Elijah Skidmore


Elijah Skidmore was one of the first settlers to locate in the vicinity of old Fort Belknap. Mr. Skidmore, at that time, lived about one mile north of the present town of Eliasville, and September 14, 1855, was out about one-half mile, cutting poles to floor a crib. Prior to his departure from home, he ordered his negro to bring the ox-team and ox-wagon. But Mr. Skidmore was alone, unarmed, and attacked by the Indians before the negro arrived. The Indians stripped off all of Mr. Skidmore's clothes but his shoes, wounded his body about seventeen times and took his scalp. Almost invariably the Indians left a sock or shoe on one or both feet. Soon after the ocurrence, the negro came slowly driving the oxen, and it is believed that the cracking of his long ox-whip frightened the Indians away.

Ref.: Prior to writing this section, the author personally interviewed F. M. Peveler, whose brothers, Will and John, were beef contractors at Fort Belknap at the time.

Further Ref.: Rep'ts. of Com. of Indian Affairs 1855; Sec. of War. 1858; corresponded with a granddaughter of Mr. Skidmore.

The above story is from the book, The West Texas Frontier, by Joseph Carroll McConnell.