The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 38, July 1934 - April, 1935 Page: 20
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
would not support him, and Houston, in spite of a small bounty
from the Association, dropped out for the same reason. Sheriffs
G. W. Arrington and Al Gentry, of Mobeetie and Clarendon, de-
clined to stand for re-election in 1884, and were persuaded to con-
tinue in office only on assurance of bonuses from the cowmen, $500
to the first and $1000 to the other, one-half of the latter being paid
by Goodnight alone. Then Woodman was induced to run against
Dills upon assurance of a bonus of $1500, which was kept up for
nearly a year and a half, but suspended some months before the
trials at Clarendon."3
The dangers of the system, no matter how high-minded and
honest the original intention, come in geometrical progression with
the complexities of a settled social order and varied industry. The
policy is generally and rightfully looked upon with suspicion, and,
in cases of conflict, the honesty of the contributor is always im-
pugned. Obviously, in the case of the Texas Plains, it was the
choice between incompetence in office and unrestricted operations
of the lawless as one horn of the dilemma, and security of life and
property with dangers of partisan officials as the other. For these
cowmen the dilemma was short-lived, and the facts clearly show
that the results of their choice were wise and good; the direct
charges, insinuations and innuendoes of the State were clearly
And now, except for trifles, the Willis case was almost closed.
The citizens of Clarendon addressed a memorial to the Legislature,
charging that the trial was "instituted through jealousy and spite"
in part due to Templeton; Judge F. M. Patton issued a statement
through the Mobeetie Panhandle republished in the Austin States-
man at Goodnight's expense, arguing Willis' vindication by his
people in the last election and old Bill Koogle, the buffalo hunter
and fencing contractor, came out with a stinging protest against
the investigation in general and Browning and Houston in par-
ticular, claiming that
Browning has done a great injustice to the Panhandle people; not
for what he has said, but for what he has not said; his silence is
most eloquent. He could do Judge Willis a great deal of good by
breaking down the uncalled for prejudice that exists against him
and the cattlemen. I would like to see Senator Houston come
33Goodnight to J. E. H., September 2, 1927; Senate Journal, as cited,
33, 49, 60, 69, 73, 78, 97.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 38, July 1934 - April, 1935, periodical, 1935; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117143/m1/28/: accessed August 15, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.