Michael has a BA in History & American Studies and an MSc in American History from the University of Edinburgh. He comes from a proud military family and has spent most of his career as an educator in the Middle East and Asia. His passion is travel, and he seizes any opportunity to share his experiences in the most immersive way possible, whether at sea or on the land.

Palo Pinto County, Texas

    About 1864, Houston Bevers, Allen, Jack and Ben Caruthers, and, perhaps, one or two additional cowboys were batching on Keechi, about three miles northeast of the present town of Graford, and about two hundred yards northeast of the Huse Bevers ranch-house, which still stands. During the dark hours of night, a barking dog seemed to be considerably alarmed. So Allen Caruthers, who was awakened by the noise, stepped out on the porch to ascertain, if possible, what was causing the disturbance. Nothing could be seen, so Allen rubbed his sleepy eyes and returned to bed. But next morning when daylight came, some of the boys discovered an arrow sticking in the wooden water bucket, which sat on a shelf very near the door. An abundance of Indian signs were also discovered. No doubt, when Allen Caruthers started back through the door, an Indian missed his mark only by a narrow margin.

    These ranch quarters belonged to Geo. Bevers at the time. But the premises were deeded to Houston Bevers, his son, who erected the Stone ranch-house that still stands near the Bever's Graveyard.

    Note: Author personally interviewed: Mrs. H.G. Taylor, sister of Houston Bevers, and Mrs. Huse Bevers, both of whom were living in Palo Pinto County at the time, and often heard their brother and husband and the Caruthers boys relate the story.

It was about the year 1866 that Geo. R. Bevers, one of the first settlers of Palo Pinto County, discovered an Indian attempting to break open the locked door of a smokehouse made of logs, which stood about thirty feet behind his dwelling. Mr. Bevers lived near the old Flat Rock Crossing of Big Keechi, about three miles east of the present town of Graford. He took deliberate aim at the Indian, and when the flash of his gun echoed against the silent walls of night, and alone the luxurious Keechi bottoms, the Indian, who may have been wounded, vanished like a dream.

    Note: Author personally interviewed: Mrs. H.G. Taylor, who at this time, was a grown and unmarried daughter of Mr. Bevers.

    During 1868, he lived near where the Bever's home now stands, about three miles east of the present town of Graford. During the dark hours of night, the Indians, who were concealed under the live oak trees near the well, southwest of the house, were blating like a distressed calf that had been caught by wolves, no doubt, for the purpose of decoying someone out, and to add another scalp to their list of trophies. But "Grandpa" Bevers was too wise for them. He took his gun, slipped out on the porch, and shot in the direction of the noise. When he did, the Indians instantly fired at the blaze of his gun. So "Grandpa" decided he did not care to kill any more Indians just at that time, and returned to the inside of his dwelling.

    Note: Author interviewed Mrs. H.G. Taylor, a daughter of G.R. Bevers, and Mrs. Huse Bevers, a daughter-in-law.

The above stories are from the book, The West Texas Frontier, by Joseph Carroll McConnell.

Join the discussion

Further reading

Recent Comments