True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young. Page: 240
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240 TRUE STORIES OF OLD
a grocery store, he was not content with a few cigars, a plug
or two of tobacco, a box of sardines or a bottle of pickles; none
of that kind of burglarizing for him. He took the whole works.
One night he broke into Dan Huebners' grocery store, corner
of Preston Avenue and Travis Street, and he and Pompey loaded
everything in the store in a two-horse wagon and drove off with
it. It must be remembered that the stores in those days were
small affairs and none of them carried big stocks as they do
now. Of course, Kirkendall was suspected and officers searched
his place, but they found nothing, for he had carefully concealed
everything in the woods far away from home. Both he and
Pompey were arrested, but as there was no absolute proof against
them they were released again. Sheriff Tom Hogan and City
Marshal Bob Boyce tried to frighten Pompey into making a confession,
but soon had to give it up, for he was not one of the
scary kind and only laughed at them and held his tongue.
But this success in robbing Huebner's store led to their un.
doing. One night Kirkendall and Pompey came to town with
their wagon and broke into the store of Mr. Cornelius Ennis,
which stood where the office of the Western Union Telegraph
Company is now located. They took what groceries they wanted
and then picked up the iron safe, which was not a very large
one, and loaded that on their wagon. They took their plunder
out near their home, dug a big hole on the bank of the bayou,
burfed the safe, and left it there to be opened at their leisure.
The next morning when Mr. Ennis discovered his loss, he called
in the sheriff and city marshal and they did not waste any time
by looking elsewhere, but went right out and brought Kirkendall
and Pompey in and placed them in jail. Then they gave Pompey
a taste of whatmight be called tbe third degree. They ,ot
a rope, took him out in the jail yard and swore they would
hang him if he did not tell them all about the robbery. Pompey
really believed they were going to hang him, but he did not
weaken, but he did something worse, he made a blunder. He
told them he was not going to say a word and if they wanted :o
know where that safe was they would have to go to Mr. Kirkendall
for the information. Now, as neither Kirkendall nor Pomnpey
had been told what they were arrested for, when Pompey
made his break the officers knew they had the right men. They
went out to Beauchamp Springs and made a thorough search of
the house, woods and bayou, and they found the safe where
it had been buried by Kirkendall and Pompey. Kirkendall was
indicted, tried and convicted, but I don't know what was done
with Pompey. Kirkendall was sentenced to a long term in the
penitentiary. When the time came to take him to Huntsville
he was placed in the middle of a big wagon with two guards in
front and two behind, and one riding on each side of the wagon.
They knew he was a desperate man and the head of a band
of outlaws of unknown strength, and it was feared an attempted
rescue would be made.
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Young, Samuel Oliver. True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young., book, 1913; Galveston, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth24646/m1/240/: accessed June 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .