Stage Stand Fight at Van Horn's Well

    During January or February 1862, about fifty savages charged and stormed the Stage Stand at Van Horn's well. Wm. Hope and four Mexicans were present to defend the premises. The Stage Stand was a rock structure and the roof covered with dirt. The mules were kept in rock pens immediately behind the rock building, and the two front rooms connected by a large hall. The savages made a dash through this hallway for the mules, and two of their number killed. The warriors then broke loose the dirt roofs and fired the rafters. Hope and his four Mexican companions were forced to flee. But Hope told them not to fire until it became necessary, and to lie flat on the ground when closely crowded. When they pursued these tactics, the savages would circle and fall back, and in this manner retreated several miles before the Indians withdrew. Wm. Hope then sent the Mexicans to Fort Davis to notify the soldiers, while he himself circled around the Indians to meet the upper stage, which was coming from the west, and which he met before it struck the Indians.

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


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