Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown. Page: 127 of 894
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INDIAN WARS AND PIONEERS OF TEXAS.
six or eight weeks, and was then enabled to reach
his home, where he in due time recovered, as proud
of his heroic wife as he was thankful for their preservation
through such apparently hopeless dangers.
A party, accompanied by little Stockman, went
out during the succeeding night to recover the
body of little James Gracey, but were unable to
find it. They camped at the spot indicated by
Stockman, and when daylight came found it in
their midst, and then realized the cause of their
failure in the fact that the nude body, lying among
the white rocks, was not distinguishable in the
night time. The remains were conveyed to his
stricken parents and family, and interred in the
presence of a sympathizing concourse.
Stockman now lives in San Antonio, but has been
much about Dallas, and only a few days since
recounted to me his version of this bloody episode
in our border history. It will be of interest to
many old residents of East and Southwest Texas to
know that he is a grandson of Elder Garrison
Greenwood, a sterling old Baptist preacher, who
settled in Nacogdoches County in 1833, and moved
west in 1846, finally to die in Lampasas County.
Raid into Cooke County, in December, 1863.
On the 22d and 23d days of December, 1863,
occurred one of the most bloody and destructive
Indian raids to which our poorly protected frontier
was subject during and for some years after the
late war. At this time Col. James Bourland, one
of the bravest and truest of all our frontiersmen,
coinmanded a regiment of Confederate troops with
his headquarters at Gainesville, but at the time of
this particular raid he was in Bonham, on official
business with Gen. Henry E. McCulloch. Col.
Bourland had to protect with his regiment such an
extended reach of frontier that he was compelled
to scatter his troops in small squads far apart, and
for this reason it was impossible to concentrate any
considerable number of his troops at any given
point in time to repel such an invasion as this.
At this time Capt. Win. C. Twitty, a brave and
true soldier, was in command of the few troops of
Col. Bourland's regiment, that then hal)pened to
be at and near Gainesville not exceeding fifty or
seventy-five in number.
At the same time Capt. Jno. T. Rowland, a
brave and experienced Indian fighter, commanded
a company of Texas State troops. Capt. Rowland
was in camp at Red River Station, in Montague
County, and was the first to hear of the raid. The
Indians crossed Red river into Texas about 2
o'clock in the afternoon of the 22d of December,
1863, a few miles below Red River Station,
and at once commenced their fiendish work
of murder and burning. They first came upon the
house of Mr. Anderson. They killed his wife, and
left her with her feet so near a fire in the yard as
to roast her feet. At the residence of Wesley
Willet they killed Mr. Willet and one daughter,
while his wife and another daughter made their
escape. They burned and plundered Mr. Willet's
house, and then came upon the house of Mr. G. L.
Hatfield. Hatfield and his family made their escape,
but they had fled only a short distance before
they looked back and saw their home in flames.
After taking such things as they wanted the Indians
set fire to the house. Settlements at this time
along the Red river border were quite spare and
what was then known as the Wallace settlement, in
Sadler's bend in Cooke County, was the next settlement
below Hatfield's and was some twelve or
fifteen miles distant. The Indians started in the
direction of this settlement when they left the Hatfield
place, but they were closely pursued by Capt.
Rowland with about twenty-five men. The Indians
were between two and three hundred strong.
Before reaching the Wallace settlement the Indians
recrossed Red river and this led Capt. Rowland to
believe that they had abandoned the raid, as it was
their custom to make these sudden inroads upon
the settlements and then make their escape under
cover of night. Capt. Rowland and his men had
ridden very rapidly
the Indians had so much
the start of them, that their horses were
completely wearied out, so he thought it was
best to turn into Capt. Wallace's and rest
his men and horses for the night, and renew
the pursuit early next morning. The news of
the raid and the massacre of the Willet family
with the usual exaggerations, had already been
carried to the Wallace settlement, by some terrified
settler, and when Capt. Rowland reached Wallace's
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Brown, John Henry. Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown., book, 1880~; Austin, Tex.. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth6725/m1/127/: accessed August 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .