The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963

Diamond's Account of the Great Hanging

he did not clearly see any "good to the country" in the move-
ment suggested for his endorsement and cooperation. He could
see no "good to his country" in attacking and sacking the town
with fire and sword, and the killing of neighbors, the "rebel
rascals" designated as objects of revenge. Therefore, he "made no
reply and left him."
After introducing himself to Dr. Henry Childs at the sugges-
tion of citizens heretofore mentioned, McCurley discovered that
the oath taken before him led him on one step further into the
secrets of the order. He was to "obey all orders of the Society."
He then seems inclined to [have] avoid[ed] any further oath-
taking, and introduced a system of inquiry based upon the infor-
mation already obtained in a manner worthy of the most erudite
and cunning barrister. It was at least creditable to a plain and
unpretending countryman.
The strength of the order rapidly spreading was put down by
Childs at thousands, which he probably thought sufficient to
guarantee any member against capture or punishment. When
asked the names of those in this section belonging to the society,
Childs very properly declined to give them, fearing no doubt that
McCurley would recognize the names of many with whom he
would scorn to associate with as "Union men." This dodge doubt-
less seduced many into this order who, at the first blush, would
not have consented to have attached themselves to the organiza-
tion if all the plans had been submitted and explained to them.
That "Union Men" were thus approached who emphatically de-
clined [to join] cannot be denied; but it seems that when once
in, they accorded their active assistance and full fellowship with
the "Order" in the vilest and darkest transactions.
But [the joiner] had still another step to take-"to protect and
defend each other to the death."
The suggestion that Jim Lane of Kansas, or Sam Houston of
Texas, would be inaugurated in Austin at an early day was a piece
of deception palpably as transparent as it was ungenerous and
unjust to the name and now the memory of the great, and distin-
guished lamented General Sam Houston.
The association of these two names together, the one infamous
and the other illustrous, was done for a two-fold purpose: First, to

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101196/. Accessed August 22, 2014.