The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 51, July 1947 - April, 1948 Page: 12
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Soon they became acquainted with the fence-cutters, whom Aten
described as a hard lot, including small cowmen, ranch hands,
and thieves. Aten bought dynamite and began making bombs
to string along the fences. He was told to desist and to return
to Austin, but grapevine reports of the bombs were enough to
halt the wire-cutting.34
In the same year, R. A. Davis of near-by Ellis County placed
a four-strand barbed-wire fence around a thousand-acre tract,
only to have it snipped in 3,500 places within two days. The
cutters worked systematically, removing two panels of every
three, around the whole pasture. Davis promptly had the wire
spliced and replaced, despite threats that, if he did, his fence
would be cut again, his grass burned, and his tanks emptied of
water. None of these threats, however, was carried out."
At Boerne in 1889, W. G. Hughes offered a hundred dollar
reward for information that would lead to the imprisonment of
those who had cut the Hamilton pasture on the Bandera road.
In Uvalde County in 1893, a young county judge, John N.
Garner, asked for "about three good Rangers" to come to catch
marauders who were cutting fences. In Brown County in
1898, men who signed themselves White Cappers burned pas-
tures, cut many fences, and threatened with death those who
replaced the wire. Their letters warned that stock would be
poisoned and homes dynamited. On one occasion they rode up
in daylight to a group repairing a fence and, pushing the muzzles
of their guns against the men, threatened them with extinction
if they continued."6 As late as 1939, the 1884 law against fence-
cutting was invoked in Dallas County, in a complaint from near
Fence-cutting in other states was less extensive and less spec-
tacular than in Texas, but instances were reported from many
parts of the Great Plains and the Rocky Mountains, particularly
from New Mexico, Colorado, and Wyoming. In the Dakota
atSergeant Ira Aten, letters to Captain L. P Sieker, quartermaster of the Frontier
Battalion, 1888, in Adjutant General's Papers, 'State Archives, Austin, Texas.
a5Ross W. Davis of Waxahachie, Texas, grandson of R. A. Davis, letter, Decem-
ber 3, 1945.
a6Walter Prescott Webb, The Texas Rangers (Boston, 1935), 426-428.
a7Dallas Morning News, January 31, 1939.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 51, July 1947 - April, 1948, periodical, 1948; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101119/m1/30/: accessed June 25, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.