The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 44, July 1940 - April, 1941 Page: 56
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
the middle '70's the advancing Anglo-American frontier was
overtaking the Plains Indians in their last retreat.
In 1874 General Ranald Mackenzie led a column of troops
out of Fort Griffin, then a westernmost point on the Texas
frontier, onto the Llano Estacado and into Tule and Palo Duro
Canyons, where he fought engagements with Indian renegades.
After his fight in the Palo Duro, Mackenzie scoured much of
the Llano Estacado in search of Indian hostiles. The year
following, 1875, Colonel W. R. Shafter patrolled much of the
region of the southern Llano. These two punitive expeditions
did much toward removing the Comanche and Kiowa menace
in the Plains area, making it possible for buffalo hunters to
extend the range of their slaughter with renewed confidence.
Every buffalo killed meant that an Indian was driven onto a
reservation or faced with starvation-a fact which the Indian
realized more deeply and quickly than did his white adversaries.
The Indians, however, were not yet completely vanquished,
for these were Plains Indians whose fathers had for more than
three hundred years successfully resisted all attempts to sub-
In December, 1876, the Comanche chief, "Old Nigger Horse,"
with 170 Comanche warriors slipped away from the Indian
Territory and led his band to the foot of the Staked Plains, in
the vicinity of the present Post, Texas. From there his braves
committed numbers of depredations upon buffalo hunters en-
camped east of the Llano Estacado. The result was that a
great fight took place between the buffalo hunters and Nigger
Horse's band of "Quohada" Comanches in what was called Big
After this fight Captain Phillip Ludwell Lee of Company
G, 10th U. S. Cavalry, with scouts and troops went onto the
Staked Plains and engaged Old Nigger Horse in a running
fight in the present northeastern Cochran County. The chief
was killed, but most of his band scattered like a covey of Mex-
2This fight appears to have been in the present Yellow House Canyon,
in the southeastern corner of Lubbock County. Place names as used in
this article are based on The Map of the State of Texas, A. F. Hassen
(cartographer), Department of Interior (U. S. G. S.). For interesting
commentaries on many of these place names see Frank P. Hill, "Plains
Names," in Panhandle-Plains Historical Review, X, pp. 36-47.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 44, July 1940 - April, 1941, periodical, 1941; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146052/m1/64/: accessed February 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.