure. His answer was, "God help
the man who attempted to rob me and I knew him!" In this room Maxwell
received his friends, transacted business, allowed the Indian chiefs to
sit by the fire or to sleep wrapped in blankets on the hard wood floor
or to interchange ideas in their sign language with his visitors who
would sit up all night through, fascinated by the Indian guests. If Kit
Carson happened to be at the Maxwell ranch his bed was always on the
floor of this very room and invariably had several Indian chiefs in the
room with him. The Indians loved Kit Carson and liked to see him victor
over the games at the card table.

Although Lucien Maxwell was a northerner, Mrs. Maxwell was a Mexican and
with all the Mexican etiquette presided over her house. The dining rooms
and kitchen were detached from the main house. One of the latter for the
male portion of their retinue and guests of that sex and another for the
women members. It was a rare thing to see a woman about the Maxwell
premises, though there were many. Occasionally one would hear the quick
rustle or get a hurried view of a petticoat (rebosa) as its wearer
appeared for an instant before an open door. The kitchen was presided
over by dark-faced maidens bossed by experienced old cronies. Women were
not allowed in the dining rooms during meal hours.

The dining tables were profuse with solid silver table-service. The
table cloths were of the finest woven flosses. At one time when I was
there Maxwell took me to the "loom shed" where he had two Indian women
at work on a blanket. The floss and silk the women had woven into the
blanket cost him $100 and the women had worked on it one year. It was
strictly waterproof. Water could not penetrate it in any way, shape,
form or fashion.

Maxwell was a great lover of horse-racing and liked to travel over the
country, his equipages comprising anything from a two-wheeled buck-board
to a fine coach and even down to our rambling Concord stages. He was a
reckless horseman and driver.

After the close of the war an English syndicate claiming to own a large
tract of land in southeastern New Mexico called the Rebosca redunda. He
came to see Mr. Maxwell and instituted a trade with him. Trading him the
"Rebosca Redunda" for his "Beaubien Grant," thereby swindling Mr.
Maxwell out of his fortune. After Mr. Maxwell moved to this place he
found he had bought a bad title and instituted a lawsuit in ejectment,
but was unsuccessful and died a poor man.

Once during the month of October in the year of 1864, while en route to
Kansas City from the old Mexican capitol, I stopped at Maxwell's ranch
for lunch.

Mr. Maxwell came out to where I was busy with the coach and told me he
wanted me to carry a little package of money to Kansas City for him and
deliver it to the Wells-Fargo Express Company to express to St. Louis.

I told him I would take it, but I said, "How much do you want me to
take?" He told me he wanted me to take $52,000. I told him the company
would not like for me to put it in the safe unless it was expressed, but
he said he didn't want to express it. "All right," I said, "unless we
are held up and robbed I will deliver the money to Wells-Fargo Express
Company." "Now," I said, "in what shape is the money?" He pointed to an
old black satchel sitting on a chair and said, "There is the wallet." I
told him to wait until I went into dinner with the passengers, then for
him to go out there and take the satchel and put it in the front boot,
then pull a mail sack or two up over it and on top of that throw my
blankets and buffalo robes which lay on the seat on top of the mail
sacks, then go away and let it alone. Do not let any one see you
do this.

Let me say that Maxwell's ranch was headquarters of the Ute agency which
was established a long time prior to my traveling through there. A
company of cavalry was detailed by the Government to camp there to
impress the plains tribes who roamed the Santa Fe Trail east of the
Raton range. The Ute tribe was very fond of Maxwell and looked up to him
as children look up to their father.

One old Indian watched Maxwell put the money in the boot of the stage,
and after he had left to obey my instructions this old Indian who would
have gone through the "firy furnace" for Lucien Maxwell, stood guard
over the stage. I did not know it at that time, but the Indian
afterwards asked me how I made it in? When I came back to the coach I
laid the buffalo robes to one side, then I laid the mail bags to one
side and put the "wallet" as Mr. Maxwell called the old black satchel,
right in the bottom of the boot and laid one mail bag by the side and
laid an old blanket over both these, then piled on the balance of the
mail bags and lastly my buffalo robes. I usually slept during the day
after I took this money. My driver did not even know I had it. At night
I slept right there under the driver's seat in the boot of the coach. At
night I rode, before we quit driving for our rest, on the seat of the
boot with my brace of pistols between me and the driver.

Within about three miles of Willow Springs, Kansas, a stage station,
twenty-five miles west of Council Grove, I discovered twenty-five horses
hitched to the rack. There was no retreat, so I had to drive right on
in. Just as we drove up twenty-five men came out of the settlers' store
and saloon and mounted.

One passenger on my coach was acquainted with every man of them. They
were, however, true to my suspicions, a band of the notorious Quantrell
gang, the very ones who had made the raid on Lawrence and killed so many
people after robbing them. My passenger walked up to the gang and said,
"Come on, boys, let's all have a drink before you go." They all returned
with my passenger and drank, but I told the driver I did not want to
leave the coach and for him to grease it and I would fool around about
that so as to dispel suspicion that I was guarding my coach. Before we
were through with the coach the men came back and in my presence asked
the passenger if he believed the coach was worth robbing. "No," he said,
"I have not seen a sign of money." I told the boys that it wasn't worth
robbing, that there was not more than $10 in the safe and that it was
mine. I told him I didn't have much of a haul in the safe, but I said,
"Here's the key, you can go through it if you want to and satisfy
yourself." I laughed and talked with the balance of the boys as if
nothing unusual was taking place. One of the gang took the little old
iron safe, which was about eighteen inches square and weighing about 150
to 200 pounds, and put it on the seat of the coach and unlocked it. I
had it literally stuffed full of way bills, letters and such other
plunder, together with a little wallet of mine containing $10. The
robber took out the ten dollars and held it up, saying, "Is this what
you referred to, conductor?" I told him that it was. "Well," says he, "I
will not take that, it is not tempting enough." I thanked the
accommodating robber in my nicest way for having left me money to buy a
few dinners with after I got to Kansas City, and they left us. I was
fairly bursting with satisfaction. No one on the stage knew that I had
saved the $52,000 of Lucien Maxwell's. However, boy like, just before we
rolled into Kansas City I told the passengers about the money.

When we at last had gained Kansas City one of the passengers told Mr.
Barnum about the escapade with the robbers and my success in maintaining
a "bold front" and the "gold dust." Mr. Barnum grunted and said, "Oh,
well, Billy is one of our conductors that is so stubborn that he has to
have everything his own way." Then, he added, "Did you say he gave his
safe keys to the robbers?" "Yes," the passenger said, "he did." Barnum
replied, "I'll be dogged." Then he told the passengers about my having
deposited the mail in the river to make a bridge so I could cross my
coach and eventually to "reach the other side."

When I returned from the express office where I had been to take the
money, in fulfilment of my promise to Mr. Maxwell, old Tom Barnum and my
passengers were still talking. Barnum approached me, saying, "Been up to
some more of your tricks, have you, Billy?" I told him I had been taking
"poker chips" to the express office, if that was what he meant. They all
had a good laugh; then Barnum requested me to show him the receipt I
gave Maxwell for the money. "Now, Billy," said Barnum, "you're a pretty
bird, you know we would not charge Maxwell a cent for express, for we
never paid him a cent for board or for feeding our mules--but never
mind,"--then he laughed, "oh, that receipt!"



CHAPTER XIX.

Kit Carson, My Friend.

Christopher Carson, known among his friends as simply Kit Carson, was a
Kentuckian by birth, having been born in December, 1809. Kentucky was at
the time of his birth an almost pathless wilderness, rich with game, and
along its river banks the grasses grew so luxuriant that it invited
settlers to settle there and build homes out of the trees which grew in
such profusion. Small gardens were cultivated where corn, beans, onions
and a few other vegetables were raised, but families subsisted, for the
most part, on game with which the forests abound, and the lakes and
rivers were alive with fish. Wild geese, ducks, turkeys, quail and
pigeons swept through the air with perfect freedom. Deer, antelope,
moose, beaver, wolves, catamount and even grizzly bear often visited the
scene of the settler's home, among whom was our friend, Kit Carson.

Kit Carson had no education. There were no schools to attend other than
the school of "trapping," and he became a trapper and Indian guide and
interpreter.

When Kit was a small boy his father moved, on foot, so history relates,
to Missouri. At the time of the move, however, there was no state or
even territory of Missouri. France had ceded to the United States the
unexplored regions which were in 1800 called Upper Louisiana.

Kit's father had a few white friends, trappers and hunters, but the
Indians were numerous. Mr. Carson, together with the other white
families, banded themselves together and built a large log house, so
fashioned as to be both a house and a fort if occasion demanded them to
fortify against a possible foe. The building was one story high, having
port holes through which the muzzles of rifles could be thrust. As
additional precaution they built palisades around the house. This house
was built in what is now Howard County, Missouri, north of the Missouri
river. Christopher Carson at fifteen years of age had never been to
school a day, but he was "one of the Four Hundred" equal to any man in
his district. He was a fine marksman, excellent horseman, of strong
character and sound judgment. His disposition was quiet, amiable and
gentle. One of those boys who did things without boasting and did
everything the best he could.

At about this stage of his life his father put him out as an apprentice
to learn a trade. The trade he was to learn was that of "saddler."
However, the boy languished under the confinement and did not take to
the business. He was a hunter and trapper by training and nothing else
would satisfy his nature.

One night about two years later when Kit was a young man eighteen years
old a man who chanced to pass his father's humble home related his
adventures. He told how much was to be earned by selling buffalo robes,
buckskins, etc., at Santa Fe, New Mexico. He drew beautiful word
pictures of wealth that could be attained in the great Spanish capital
of New Mexico, more than a thousand miles from Missouri.

At last several able-bodied men decided to equip some pack mules and go
to the great bonanza. They intended to live on game which they would
shoot on the way. Kit heard of the party and applied to them to let him
accompany them. They were not only glad of his offer to go, but
considered they had a great need for him because he was so "handy" among
the Indians. It turned out that Kit engineered the whole party. He had a
military demeanor. When the mules were brought up and their packs
fastened upon their backs, which operation required both skill and
labor, it was Kit who ordered the march, which was conducted with more
than ordinary military precision.

Kit Carson was a beloved friend of several tribes of Indians. He learned
from them how to make his clothes, which he considered were of much more
artistic taste and style and more becoming than the, tightly fitting
store suits of a "Broadway dude" he had once "gazed upon." This suit
that he was so proud of consisted of a hunting shirt of soft, pliable
deer skin, ornamented with long fringes of buckskin dyed a bright
vermillion or copperas. The trousers were made of the same material and
ornamented with the same kind of fringes and porcupine quills of various
colors. His cap was made of fur which could entirely cover his head,
with "port holes" for his eyes and nose and mouth. The mouth must be
free to hold his clay pipe filled with tobacco. It is needless to say
that he wore moccasins upon his feet, beautified with many
colored beads.

Prior to the year of 1860 I was not personally acquainted with Kit
Carson, but after that year I knew him well. At Fort Union he was the
center of attraction from the first of April, 1865, until April 1st,
1866. Every one wanted to hear Kit tell of exploits he had been in, and
he could tell a story well. Kit loved to play cards and while he was as
honest as the day was long he was usually a winner. He didn't like to
put up much money. If he didn't have a good hand he would lay down.

Early in the spring of 1865 Carson went with Captain Willis to the
border of the Indian country along the lines of Texas and Arizona in
southwestern New Mexico. This massacre is fully explained on another
page of this book.

Kit Carson, like Col. A.G. Boone, dealt honestly with the Indians, and
Kit Carson had on several occasions told me that had Colonel A. G. Boone
remained the Indian agent, if he had not been withdrawn by the
government, the great war with the Indians would never have occurred.

Kit Carson was a born leader of men and was known from Missouri to Santa
Fe--he was one of the most widely known men on the frontier.

Carson was the father of seven children. He was at the time of his
death, his wife having crossed over the river in April, 1868. His
disease was aneurism of the aorta. A tumor pressing on the
pneumo-gastric nerves and trachea caused such frequent spasms of the
bronchial tubes, which were exceedingly distressing. Death took place at
4:25 p. m. May 23, 1868. His last words were addressed to his faithful
doctor, H. R. Tilton, assistant surgeon of the United States army, and
were "Compadre adois" (dear friend, good bye). In his will he left
property to the value of $7,000 to his children. Kit Carson's first wife
was an Indian Cheyenne girl of unusual intelligence and beauty. They had
one girl child. After her birth the mother only lived a short time. This
child was tenderly reared by Kit until she reached eight years, when he
took her to St. Louis and liberally provided for all her wants. She
received as good an education as St. Louis could afford and was
introduced to the refining influences of polished society. She married a
Californian and removed with him to his native state.

The Indians of today are possessed with the same ambitions as the
whites. There are Indian lawyers, Indian doctors, Indian school teachers
and other educators, but in the frontier days when from Leavenworth,
Kansas, to Santa Fe the plains were thronged with Indians they were
looked upon as uncivilized and were uncivilized, but were so badly
abused, run out of their homes and were given no chances to become
civilized or to learn any arts.

The Indians around Maxwell's ranch were mostly a lazy crowd because they
had nothing to do. Maxwell fed them, gave them some work, gave the
squaws considerable work--they wove blankets with a skill that cannot be
surpassed by artists of today. Not only were these Indian women fine
weavers, but they worked unceasingly on fine buckskin (they tanned their
own hides), garments, beading them, embroidering them, working all kinds
of profiles such as the profile of an Indian chief or brave, animals of
all kinds were beaded or embroidered into the clothes they made for the
chiefs of their tribes. These suits were often sold to foreigners to
take east as a souvenir and they would sell them for the small sum of
$200 to $300. Those Indian women would braid fine bridle reins of white,
black and sorrel horse hair for their chiefs and for sale to the white
men. The Indian squaws were always busy but liked to see a horse race as
well as their superior--their chief. A squaw is an excellent mother.
While she cannot be classed as indulgent she certainly desires to train
her child to endure hardships if they are called upon to endure them.
She trains the little papoose to take to the cold water, not for the
cleansing qualities, but for the "hardiness" she thinks it gives him.

[Illustration]



CHAPTER XX.

General Carleton Received Orders from Mr. Moore to Send Soldiers' Pay
Envelopes to Him.

In March of 1865 I made my last trip across the renowned Santa Fe Trail
from Kansas City, Missouri, to Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Somewhere on the route between Las Vegas, New Mexico, and Fort Union I
met a Mr. Moore of the firm of Moore, Mitchel & Co. This firm owned a
"sutler's store" at Tecolote, Fort Bliss and Fort Union. The store at
Fort Union was the general supply station for the other named stores.
The stock carried at the supply store amounted to something like
$350,000 to $500,000. This stock consisted of general merchandise. It
was to this store one went to buy coffee, sugar, soda, tobacco and
bacon, calico, domestic, linsey, jeans, leather and gingham, officers'
clothing, tin buckets, wooden tubs, coffee pots, iron "skillets-and
leds," iron ovens, crowbars, shovels, plows, and harness. To this store
the settlers came to buy molasses, quinine, oil and turpentine,
vermillion and indigo blue. Everything used was kept in this one store.
During those times there were no drug stores, shoes stores, dry goods
stores, etc., but everything was combined in one large store. Calico was
sold for $1 per yard, common bleached muslin sold for $2 a yard,
domestic was from $1 to $1.50 and $2 per yard. Sugar sold for 75 cents
to $1 per pound. Coffee brought about the same. Tobacco and cheap pipes
brought stunning prices.

Mr. Moore rode on with us for an hour or two, then he asked me quite
suddenly, "Aren't you Billy Ryus?" I told him I usually answered to that
name. Then he asked me if I was acquainted with John Flournoy of
Independence, Missouri. I answered, "Yes, we drove the stage over the
Long Route together for six months." Then Mr. Moore said that he wanted
to take me to one side and have a talk with me. Reader, you are well
aware that some men are born to rule--Mr. Moore was one of those men. He
never knew anything superior to his wishes. "What he said went" with the
procession. He even went so far as to order General Carleton, commanding
officer of the troops in that portion of the country, to make the
payment to the soldiers and mechanics at Fort Union through him and let
him pay off the soldiers. These payments would run up to $65,000 or
$75,000 per quarter. Up to the time of his meeting with me no one had
dared to thwart his wishes.

At his request I walked out a piece from the coach with him, and he
said, "Billy Ryus, I have been on the lookout for you for a year!" I was
astonished, and asked him what he had been looking for me for. His
answer was that he wanted me to stop at Ft. Union on my way back from
Santa Fe and go up to their store and clerk for them. I answered, "Mr.
Moore, that is practically impossible; I can't do it." Then he said,
"you've got to do it, I've spent too much time looking for you already,
you've got to clerk for us." I am a little hot headed myself, and I
answered him as tartly as he spoke to me. "Mr. Moore," says I, "I've got
to do nothing of the sort." Then Mr. Moore cooled down and talked more
like a business man and less like a bully.

"Now, Mr. Ryus," (I was young then and quickly noticed the Mr. Ryus)
"this is our proposition: We will give you $1000 a year, board, and room
and you can have your clothes at cost. And," he said, "I'll make you a
check right here." I told him that his proposition did not make a bit of
difference to me, for I was working for Mr. Barnum and could not leave
his employ without first giving him thirty days' notice to get a man in
my place. Mr. Moore was quick to respond, "Ah, let that job be
da--ed"--. This side of Mr. Moore's character did not suit me, and I
asked him what he would think of Mr. Barnum if he should stop over at
his store and take one of his employees off without giving him a chance
to get another in his place, and what would he think of the clerk that
would do him that way. I told him that I would not do him that way. Mr.
Moore said that he saw that I was "squeally" but that he saw my point,
and supposed I was right. "Now, Mr. Moore," I said, "when I get into
Santa Fe, if Mr. Barnum is there I will tell him about your proposition,
and if he can let me off now, and will take the stage back to the States
for me, I will take your proposition." He replied, "Well, that's all
right, you come back to us, if you don't get here for sixty days, and we
will pay your expenses here."

Mr. Moore put the spurs to his horse and galloped out of sight. What my
impression was of Mr. Moore could hardly be expressed. I certainly had
not the slightest feeling of awe--that one of the passengers said he
felt for the man, but I do not know whether or not I felt any great
confidence in him. However, when I came to know him, as I did by being
in his society every day for a year, I found him to be a man of many
sterling qualities.

Mr. Barnum returned with me from Santa Fe to Ft. Union and went up to
the store with me. Mr. Barnum told me that he regretted that I wanted to
leave his employ, but that if it was to my benefit, he would have to
take the coach in for me and get a man in my place, "but," he added, "I
do not think I will be able to find a man who can make peace with the
Indians, as you have always done." Mr. Barnum told Mr. Moore that he had
never lost a life since I had been doing the driving, and that I had not
only saved the lives of passengers, but that I had saved him money
and time.

When Mr. Barnum prepared to leave the store, he had the coach driven up
and my things taken off and put in the store, then he turned to me and
held out his hand, saying, "Billy, in making the treaties with the
Indians, such as you have, you have not only saved the lives of many
passengers and won the title of the second William Penn, but you have
endeared yourself to me and to the other boys in this company, and to
all the settlers between Kansas City and Santa Fe." I was greatly
agitated and impressed by his impressive speech, and I thanked him for
his kind words of praise for the services I had given in my small way.

The morning after Mr. Barnum left, I was feeling a little lonely among
my new surroundings, and Kit Carson sauntered into the room. As soon as
I looked into his kindly eyes I knew I had met a friend, and I also knew
in a moment that it was Kit Carson, of whose fame as an Indian fighter I
had often read.

I told him that I had heard many tragic tales of his wonderful heroism
among the unfriendly Indians, and he told me that I had heard many a
"da--er lie," too, he reckoned. He never killed an Indian in cold blood
in his life. He told me that if the Indians had not been trespassed
upon, that the great Indian wars would not have become a thing
of history.

The enormous trade at the "sutler's store" kept us four counter jumpers
continually on the jump for a year. There was no five cent picture shows
to keep the clerks out with their girls there, and the only amusement we
had was to either play cards or billiards, or to sit around and watch
Kit Carson and the boss play. Kit was a fine card player and seldom ever
lost a game, but he would not put up very much. To see him play
billiards was one sport, every time he hit a ball, he would kick his
foot up and say, "A boys, ay."

This store of Moore's was built like a fort. The walls a 150-foot square
and built of brick. Every thing in New Fort Union was of brick. It was a
two story concern with a rotunda or plaza in the center. Here the wagons
drove in to unload and reload. The front of the store was near the big
gate. It had a safe room, an office and the store room proper.

One trip per year was made to Kansas City with large mule trains to get
goods to stock these three stores. These trips were sometimes full of
suffering and hardships. Many a freighter left his wife and babies never
to return to them more. They were often killed by Indians who had come
to their trains to get food, but were repulsed by the poor policy of the
wagon bosses who have often ordered the ox drivers to "pull down on the
red devils" and so start trouble, which was often disastrous for the
whites, in view of the fact that the Indians on those plains were
numerous while the white men were few and straggling.

Sometimes the old Indian squaws would come to the store to buy sugar,
candy, nuts, tobacco or coffee. She would come riding in on her pony as
slowly as her quick footed pony would carry her, greatly interested in
all her eyes beheld. She was greatly attracted by the bright colors of
the calicos and I have often made treaties with the Indians by offering
their squaws some bits of bright ribbon or calico.

The Mexican women were very fond of bright colors. Their dresses did not
amount to much. They wore a short skirt and rebosa. Their head-dress
covered their hair and came together in front under the chin and hung to
the belt. What dress she wore must be very bright and gaudy and I have
known a pretty Mexican girl with about $2.50 worth of dress on come in
and purchase an $8.00 pair of shoes. If she wanted an extra nice pair of
shoes she said she wanted a pair of shoes "made out of Spanish leather."
Such a pair as would look nice on the dancing floors at their
fandangoes. The serapa takes the place of the American woman's bonnet.

In 1866 when the war was coming to an end, trade began to get dull. I
had been wanting to get out of the store and "try my wings" at something
else. When I began to cast my eyes about for something different from
the routine of store work, I met a certain Mr. Joe Dillon, who offered
me the opportunity I was seeking.



CHAPTER XXI.

Joe Dillon and I Go to Montana With Sheep.

Along about the 15th of March, Joe Dillon, who had been a quartermaster
in the Union army, left the army at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, the
possessor of $60,000 and a mule train of fifteen wagons, which he had
obtained some way or other, the Devil knows how. He was a peculiar man
and totally unable to keep a man in his employ. He was abusive, bossy
and altogether uncongenial.

With his train loaded with goods which he got in Kansas City and
Independence, he started with a wagon boss and several men across the
Old Trail to New Mexico, early in the spring of '65, but he had so many
altercations with his teamsters--some quit him, others would do as they
pleased, and altogether he had such a bad time of it that he did not
arrive at Maxwell's ranch until after the snow fell the
following winter.

Every wagon that passed him brought news of Joe Dillon's troubles to the
fort. When Mr. Dillon came to me in the spring of 1866, I knew him
pretty well by reputation. He approached me and told me that he had
bought 4000 sheep from Lucien Maxwell and wanted to get me to go with
him to Montana to take them. I told him I would like to go, but that I
did not know whether I could get away or not. I would see Mr. Moore.

"Alright," he said. "I think I will see Mr. Moore, and tell him I want
you to go and boss my crew." I replied that he must do nothing of the
sort, for if he did, Mr. Moore would not let me off willingly. I
explained to him that if I went to Mr. Moore and told him I wanted off,
and gave him a plausible reason, he would let me off without hesitation.
However, Mr. Dillon thought he had about made a "deal" with me and he
went into the office, and told Mr. Moore that he had "hired your clerk"
to go to Montana with his sheep. Mr. Moore told him that "he
guessed not."

Dillon had agreed with me that he would say nothing to Mr. Moore. So he
came to me in the morning of the day after he first spoke to me about
the deal and said, "Moore said you couldn't go." I was hot all over in a
second. "Mr. Dillon, you agreed not to speak to Mr. Moore about this
matter--it was a matter between he and I, and since your word cannot be
depended upon, our business relations cease right here." I considered
his management bad and his word in honor, worse. Mr. Dillon returned to
Maxwell's ranch and I continued in the store.

Finally, Mr. Moore approached me on the subject. "Billy," said he,
"thought you were going with Dillon to Montana with his sheep" I then
told him how it came about that I had told Dillon I would speak to him
about it first. We had made no contract, for without first getting Mr.
Moore's consent I would not make any contract with Dillon.

Now I could readily see that trade had fallen off and I knew that some
of the boys would have to quit and seek other employment. There was one
man there with a large family in the states who received a salary of
$1500 a year. I knew that he did not want to be thrown out of a job, and
I was eager to "try some new experience." So I told Mr. Moore that I had
heard from one of Maxwell's clerks that Dillon did still want me to go
with the sheep, and if he was willing to let me off I would make Dillon
a proposition. "All right, Billy, you can make a proposition with Dillon
and in case you do not carry it out, you need not quit here," said
Mr. Moore.

Joe Dillon came up the next Thursday night and began to talk to me there
in the store about taking his sheep to Montana. I told him that I would
talk to him about the matter as soon as the store closed that night, but
that I did not want to hear one word of it until that time.

After the store was closed up I told Mr. Walker to stay with me and hear
my proposition with Dillon, and I wanted him to draw up our contract. I
told Dillon that I would take charge of his sheep under these
stipulations. I would have to have absolute control of the sheep, men,
mess wagons, pack horses and everything else. I would employ the men and
discharge them. I told him I would furnish $700.00 or $800.00 to
properly equip the train, and I would take a bill of sale from him for
all the sheep. I also told him that he would have to go on ahead on the
stage coach, or do as he chose in the matter, that he must absolutely
remain away from our camps and herds while I was in control. After much
deliberation, he agreed to my terms, and we signed up.

I filled an ox wagon with bacon, flour, salt, soda, tobacco and saddles.
Mr. Dillon watched me put tobacco on the wagon and said I was loading
unnecessary stuff on the wagon. I told him that I would need all the
bacon and the tobacco, and perhaps several head of sheep to make my
treaties with the Indians when I took my sheep through their
reservations. Now this little speech brought a sneer to the face of my
venerable partner. "No use of making treaties with the Indians; you get
a military escort without paying anything out." I told him no military
escort would need to travel with me.

About the middle of April I received the 3000 head of sheep from
Maxwell's ranch and took my assistant, Mark Shearer to Calhoun's ranch
to get the other 1000 head. I had left the camp in good trim there near
Maxwell's and everything was progressing nicely with my sheep on the
grass with good herders. At Calhoun ranch we were delayed on account of
Calhoun having to shear the sheep. However, after four days' delay we
started back toward Maxwell's. Joe Dillon met us not far from camp and
told me he had discharged four of my men and paid off two in tobacco and
the other two men would not take tobacco. He said that he had hired four
more in their place. One was a hunter and he had agreed to give him $80
per month to keep the men in provisions. The other was a blacksmith
which he thought we might need after we started over the mountains.

"Now, Joe, do you think you can discharge a man without paying him off?"
I asked him. "Well," he said, "I didn't have the money on hand to pay
him with." I told him that his meddling with these men did not suit me,
and that I did not want his four men, moreover, I said, "I will not move
a peg from camp with them. I employ my drivers and I discharge them."

When we got into camp the hunter had killed a jack rabbit, all the meat
he had provided since he was employed four days before. After
reinstating my men and making Mr. Dillon understand that his place was
at the other end of the line, where he might as well be enjoying himself
until our arrival in Montana, we started on our journey.

Dillon went on the stage to Kansas City and en route to Kansas City he
fell in with a sharper at Bent's old fort, and told him that he had a
drove of 7000 sheep coming. The sharper had 20 blooded brood mares and a
stallion, and bantered Dillon for a trade. They made the trade and
Dillon gave the "shark" a bill of sale for the sheep with the provision
that I would agree to it.

When we got within nine miles of Denver we camped for dinner. While we
sat around our "picnic spread" a couple of men drove up in a buggy and
asked if Mr. Ryus was there. I told him to "alight" and take a few
refreshments with us, that I was Mr. Ryus. He told me to come out to the
buggy, he wanted to talk with me. I told him that "this is my office,
out with whatever you've got to say." He then asked me if the sheep were
Mr. Dillon's. I told him they certainly were not. They were mine. Then
he buckled up. "No, Mr. Ryus, they aren't your sheep, they are mine. I
bought them at Bent's old fort from Joe Dillon, and I am going to take
possession of those sheep and take them to Denver and sell them." I told
him that "maybe he would and maybe he wouldn't; we would see about
that." I then asked him what he gave for the sheep. He told me he had
traded some blooded horses and a stallion for them. I then asked him if
he was dealing for himself or for other parties. He told me he was
dealing for himself. "For how much are your horses mortgaged?" I asked
him. "Oh, something like $4000," he replied. I told the "horse trader"
that it wasn't worth while to take up any more time. As for my part, I
had rather think of my buffalo steak right then, and if he didn't want
to get out of the buggy and come and eat with us, to "drill on" toward
Denver, that me, the boys and the sheep were going to Montana. He said,
"Alright, Mr. Ryus, we will drill on, as you say, but we will take
possession of those sheep before you get into Denver." I told him to
"crack his whip," and to go to that warm place from which no "hoss
trader" returned if he wanted to, but for him not to interfere with me
or the sheep. Away he went. My temper was at its best and thoroughly
under control, so I told the boys to not feel the least alarm, no
"yaller backed hoss trader" would get those sheep, without getting into
a "considerable tarnatious scrap" with Little Billy.

It seemed that we were destined to have several visitors before we
arrived in Denver. This time we had camped for supper and a lonely
looking half starved individual put in his appearance with a saddle on
his back. He asked me if he could get some supper with us and I told him
to "lay to," and he then asked me if I knew him. I told him I knew him
but it would not be to his disadvantage.

A few days before this I had seen an account in the paper where a Mr.
Service had shot and killed a Mexican. I told him that there was already
a reward out for $1,000 for him. I told him he needn't say a word about
the affair to the boys, and I wouldn't. He told me that he had killed
the Mexican because he couldn't avoid it. It seemed that a very rich
Mexican with a twenty-wagon train and 100 yoke of oxen had stopped near
the little ranch of Service and Miller to cook their meals. He had
unyoked his cattle and driven them to the creek for water and instead of
returning by the route he had gone, threw down the fence and was driving
his oxen through Service's ten-acre corn patch. The corn was up about
two feet high and the cattle were literally ruining the corn. Mr.
Service attempted to drive the cattle off the corn, but the Mexican
hollowed to his peons to drive them on through. Mr. Service told him to
either pay the damage that his oxen had done his corn or drive them off.
The Mexican told him he would do neither. By this time Mr. Service was
thoroughly angry and told the Mexican that he would either take the oxen
off the corn or one or the other of them would die. Mr. Service was
unarmed at the time and he wheeled his horse around and went to the
house and got what money they had there and his rifle and returned and
shot the Mexican dead. He then made the peons drive the cattle away, and
he started for Maxwell's ranch on his pony. After reaching the foothills
of the mountains he dismounted and threw rocks at his horse to make it
leave, then he scrambled on a few miles through the young timber until
he came to a hanging rock under which there was a kind of cave. He crept
into this place to rest and snatch sleep if possible.

In the meantime the Mexicans belonging to the train gathered up all the
Mexicans they could find scattered through the country, and without
molesting the partner of Service, started out to hunt him. Service said
that the Mexicans were so close to where he was lying that he could hear
every word of their conversation in that still, isolated place. He knew
from their talk they were going on to Maxwell's ranch where they
supposed they would find him. About ten o'clock that night he crept out
of his hiding place and crawled and slipped until he reached Maxwell's
ranch, then he went into the stable where Maxwell kept his favorite race
horse and led him out far enough from the house to be safe, then he
jumped on him and rode him until the faithful animal laid down and died
of exhaustion. He was left on foot some 75 miles east of where I was.
Service was so weak and exhausted from worry, lack of sleep and
nourishment that his condition was pitiable. We had to watch him for
twenty-four hours to keep him from over-eating.

One ox driver who was an Irishman by the name of Johnnie Lynch came to
me and told me that the other ox driver had told him he knew who Service
was and that he said he was going to "give him up" when they reached
Denver and that when we got into Denver, they were going to "give him
up" and collect the $1,000 reward for him. Johnnie Lynch said that he
did not want to see Service put in irons, and that he thought Service
did no more than was right. "Wan more of those devilish Mexicans out uv
th' way don't hurt nohow," was his comment. "Now, Johnnie," says I, "you
go to my assistant, Mark Shearer, and tell him to tell the wagon driver
that if he undertakes to hand Service over to the authorities at Denver,
that he will kill him." When we got to within five miles of Denver, Mark
Shearer went around to the driver and told him to get back in the wagon,
and if he stuck his head outside that wagon sheet, he would use it for a
target. The driver was a born coward and quietly obeyed and remained
under the wagon sheet until we were forty miles beyond Denver when Mark
told him to "come to" now and try to be a man.

The next night after Service came to our camp, he wanted to help stand
guard over the sheep at night with Barney Hill, my night herder. He said
he couldn't sleep nights. Barney told him to lie down and go to sleep,
that he would let no one harm him. He went to sleep and along about
eleven o'clock, he began to yell, "There they come, there they come, the
Mexicans, etc.," and he fired his revolver and made a general stir. We
managed to quiet him down. He was delirious and only half awake. For two
months Service got along all right.

When we arrived at the North Platte River the snow had melted so the
river was running very fast. We attempted to cross the sheep on the
ferry. 125 sheep were placed on the ferry boat and across we started.
_Out_ 500 feet from the landing on the east side where we went in, the
ferryman got afraid the sheep were too far forward and would tip the
boat, so he attempted to push them back, and pushed some of the sheep
off in the river. All the sheep then made a rush to follow the
unfortunate ones. Barney Hill, who was on the back end of the boat, got
knocked off and could not swim and the boys had a good laugh at him
climbing over the sheep, looking like a drowned rat trying to get out of
a molasses barrel. Dick Stewart was a good swimmer and so he landed back
on the boat.

After this load full, the boatman would not ferry any more sheep over
and we were compelled to swim them. We would call the goat and tell him
to go into the water. The goat would strike for the opening on the
opposite side of the river, but goat or no goat, the sheep would not
attempt the swim unless the sun was shining. The mountains rose right at
the edge of the river, consequently the sun only struck the river from
eleven o'clock a.m. to two o'clock p.m. and we could only put over 150
or 200 sheep at a time. This operation took six days to perform. Getting
4000 sheep over a river under these trying conditions were anything but
pleasant, even in those days, when we knew no better method.

At this ferry a funny incident occurred. I had a sorrel, blazed face
mule, and while we were crossing the sheep an old Irishman on his way to
Montana with a white pony and a blazed face mule, the very picture of my
mule, crossed the river on the ferry. I saw the Irishman's lay-out, but
Johnnie Lynch did not see the mule. The next morning I told Johnnie to
go out to the herd and bring my mule in. The old Irishman had camped
near us and had picketed his mule out but did not know I had a mule so
near like his. Johnnie saw the Irishman's mule picketed out about half
way between our camp and our herd, and he pulled up the picket and
started on to the camp with the mule. Pretty soon the angry old Irishman
came up behind Johnnie and knocked him down for trying to steal his
mule. Johnnie ran into camp and got my carbine and started for the
Irishman, I ran after him and asked him what he was "up to" and he told
me he had my mule coming in with it and the Irishman had accosted him
and knocked him down and took the mule away from him. About that time
the Irishman had come "along side" me and explained his position. He
said Johnnie had stolen his mule and that he was going to get his men
and hang him. Mark Shearer then begun an explanation but the two
Irishmen were on the "war path" and explanations were out of order. When
we finally got them straightened out, they had no very friendly feeling
for each other, and inwardly made up their minds to--BLANKETY-BLANK

The day I crossed my two wagons across the River, the Irishman was on
the boat with his mule Packed with provisions and clothing. Johnnie
Lynch was driving one yoke of oxen. I saw the Irishman raise his gun off
of the floor and put It to his shoulder as though he was going to Shoot.
I leveled my pistol on him and told him To drop the gun or he was a dead
man. He dropped the gun and I made him walk between the wagons. Mark
Shearer picked up the gun, took the cap off of it, wet the powder in the
tube and handed it back to the old fellow and told him to make no more
attempts to kill a man. We took one direction at the forks of the road
and he took another.

About 300 miles beyond this ferry we met the white pony returning but we
never saw any more of the Irishman. It is very probable that he "met his
Waterloo" somewhere in the boundless plains. We encountered a band of
the Sioux and Ute Indians, some of the same tribe that had killed
General Custer. Something like 150 or 200 came to camp. A few of them
could talk English. At the time they came to the camp, they were in a
strange mood. It took some courage and diplomacy on my part to keep my
men encouraged and to appear at ease with the Red Men.

I went up to the chief and told them I had a large drove of sheep to
take to Montana, and that I must necessarily pass through their hunting
grounds, but was willing to pay them for the liberty I was taking. This
seemed to please the Indians and I told them we would eat before we
proceeded to business. We soon had some bacon, bread and coffee ready
which we offered to our guests before we began to eat. After they had
the first "helping" then we all began to eat our rations, after which we
passed the corn cob pipes and tobacco and while we talked we smoked. I
gave them two caddies of tobacco, 200 pounds of bacon, a hundredweight
of flour, several papers of soda, several pounds of salt, and a large
bucket of coffee.

One Indian said that in order to preserve peace and to protect us on our
route ten of them would travel with us through the wildest portion of
the country.

The strange escort remained with us two days, and when we were almost to
Fort Bridger, one of the Indians said that we would have no trouble
until after we had passed Fort Bridger and he did not think we would
encounter any perils even then.

When they were determined to decamp, I took ten silver dollars out of my
pocket, and gave each one of them a silver dollar. This pleased the
Indians greatly and they shook hands with me and departed.

When we arrived in Fort Bridger I had my sheep driven on past the fort,
and stopped to see the commanding officer. I asked him what their rules
were for traveling through the Indian country. He told me that a large
caravan of 200 wagons would start out in a few days and I would have to
drive the sheep on outside of the fort where I could get good range for
the sheep and wait until the other emigrants came up. I thanked him, but
I told Mark Shearer that I believed we could make it alright without the
caravans. So on we started. The sheep didn't have to be driven; they
drove us. By daylight those sheep were always ready to go on toward
their goal. They would pick and run ahead seldom ever stopping until
about the middle of the day. It was our rule to stop and eat or rest
when the sheep started. Truth is stranger than fiction, and it is the
truth that we would often make thirty-five or forty miles a day with
those sheep. The herdsman would follow the goat and the sheep followed
the goat. When the sheep were a little too industrious, the herdsman
made the goat lay down, then the sheep would lay down all around him.
Sometimes they would lay down about five or six o'clock, then we would
eat. But if they got up and started on we went, and they seldom ever
stopped to rest until eight or nine o'clock. The four drives averaged
from seven to ten miles a drive. In making this trip from Maxwell's
ranch in New Mexico to Virginia City, Montana, I crossed seventeen
rivers with those sheep and arrived in Virginia City with less than 100
sheep short. I sold a few to the Snake Indians for from $5 to $8 each.
Of course, this was in trade, but it pleased them equally as well as if
it had been a gift.

The next band of Indians we came into after leaving the Sioux, were the
Snake Indians. They were situated on the Snake River one hundred miles
from Virginia City. Snake River is one of the most important tributaries
of the Columbia. Instead of making a treaty with these Indians, I traded
them sheep and a caddy of tobacco for buffalo robes and deer skins, and
they seemed as well satisfied as if I had given them the sheep and
tobacco gratis.

About one hundred miles from where we met the Snake Indians, we came to
a toll bridge. Here I met my worthy partner for the first time since I
had sent him on his "way rejoicing." Mr. Dillon had told the keeper of
the toll bridge that he had seven thousand sheep on the road and they
would have to pass over his toll bridge.

The keeper of the toll bridge was on the lookout for us because the
report that Dillon had made would swell his finances $350. Inasmuch as
the toll across the bridge was 5c per head. When we arrived at the
bridge the keeper told me his charge would be $350. I told him I could
not pay the price, but he said Dillon would pay the toll. I asked him
what Dillon had to do with the sheep. "Why," he said, "they are Dillon's
sheep." I told him they were not Dillon's sheep, they were mine, and I
showed him my bill of sale. He said that nevertheless they were Dillon's
sheep. I asked him to describe Joe Dillon to me. He did so, and did it
to a "tyt." "Now," I said to him, "you go up on the hill and count those
sheep." They were laying down up on the hill in a kind of a swag.

There was a Missourian there and he told the keeper he was a sheep man,
that his father was a large Missouri stock man, and that he could
approximate the number at a glance. The way those sheep lay together, it
did not look as if there was more than 1000 sheep. I asked him if he
thought there was over a thousand sheep there and he said he did not
think there were. The toll keeper said that when those sheep went
skipping across the bridge, it "looked goldarned like there mout be a
million uv 'em, and they must 'a bin three mile long, be blasted."

"Well," I said, "of course you can count them." "Yes," he said, "I have
counted lots of sheep, and will count them." I went up to the station
and made arrangements that if he did not succeed in counting the sheep,
I would pay him $75 in tobacco or sheep, but that I had no money. The
toll keeper said he would neither take sheep nor tobacco, "but," he
said, "I will take a draft on the Virginia City Bank for $75.00." I told
the driver to drive the sheep across. "First," I said, "you get the goat
up and start him off, then keep the sheep just as close together as you
can and hop them across in a 'whoop.'" He did this and it was impossible
for the "counter" to count them.

About 300 miles from this bridge, Mr. Service quit me. He bought a half
interest in a stock of cattle and in a toll road in that section, and I
heard no more from him until some 25 years later, when he again leaped
into the limelight.

It seems that he had made a wise purchase because so many trains passed
over his toll road. He traded his fat cattle to the immigrants for their
poor plugs. He bought up all the poor cattle he could and would fatten
them and trade them off for three or four poor, jaded animals. The
profits were enormous.

On our route from this toll bridge there was no particular incident
occurred. Virginia City was a fine little village of about 3500
inhabitants. The estimate of gold taken out of the creeks running
through Virginia City was $100,000,000, mostly placer diggings, but it
was entirely abandoned at this time.

However, at the time we were there with the sheep, there was about
thirty Chinamen prospecting a lot of 200 square feet. The price set to
them by the owner was $3000. He took $200 down and $200 per week until
the $3000 was paid. The man they bought from agreed to see they had the
right to use the water in the creek. The superintendent of the Chinamen
had this man go with them to the mayor of the city to ask the city to
protect them. The mayor then called on the city marshall and they agreed
to see that the Chinamen were not molested from getting the water from
the creek. The stream was very small and did not have very much water,
so the owners built a little dam and put in a tread wheel for the
purpose of raising the water, so as to have a fall of water to wash the
dirt in their sluice box.

After they had mined two weeks, twenty-five or thirty white miners
concluded that the Chinamen shouldn't work in the territory and they
went above the Chinamen on the creek--about 500 yards or so, and built a
large dam across the creek with a wide opening, and put in their gate
and stopped the Chinamen from getting water.

When the Chinamen were thus shut off, they went to the mayor with their
complaint. The mayor promised to investigate the matter, and told them
to go on prospecting on their other lots farther down the creek for the
purpose of seeing what other property they would want to buy, while he
investigated the cause of trouble.

The mayor and the marshall knew what the miners were up to, but said
nothing then about it. They were aware that the miners wanted to raise
the big gate and let the water all out at once.

There was an old building fairly close to the dam the white miners had
built, and the marshall and two other men secreted themselves in the old
house to watch the dam. At about one o'clock in the morning, two men
went in there with their crow-bars to raise the gate so all the water
could waste, and wash out the Chinamen's machinery.

Slipping upon the miners engaged in their work of depredation, the
marshall pulled his gun on them, and marched, them to the city lockup.
The next morning a few of the miners got together and were going to
release the miners in the lockup. Then the mayor ordered the fire bells
rung and sent runners out over the city calling the people together.
Among the people who came to the "consultation" were many miners. The
marshal let the men out of the "cooler," and took their names, then the
mayor made a speech to the citizens and got their sentiments. He asked
the citizens as a community if it would not be better to let the
Chinamen alone and let them work their property, than to drive them out
and destroy their dam. He wanted the opinion of the people. He wanted to
know how many of the citizens were willing to let the Chinamen alone and
let them continue to operate their property.

The citizens who wanted the Chinamen let alone were about ten to one of
the miners.

The mayor now called on two or three prominent speakers of the city to
make a talk before the people who told why they believed the Chinamen
should be left alone, then the mayor called on a representative of the
miners to tell the people why they should want to ruin the Chinamen's
work. None of the miners would reply.

That night the Council passed an ordinance prohibiting, under severe
pains and penalties, the willful destruction of property, and
consequently the Chinamen were left to pursue their work. The dam proved
an immense benefit to the city and surrounding country, and other people
began mining their lots, and using the water that had collected during
the night and saving it over, several mines were supplied with water.

I was in a hurry to settle up with Mr. Dillon at this time and get
started back to the States, going by the way of Salt Lake City in
company with two men who were going through with an ambulance. I
remained in Salt Lake City two weeks when the roof on the Great Mormon
Temple as about three-fourths finished. At the time I was there, the
temple was about four feet above the ground and workmen had been
continuously at work for seven years. Up to that time, I was the only
Gentile who had ever explored the underground workings of the temple. I
went from Salt Lake to Denver.

I had calculated to preempt a hundred and sixty acres of land in or
about Denver, and stopped over there for a few days. At that time I
could have taken 160 acres where the Union Depot now stands about the
center of the city of Denver. However, like many another boy, I took a
sudden notion to go home and see Mother first, and before I took
possession of this valuable "dirt," I pulled out on the first coach
going toward Kansas City. Stage fare cost me nothing because I rode with
Barnum-Vickeroy & Veil.

When we got to Booneville, where I used to live with Colonel A.G. Boone,
when I drove the stage on the Denver line, the old Colonel insisted that
I stay with him. He said he had 2,500 head of sheep, half of which with
all the increase, would be mine, if I would stay and take care of them
five years. I told him that I had planned to homestead a 160 acres up
near Denver and that as soon as I had had my visit with my mother I
wanted to go to Denver, and could not take up his proposition.

At that time Colonel Boone talked a great deal about the Indians. He
told me they were being shamefully treated; that the soldiers were
making war on them, etc., and said that it was his opinion that if the
Government would put a guard around the white people and keep them from
shooting the Indians, there would be no more Indian troubles.

He told me that the conductors along the Long Route between Fort Lyon
and Fort Larned, were having no end of trouble. He told me that several
tribes had asked him about me, and said they seemed curious to know
whether or not I would ever return.

After we left Colonel Boone's place, going toward Independence, we met
several tribes, some of whom knew me just as soon as they "got their
eyes on me," but I did not understand their language, and their
interpreter told me that they wanted to know if I was coming back on the
route. Several spoke about Colonel Leavenworth and Satanta and asked for
news concerning the Little White Chief, for that was the way they loved
to remember their little boy friend.

There was something like 45 or 50 Indians in this gang, and the driver
was anxious to get rid of them, for he was not only afraid of them,
because of the trouble they had been having with the Long Route
conductors, but they wanted to be "driving on" getting nearer their
destination. I told the driver to let me manage the Indians and we would
"pull through" all right.

I told the Indians to sit down around us and I would get some coffee for
them and a very small lunch. The conductors never had anything hardly,
and gave the Indians nothing but abuse. I managed to get together from
the conductor's mess, a small lunch, which they ate, and I invited them
to go with us to our next stopping place, fifteen miles distant, and eat
with us properly.

On our way to the next stopping place, however, these Indians were
joined by other small bands which kept collecting. When we camped for
lunch and to let our mules go out to eat, the Indians let their ponies
graze, also. As provisions were scarce, we had a very slim meal, but
were all good humored over it.

When the coach was ready to resume its journey, I shook hands with every
one of the Indians and told them I was going to the States and wanted
that they come to see us there. There were eight other passengers,
besides myself, on the coach, who laughingly said that they had crossed
the plains several times and had never witnessed such a scene between
white man and Indian, only when they traveled with me.

There were five conductors. Four conductors were on the road all the
time and one resting all the time. In other words, while one conductor
rested one week, the other four worked until the time came for him to
rest and the other work. We usually rested either in Kansas City
or Santa Fe.

Before leaving this chapter, I desire to tell my readers what brought
Mr. Service into the limelight again. About twenty-five years after he
killed the Mexican, he sold out his ranch and cattle and took the money
he had on hands, which amounted to something like $43,000.00, and
deposited it in the Denver National Bank of Denver, Colorado, and went
to Springer, New Mexico, in the locality of where he had killed the
Mexican. He went to the sheriff and asked him if he had ever heard of
the man, Service, wanted in that country for the murder of the rich
Mexican. The sheriff told him that he "guessed" that the murder had
occurred before his day, but that he had heard of it, and it must date
some thirty years back.

Mr. Service asked the sheriff if the murderer had ever been back there
to stand trial, and whether or not the reward that had been offered at
the time of the murder was still good? "No," the sheriff said, "I do not
think the reward would be any good." The sheriff went on to tell Mr.
Service that he had been told by persons who claimed to have knowledge
of the matter, that Service had served his country well to have killed
the Mexican.

"Mr. Sheriff," said Mr. Service, "I am the man who killed that Mexican."
The sheriff looked him over and said, "that can't be, you are too old a
man for that." Mr. Service had whiskers 12 inches long and perfectly
gray. His features were so transformed that his old partner did not
recognize him. Mr. Service told the sheriff that nevertheless, he was
the man, and that the reward had been offered for.

Mr. Service told the sheriff that he wanted to "give up" and gave him
$200 and asked him to hire a good lawyer for him because he was
unacquainted in the section, and I want you to take out a warrant
against me. I want to be legally acquitted of crime and be a "free man
once more."

After talking to the sheriff, he went to see his old partner, who did
not recognize him. He told him that he had more of the worldly goods
than the ranch was worth, but would like to have a settlement, and
invoice his own belongings, as well as the property his partner had
gotten together since their separation, and said they would strike a
balance and have a settlement. The old partner, whose name I have
forgotten, said, "no, I won't do it," he said, "you took the money from
the house when you left, and I had to pay Maxwell for his race horse."
"Very true," said Mr. Service, "you have had use of the farm these long
years, and would that compensate you for what you have paid out?" But,
he added, "the hay on the place has brought you about $2,000 a year, and
I think it is best for us to have a settlement." The partner would hear
to no settlement being arrived at, saying that he should have what was
there. "Well," said Service, "we will pass receipts." Each took a
receipt from the other, shook hands and bade the other good-bye. Mr.
Service was a broad-minded, liberal fellow, and had fully intended to
resume the partnership with his partner and share and share alike in his
money earned while he was away from the ranch. "By-the-bye, I will let
you look over this small book," said Mr. Service as he handed his bank
book showing the balance due him at the National Bank of Denver. "Why,"
said the partner, "you have $43,000 in this book to your credit." "Yes,
sir," said Mr. Service, "had we invoiced our goods together, half this
amount would have been yours together with other moneys I have in other
banks." That talk completed the settlement and while the partner was
completely crestfallen, Service shaved and became a white man and free
citizen of the States.



CHAPTER XXII.

Daugherty, a Silk and Linen Drummer, Contracts to Build a Cellar.

At Fort Zara I met another old friend. Bill Daugherty was there keeping
the station. Nothing would do him but I should stay over there a week or
so. Daugherty was a natural born Irishman who had "kissed the Blarney
stone," full of wit and humor. He went to the coach and took my "grip
sack" off and took it to the house, and said I had to stay. I liked that
first rate, but I did hate to lose the time.

Daugherty came to Kansas in 1862, drumming for a house that sold fine
linens, laces and silks, and had never done anything but sell silks,
etc. He was sitting in a kind of a tavern one morning and chanced to see
an advertisement in the paper that struck his "funny side." A gentleman
living at the corner of Fifth and Shawnee Streets in Leavenworth,
Kansas, had advertised for a contractor to build him a cellar, and the
advertisement said that none "but experienced contractors need apply."
The drummer, Bill Daugherty, decided he would call upon the gentleman
who wanted "an experienced contractor." When he arrived at the place
specified in the advertisement he found it to be a large general
merchandise store. Daugherty introduced himself to the proprietor of the
place and told him that he was an experienced contractor. "And," said
Daugherty, "I see you are in a hurry for the cellar, sure and I am the
laddie that can build that cellar quicker than a bat can wink its eye.
I'm from auld Ireland, and conthracting is me pusiness." The merchant
told him that he wanted the cellar built right away, and showed him the
ground he wanted it built on--which adjoined his business house on the
corner. Daugherty asked the merchant how much time he would allow him to
build the cellar in, and the merchant told him not longer than eight or
ten days. "Well," said Bill, "I will do it in less time."

"Now, sir, you furnish me the tools, shovels, picks, wheelbarrows, and
running plank to the number I want, and I will go to work on your
cellar, Friday, if you will give me $100." The merchant said he could
not afford to give more than $80 for the job and that he would have to
take $20 in trade. "Alright, py golly," Bill answered, "I will take the
job that way, providing you put it in writing." The contract was drawn
up and said that the cellar was to be commenced on at 7 o'clock Saturday
morning. The merchant was to furnish all tools or pay for the tools
Daugherty bought up to a certain given number. Friday night Daugherty
had all his tools on the "job" and made everything ready to commence
work Saturday morning. Bright and early Saturday morning Bill was there
and he had two wagons from the saloon on the ground also.

Thursday evening when he first made the agreement to build the cellar,
he went to the saloon and told the "Bys" to come to Fifth and Shawnee
Streets Saturday, that he was going to give a "B," and it was to be the
best time, and the liveliest time, and the finest "B" they ever saw. He
told the boys at the saloon all about his contract with the merchant,
and as they were mostly Irish, they quickly agreed to help out with
the plan.

Bill Daugherty had the saloon man send down four bartenders, and he had
a keg of beer placed at equal distances apart with mugs and glasses and
the bartenders to draw the beer, and the fun commenced. Before seven
o'clock more than fifty men were on the job. The alley behind the store
building was five feet under grade and he put running plank on the
ground from the front of the ground running into the alley, and put four
wheel-barrows on them and a set of men shoveling. The work progressed
nicely with the Irishmen working and drinking and singing. Bill
Daugherty was in his glory and the old merchant was "feel-n' blue." Bill
kept encouraging his workmen telling them that some "great big doin's
was a-comin' off along about eaten' time." The restaurant man came with
a fine dinner and furnished everything in the eating line but the
coffee, and the saloon man was there with the "drinks."

At one o'clock they all started to work and at 4 o'clock that afternoon
they had completed the cellar, and the engineer had inspected it, and
passed his judgment that it was a "good job." Daugherty went in the
store to get "paid off," he was feeling pretty good.

He told the merchant that he wanted a nice vest for himself, a pair of
shoes, and a shirt and hat. Then, he told the merchant that he wanted to
see a fine paisley shawl, one that "you would like to see your wife
wear." The merchant showed him an $8 shawl, but it did not please the
fancy of old Bill Daugherty. "Show me a shawl that you would be pleased
to see your wife wear, one that you would be proud to see her wear to
church, that old shawl is not genteel." This time the merchant took down
a $16 shawl and after close examination, and the assurance that it was
the best one he had in the house, Daugherty accepted the shawl. "Now,"
said Daugherty, "I want my cash." The merchant counted out the balance
of the money to him, and said he would wrap the shawl for the
"contractor." The merchant began to wrap the shawl up for Bill and Bill
told him that "that won't do, a lady wouldn't have a fine shawl wrapped
up like that, let me ahold of the strings and fine papers." Daugherty
called for tissue paper, he wrapped his purchase up neatly and then
called for ribbon with which to tie it. He wanted green and red ribbons.
After encasing the article in the tissue paper bound around with
ribbons, he put a piece of wrapping paper about it, and left the store,
and its room full of amused spectators.

Bill went from the store straight to the home of the old merchant and
told the wife of the merchant that he was "frash from auld Ireland, and
that he had one shawl left, from his large stock, that he would sell her
real cheaply. He commenced to talk to the lady, and all the time he was
talking he was unwinding the papers from around the shawl. She looked at
him in amazement, and he told her that he had sold out a large
collection of fine shawls that he had brought from Paris, and that her
husband had seen this shawl and greatly admired it, and that he had said
to him in the presence of several other men, that he would like to see
his wife wear a shawl like it." She told him that the shawl must be
very choice.

At last the wrappers were all off the shawl, and he threw it about her
shoulders and told her to look in the glass. He slapped his hands
together, saying, "beautiful, beautiful--real Parisian." On talked the
talkative Bill, until at last he saw he had won the lady to his view of
thinking that she was a real Parisian figure with the shawl gracefully
draped about her shoulders, and she asked him what he would take for it.

He told her that she could have it for just $65. and before she could
catch her breath, he wheeled her about where she could see her profile
in the glass, and told her to "just look at the reflection, could
anything be handsomer?" He told her that it was the last one he had, and
was cheap at the price, that her husband had said so, and that he said
he would like to see her wear it.

She paid the money for it and he departed. He met one of his cronies
down the street and told him about the transaction. "Now," said he, "you
go down and tell him that he had better come over to the saloon and
treat, and I will have the other boys over there hidden in the back
room, and we will all get a glass and

"All go down to Rowser, to Rowser, to Rowser, We'll all go down to
Rowser and get a drink of beer."

Well, the merchant "fell to" and the treats cost him in round figures
the sum of $11.00. When Daugherty left to catch his stage out from there
to Fort Zara, he was still treating the crowd, and getting pretty
full, himself.

After the affair at Leavenworth, Bill Daugherty came to Kansas City on
the boat, and asked the stage company if they needed a man to care for
some of their stations. Mr. Barnum employed Bill and he went to Fort
Zara, out among the Indians, where Bill's tongue helped him to get along
very nicely with them.

When he chanced to allude to Fort Leavenworth, he always told the story
of his "contracting" at Leavenworth on the corner of Fifth and Shawnee
Streets. Out there at Fort Zara, Bill enjoyed himself as only Irishmen
can, but his stumbling block was Captain Conkey, who was the biggest
crank on earth, "take it from me," for he and I had a little "set-to."
Daugherty always sent his "red, white and blue regards to the old
merchant" by whosoever went to Leavenworth.



CHAPTER XXIII.

Captain Conkey.

Captain Conkey was a "jackass" to make a long story short. He had a
company of soldiers at Fort Zara for the purpose of escorting the mail
from one station to another. Once on my way East with a coach full of
passengers, a snow storm began to rage, at about four o'clock in the
afternoon, soon after I had left Fort Larned. It snowed so hard that at
8 o'clock we couldn't tell where the road was, and the passengers took
it time and about with me running along the road in front of the coach
to find the road.

We got to Fort Zara at ten o'clock that night, the orderly sergeant came
after the mail about 500 yards from the soldiers' camp. I told the
sergeant that I wanted an escort at nine o'clock in the morning. He gave
Captain Conkey my orders and the Captain told him to go back and arrest
me and put me in chains. The First Lieutenant told the Captain that I
would be there in the morning; that they had no place to sleep me, so
the Captain let me alone that night, but the next morning he sent his
orderly after me. When the orderly came to the station, he said to me,
"that old fool of a captain sent me down here to arrest you." I asked
him what he wanted with me. The orderly told me that he was to arrest me
for ordering an escort. I told the orderly to "fire away," I would go
over and see the old "mossback."

Their quarters was a little dugout in the side of the hill along the
river bank. They had a gunny sack for the door, and I went into the
first room, which was used for a kitchen, and the cook told me to go to
the next room, it had a gunny sack door, too, the First and Second
Lieutenants were in there. They told me to go on to the next room that
the Captain's headquarters was in the other room. I had my mittens and
overcoat on, and he said, "you pull off your hat, you insolent puppy,
and salute me." I replied to the Captain's kind words of greeting that,
"I will not salute you, but excuse me, I should have had manners enough
to have removed my hat." He told me that he "would put the irons" on me.
I answered him that I did not think he would do such an unmanly thing,
at least right then. This exasperated the haughty Captain, and he
hollowed for the First Lieutenant to come and put me in irons. I asked
him what he was there for, and he told me that it was "none of my
business." I then got pretty middling hot myself, and I told him that if
he did not know his business, that it was "up to me" to "put you next,"
or words to that extent. I told him that he was there for the purpose of
furnishing escorts for the United States mail and that it was I, and not
he, in command there, then, by virtue with the position I held with the
Government, and I told him that I now ordered him to be placed under
arrest. I called on the Lieutenant to place the irons on him. I told him
that I would take him to Leavenworth, and the Lieutenant, delighted by
the change of program, said, "alright."

Captain Conkey then told me that he would furnish the escort, and I told
him to do so, then, and I would leave him here, that I had no room on
the coach for such a "donkey" as he was, but that I would tell the
commanding officer at Fort Leavenworth that we needed a captain for the
company here, in order to save time and trouble for the other conductors
of the road. I told him that he had not only taken up time, but that he
had made a perfect "donkey" of himself, and of the men who had favored
him with this position.

Captain Conkey asked me if the Indians were bad again. I told him that
it did not matter whether they were bad or not, I wanted an escort. I
got my escort of fifteen soldiers at last and after getting the teams
hitched, off we started, the soldiers in advance to break the roads.
That is, as a matter of fact, all the use we had for them. We could
travel very well when they had ridden ahead and broke the snow so we
could follow the trail.

Daugherty built him a new station across the creek from where Conkey was
camped, on Walnut Creek. He put up corals for the mules and built a
fort-like building for his home. About the time he had finished his
buildings, some white hunters had killed some Indians, and trouble began
between the white race and the Indian tribes.

One day at about ten o'clock in the forenoon, Mr. Daugherty went up on
the top of his house with his field glasses to inspect the surrounding
country. He noticed that Indian smokes were all around, and the Indians
seemed to be coming toward them all the time.

He hastened down from the roof and called the orderly from Captain
Conkey's company to him and told him that unless the Captain moved to
his fort within an hour and a half that they would all be killed by the
Indians. There had been bad blood between Conkey and Bill Daugherty for
quite a while, and when Daugherty sent the orderly to Conkey with the
warning of the coming Indians, Captain Conkey got mad and told the
orderly to go over and arrest Daugherty for disturbing his peace. Just
as the soldiers coming to arrest him stepped on the bridge, Bill
Daugherty halted them. He said, "if you come another foot, I will fire
on you." You go back and tell Conkey, the fool, that if he don't get you
men to this side inside of half an hour, you will all be "gonners." If
you want the protection of my fort, come over and you will have the same
protection as I have, otherwise, you will go up in smoke, holy, or
otherwise. Daugherty then took his gun and went to the Captain, and
saluting him, said: "The Indians are coming, 1,000 strong, and unless
you get your wagons, etc., out of here, and at once, you will be
scalped." Captain Conkey then decided that for the benefit of his
health, he had better decamp to the other side for protection. He just
barely escaped when the Indians swooped down on his camp ground. Then
Daugherty took his gun and went to the bridge and laid the gun down and
walked over it toward the Indians, motioning to them that he came in
peace, and for them to come and get something to eat. Daugherty took
four of the Indians to his fort and gave them some bacon, coffee and
other provisions, and took two other men from the fort with him with
axes, to chop wood for a fire, and they cooked a meal and with the
Indians the four white persons and Bill Daugherty sat down to "meat."
Bill Daugherty showed the Indian chiefs over his fort, explained the
working of his guns and cannons. He had 40 port holes in the houses and
shelves under each one on which to rest a gun. After giving them a large
box of smoking tobacco, he told them they could go on back to their camp
and that he would keep the soldiers peaceable if he would keep his
braves peaceable. Captain Conkey told Daugherty that he believed he
would go down and see the chief, and Bill answered him, to "go if you
d--ed please, and you want to lose your scalp, for they will surely not
put up with your palaver." Conkey concluded that he had better remain in
the home of his enemy than risk his precious scalp at the camp of
the Indians.



CHAPTER XXIV.

Colonel Moore's Graphic Description of a Fight with Cheyennes.[1]

That Colonel Milton Moore for a quarter of a century has been a
prominent practitioner at the Kansas City bar, a member of the election
boards, and is now serving as a school commissioner is well known, but
that the old commander of the Fifth Missouri infantry was ever a Santa
Fe freighter in the days when freighting was fighting, was not generally
known until there appeared a month ago in Hal Reid's monthly, Western
Life, a paper written by Colonel Moore for the Kansas Historical Society.

The story is that of an engagement between a party of freighters, with
whom was young Moore, and a band of Indians, in 1864, not far from
Dodge City.

The story as told by Colonel Moore was incomplete in that he admitted he
did not know by what Indians his party was attacked. A week ago the
sequel appeared in the form of a letter from George Bent, at present
residing at Colony, Okla., who has written to Colonel Moore to tell him
that the leader of the Indians he fought with forty-four years ago was
the notorious "Little Robe," no chief at all but a great warrior. With
the Bent letter Colonel Moore's story is complete, and both are
here given:

"After the commencement of the Indian war on the upper Arkansas in 1864
caravans were not permitted to proceed westward of Fort Larned on the
Pawnee Fork, or the confluence of that stream with the Arkansas, near
where the city of Larned now stands, on the river road, in parties of
less than 100 men. In August two trains of Stuart, Slemmons & Co., who
had the general contract for the transportation of government stores for
the posts on the Arkansas and in New Mexico and Arizona that year,
reached the mouth of Pawnee fork, and found awaiting them a Mexican
train bound for some point below the Santa Fe, also a small train of
fourteen wagons under the direction of Andrew Blanchard of Leavenworth.
The name of the wagonmaster of the Mexican train is not remembered, but
he was either a Frenchman or Castilian. The S. S. trains were under the
charge respectively of Charles P. McRea and John Sage, both of whom were
men of experience and tried courage. The four trains having a force of
men numbering more than 100 were allowed to proceed.

"A full train of the period was twenty-five wagons loaded with freight,
and a provision wagon, commonly known as the 'mess wagon,' each drawn by
six yokes of oxen; the freight of each wagon was from 6,000 to 7,000
pounds. There was one wagonmaster, one assistant and one extra man,
denominated the 'extra hand,' who were mounted, twenty-six teamsters and
two night herders. In practice the night herders soon became teamsters,
replacing sick men, or those who for some reason had turned, or were
turned back, and the slavish duty of night herding cattle fell upon the
teamsters.

"Thomas Fields of Jackson County, Missouri, route agent for the S. S.
company, was elected captain of the combined trains. He was a man of
many years' experience on the plains, and had been in more than one
contest with the Indians.

"The rule of travel was: The train having the advance today should go to
the rear tomorrow, and so on. Blanchard, having light wagons, which
could be moved easily and rapidly, was dissatisfied with the rule, and
refused at times to be governed by it, with the result hereinafter stated.

"On Sunday, August 21, the trains, after a hard morning drive, reached
the head of the 'dry route,' which left the river some miles below the
present Dodge City, ran over the hills by old Fort Larned, not touching
the Arkansas valley again until the crossing of Walnut creek. McRea was
in front, followed by Sage, the Mexican, and Blanchard, in the order
named. The region was known to be dangerous because near the great trail
of the Indians in their journeyings from north to south and the reverse.

"McRea went into corral just south of the road about 10 o'clock a.m.,
and Sage and the Mexican in their order, but well closed up. The three
first trains corralled so as to leave room for Blanchard's train with
its rear resting on or near a bayou in such way that it would be
practically impossible for a band of Indians to sweep around it. Instead
of camping at the place designated, Blanchard continued on and went into
corral about half a mile beyond McRea. The cattle were placed south of
the trains, near the river, and guards put out. The trainmen were armed
with Minie rifles, and the order in force required that these be carried
in slings on the left sides of the wagons--a rule but little observed.
As a matter of fact, the guns were usually in the wagons, and
practically inaccessible when needed in an emergency, except as
hereafter stated. The teamsters of McRea's train were largely from
Missouri; and a number of them had seen military service upon one side
or the other in the Civil War. They were a well-controlled and reliable
body. The first mess on the right wing were white men, excepting the
negro cook, Thomas Fry, who was afterwards a ragpicker in Kansas City,
and died there. He was an honorably discharged soldier from the United
States volunteer army on account of the loss of the first two fingers of
the right hand in battle.

"The second mess was wholly negroes, or 'black men,' as the Missourians
of the period termed them. The negroes, possibly from the novelty of
having far-shooting guns in their possession, habitually had their arms
at hand when in camp, practicing at targets as far as allowed by the
rules of the wagonmaster. At about 1 o'clock in the afternoon the camp
was quiet, many of the men asleep; one big fellow was lying on his back
under his wagon singing 'Sweet Eloise,' and three men from McRea's train
were out more than 100 yards towards the ridge, shooting at
prairie dogs.

"Suddenly the cry of 'Indians' came from one of these. A glance at the
ridge not more than half a mile away showed it to be covered with
mounted Indians, and a dozen or more coming down the slope at full run,
evidently intending to overtake the three men before they could reach
the corral, and were in a fair way to do so, and possibly pass between
Sage and McRea. The six negroes of the second mess instead of running
inside the corral and firing from behind wagons, as they would have been
justified in doing, boldly opened fire on the advancing party and walked
out to the road towards them. This turned the Indians and the three men
came in safely. Nevertheless five of the Indians, led by a man on a
yellow pony, dashed through between the trains of McRea and Blanchard
and very near the latter. Probably forty or more passed around the head
of Blanchard's train and came in south of it.

"The ridge was still covered with mounted men who had not then descended
into the valley. When Blanchard saw the five Indians pass by the mouth
of his corral he mounted his pony, drew his revolver, an ordinary
36-caliber, and rode out after them, evidently not noticing those who
had passed around the front of his train. By the time he had gotten
possibly 200 yards from his camp the Indians, who by that time had
concentrated, divided into two parties, and one began to drive off his
cattle and the other to circle around him, lying on the sides of their
ponies and covering their bodies with shields. By this time the train
men in the corrals of McRea and Sage had got their arms and those on the
south side opened fire, but at too great a distance to protect
Blanchard, or to do the Indians serious injury.

"The Indians closed on Blanchard, and either knocked him off his horse
in an effort to get him onto one of their own ponies, to take him out of
the fire or he fell from wounds. As he fell his fourteen teamsters and
one night herder left their corral, and without a word of command formed
a line, and charged the mass of Indians, firing rapidly as they
advanced. The Indians hesitated before giving up their victim, but
finally retreated. Blanchard was able to get on his feet and run to his
men, who brought him to McRea's camp where he died in an hour. He had
been shot one or more times, lanced behind one shoulder, and an arrow
had entered his back near the spinal column and protruded about eight
inches out through the stomach; this he pulled through himself before
reaching his rescuers. When his pistol was found, which he had dropped,
two chambers were empty, but there was no evidence that he had wounded
any of the Indians.

"We buried him by the side of the road, and upon our return in the fall
it appeared that his grave had been opened, but whether by savage
Indians, wolves or loving hands we never knew. After retreating some
distance, driving the cattle of Blanchard's train, four Indians dashed
back into McRea's herd and took out about one-third, and a few belonging
to Sage. This was done under a heavy rifle fire, but so far as ever
known no Indians were hurt. They left two of their ponies down on the
river bank, which probably had been disabled. The Mexicans sustained no
loss. After the skirmish was ended a few well directed shots dispersed
the party that had remained on the hill; and one Indian, not exceeding
800 yards away, who seemed to be acting as a signal man, was directly
fired at--the rifleman resting his piece on a wagon tongue; so far as we
knew no harm happened to him, but he galloped swiftly from his post, and
was not seen again.

"The Indians drove the cattle so captured across the river to a point
two or three miles away, then unsaddled their ponies and rested. About 4
o'clock in the afternoon another herd, consisting of horses, mules and
cattle, the proceeds of other raids, were driven down on the south side
of the river, and added to those taken from Blanchard's train and the
S.S. trains. The combined herds were then driven southward over the sand
hills. We saw no more of this war party. It was anticipated that some
might remain and watch for a messenger that must necessarily be sent
back to Fort Larned; if any were left we had no evidence of it.

"As all of Blanchard's herd except two oxen had been taken it was
necessary to communicate with Fort Larned, the nearest military post.
The distance was estimated to be about sixty-five miles. The night
herder of Blanchard's train expressed a willingness to go upon this
perilous undertaking. While making his preparations at McRea's camp he
was asked if he wanted any money, that a little might be found in the
train. He replied that money would not 'help' him 'on a trip like this,'
but he would be glad to have a small bottle of whisky and some tobacco,
as he might not get anything to eat before the afternoon of the next
day. These having been furnished him, and when it was dark, without a
word of parting, he mounted the pony, off which Blanchard had been shot,
and rode away towards the hills, saying that it was his purpose to keep
away from the road and travel under the 'tops of the ridges.' On the
second morning after his departure, and just at daylight a body of
soldiers arrived, accompanied by the messenger, together with a long
train of wagons. The commanding officer took charge of Blanchard's
wagons, and within an hour McRea, Sage and the Mexican were moving on to
their several destinations under an escort, commanded by Captain
Butcher, Eleventh Missouri Volunteer cavalry. The remainder of the
journey was made by the three trains without incident--Indians having
been seen but once, and that was a short distance below old Fort Lyon;
the party disappeared rapidly, and was evidently traveling and not on
the warpath.

"Returning to the messenger, his courage and boldness stamped him as a
man whose name should be preserved, if possible, in Kansas historical
collections, but I never heard of him again, and do not remember his
name, possibly never knew it. The plainsman of that period, like his
successor, the cowboy, was not inquisitive. He might ask another where
he was from, but rarely his name--never his former business. The
messenger was then of full middle life, rather stout, with sandy colored
hair and beard, and brown eyes. He was simply a night herder, probably
had no other occupation, but like the trapper, the hunter and the
plainsman, he has probably joined his class.

"In 1877 I was at Dodge City several days taking testimony in a case
growing out of the loss of a train of mules near the Cimarron crossing
in the year 1864, and one afternoon, in company with a former member of
the firm of Stuart, Slemmons & Co., drove down to Fort Dodge and below
to identify, if possible, the place where Blanchard was killed, but
could not. From the course of a bayou I was led to believe that the
guard house at Fort Dodge was located at or near the place where the
rear of the Mexican train stood. However, there was no landmark by which
the place could be reasonably identified. In years past I have made many
inquiries to learn if possible what band of Indians made the attack, but
have obtained no satisfaction. It was the opinion of our captain, Thomas
Fields, judging from their mode of attack, that the Indians were
Comanches or Kiowas, or both."

In 1908 I wrote George Bent, a former school mate, and received the
following reply:

"Colony, Okla., Jan. 17, 1908.

"Colonel Milton Moore, Kansas City.

"Sir: I have seen published in a Western periodical your paper now in
the archives of the Kansas Historical Society relating to a battle your
train had with a war party in August, 1864, near where Fort Dodge was.
Cheyennes were camped on the Solomon river. Several war parties started
from this village to make raids on trains. Most of these parties went to
Platte river. The Sioux joined these war parties that went to Platte
river. 'Little Robe,' now dead, was head of this party that your trains
had fight with. There were twenty or thirty warriors in this party. The
man you speak of riding the yellow horse in the lead was 'Bear Man.' He
was no chief; only grand warrior in battles. I was in the Cheyenne
village when these war parties started out and I knew this young man
well. He died at Darlington agency several years ago from an old wound
he got fighting Utes. He was about twenty-five years old when he led
that charge through between the trains. The war party did not drive the
cattle very far out when they left them. Just before this fight, in
July, I think, the Kiowas and Comanches attacked a train or two at
Walnut creek. They killed several teamsters. Brother Charles was at
Charley Rath's ranch on Walnut creek at the time. He told me about it
when he came to the village on Solomon river. The whites started this
war in 1864. As I was with the Cheyennes at the time I knew what took
place. The Kansas Historical Society ought to get the Indian side of the
history of all these wars between the whites and Indians.

"Respectfully yours,

"GEORGE BENT."

[Footnote 1: NOTE.--Colonel Milton Moore, the signer of this Preface, is
a man of unusual legal ability. The confidence reposed in the old
commander of the Fifth Missouri infantry is clearly set forth by the
fact that for more than a quarter of a century he has been a member of
the police and election boards and has served for a long time as school
commissioner and is one of the most prominent practitioners at the
Kansas City Bar, with offices on the third floor, suite 3, Rialto Bldg.,
Kansas City, Mo.]



CHAPTER XXV.

Pecos Church.

I will call attention to the Old Pecos Church which was probably owned
by the Roman Catholics at one time, but which was in ruins when I first
saw it, as I drove by with my stage coach to Santa Fe. It stood twenty
miles east of Santa Fe on the old trail. The walls were built of adobe,
the doors were round-topped and built of solid hewed timbers, with
wooden hinges, wooden latches. When I first saw the old ruins it had a
belfry on the top of it with a rounded topped opening in it the same as
the doors below. This church was built on the plan of a fort. When it
was originally built it was the storage place for all kinds of
ammunition, Roman spears, shields, breast plates, guns, powder,
ammunition of every kind and character, used by Roman Catholics for war,
and was probably built by the Aztec Indians who were; under the control
of the Spaniards. It was said to be 300 years old when I saw it 53 years
ago. It was a two-story structure, built of adobe, or sun-dried brick.
The floors of the building were built of some kind of concrete and were
hard and glossy. The upper floor was built of eight by ten timbers laid
solidly together with a crease in the crack of each timber--dovetailed--
the cracks in the timbers fitted so closely together that the creases
did not show. The under part of the floor, that part which was exposed
as ceiling for the lower room was lavishly hand carved. This carving was
said to have been done by the Indians. There was carved in some places,
Indian squaws with their papooses on their backs, heads of big braves,
mooses, bow and arrows, fish, deer, antelope, horses, lizards and almost
everything imagined was carved in this timber. Those parts not exposed
directly to the elements were in a good state of preservation, while
those pieces exposed to the weather were brittle and would crumble like
chalk.

[Illustration: THE PECOS CHURCH.]

In the picture of the Pecos church you will note the pieces of fallen
timbers. Kosloski was a Polish ranchman whose ranch was traversed by the
Old Trail. This was a very picturesque ranch at the foot of the
Glorietta Mountains, half mile from the ruins of the old Pecos Church.
He bought the ruins of this once famous temple and built stable, for his
horses and cattle. Kosloski's ranch had at one time been a famous eating
station, noted for its profusion of fine mountain trout caught from the
Rio Pecos River which ran near the cabin. On this famous ranch four
miles east of the Pecos River, the Texas Rangers fought their fight with
the Union soldiers and were whipped. Gone are those old days, gone are
the old people, gone are the bones of the soldiers which have bleached
upon the ruins of the Old Trail. Silence reigns supremely over the once
famous ranch, broken occasionally by the screams of the locomotives as
they whiz by on the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad, puffing,
screeching and rumbling up the steep grades of the Glorietta Mountains.

W. H. RYUS.

THE END.





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