Citizens Charge Indians Near the Present Town of Cisco

    While District Court was in session, during Feb. 1872, the Indians made a raid through Erath County, and stole horses in the vicinity of Stephenville. The savages took ponies from C. E. Ferguson, Jerome McAlester, and others, and then started toward the Northwest. Several local citizens followed. Some of them, however, returned, but J. H. Edwards, Jerome McAlester, George Keith, John Beale, Hezekiah Bellomy, Geo. Hill and L. F. Roberts numbered among those who continued to follow the trail. At McGough Springs, in Eastland County, they were joined by W. C. McGough and Albert Henning. When the handful of citizens reached the vicinity of the present town of Cisco, they ran on approximately twenty Indians, barbecuing a beef. J. H. Edwards and Hezekiah Bellomy went on a hill to act as spies. L. F. Roberts was in the valley below, and discovered a horseman riding swiftly up the valley. Soon the Indians were contacted but one or two men held back, and were not in the fight, which lasted only a short time. Albert Henning was wounded, and when J. H. Edwards went to his rescue, the same Indian that shot Henning, fired and hit Edwards' gun. But J. H. Edwards shot an Indian afoot. This savage went crawling away on his hands and knees, and other Indians rushed to his rescue. He then fired into the group of Indians and when he did, they scattered. No doubt, at least two or three Indians were wounded. This was verified by Indian graves, found not a great distance away, many months after the fight was over. W. C. McGough, an old and experienced Indian fighter, soon came up and advised the citizens they had better pursue the Indians no further, for they were in the timber, and greatly outnumbered the citizens.

    The citizens recovered the barbecued beef, and also found some Indian Moccasins, and other articles left at their camp ground. Furthermore, the savages dropped at least a great portion of their stolen horses, but the citizens were not aware of this fact at the time. The horses were not found until many months later.

    Note: Author interviewed: J. H. Edwards; L. F. Roberts; and W. C. McGough, who were in the fight, and took part in the expedition; Ike Roberts, a brother of L. F. Roberts; and C. E. Ferguson and others.

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


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