History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families Page: 84
84 HISTORY OF TEXAS.
they helped in the protection of the white
frontier, as they furnished from fifty to a
hundred warriors for ranging service. For
example, in the spring of 1h58, a band of
these went out with the Texan rangers on an
expedition against the Coinanches, and fought
But alas! this tender bud of civilization
was nipped by white people! The rougher
ones, inconsiderate and over-zealous, continued
to encroach upon them, until they were driven
entirely away. In 1858 the number of
these natives thus reclaimed from barbaric
life was 1,483; and among this number, especially
of the Comanches; some were addicted
to horse-stealing, and sometimes would
participate with the wilder tribes in general
predatory incursions. Some white men even
assisted them in these nefarious transactions.
The crimes of the few had to
be visited on all, such is the inconsiderateness
and haste of human nature
generally. In the counties adjoining the
reservations many of the whites were so
hasty as to believe that all, or nearly all, the
depredations in their neighborhood were cominitted
by the Indians at these reservations,
and they accordingly determined to get rid
of them some way. In 1858 several parties
of these innocent Indians went hunting outside
of their reservations, as they had often
been permitted to do by the agents on
former occasions, and a number of roughs
among the whites determined on a cruel
massacre. In a bend of the Brazos, just above
the mouth of Keochi creek, a party of Indians,-men,
women and children,-encamped,
for several weeks, peaceably engaged
in hunting. On December 21, between forty
and fifty men, mostly of Erath county, assembled
in conclave on Bosque river to consult
upon a general extermination policy.
They appointed a committee to organize a
company, the command of which was given
to Peter Garland. Then the order was given
to kill any Indians found south of Cedar
creek. The company proceeded to the Indian
camp on the Brazos, which at the time contained
eight men, eight women and eleven
children. Approaching stealthily early in
the morning in December, while their victims
were sound asleep, they poured into them a
volley of buckshot and rifle-balls. Seven
were killed outright, of whom three were
women! Three men, two women and three
children were severely wounded, and nearly
all the rest more or less inj ured. The wounded
succeeded in escaping to the reservation.
This atrocity naturally caused great excitement.
A proclamation issued by the governor,
denouncing the act and warning all persons
against joining organizations for hostilities
against the friendly Indians, had no effect.
The newspapers published prejudicial
stories and inflammatory philippics on the
subject, and the citizens at various points
held meetings and resolved that the Indians
should be removed. In the adjoining counties
bands of armed citizens were organized,
who spent much time scouting around the
reservations. Civilized Indians found outside
the reservation limits, it was said, could not
be distinguished from the savage ones, and
would therefore have to suffer their fate. The
removal of the reservation Indians was peremptorily
demanded, under threats of extermination.
In vain did the agents endeavor
to avert the coming blow, and their efforts in
this direction even gave offense to the Citizens
of the frontier, who, on April 25, 18591
boldly demanded their immediate resignation.
All the agents could do then was to aeqi.esce
as soon as they could safely remove. the
Indians to a better place; but before they ha4
-HISTORY OP TEXAS.
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Lewis Publishing Company, publisher. History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families, book, 1893; Chicago. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth29785/m1/89/ocr/: accessed October 21, 2016), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .