Rigman Bryant and African

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.

Somervell County, Texas

    It was about 1864 that the Indians attacked Rigman Bryant, who lived on so-called "Squaw Creek". He was out fox hunting with his dogs. Mr. Bryant's son had ridden the favorite horse to the home of a neighbor. So this necessitated the former's riding an inferior animal. Mr. Bryant was unarmed. When he had only gone a short distance from his home, approximately fifteen Indians suddenly dashed upon him, and stuck a spear through his body, killing him almost instantly. He was then scalped and stripped of his clothes. One of his dogs was also wounded. Late in the same day W.C. Walters, Silar Scarborough, and an African, who were returning from Goather's Mill to their home on so-called "Squaw Creek", discovered a caballada of stolen horses and suspicioned that Indians were near. They only went a short distance farther when two or three savages were seen. So the three, realizing the Indians had set a trap, made a dash toward the nearby cedar breaks and were followed by a large number of savages. The white men made their escape, but the African who was riding a mule, was caught and killed. The old darkie, however, lived for about two weeks after he was wounded, and stated that the Indians tried to persuade him to join them, but when he refused they thrust a spear through his body.

    These Indians were soon pursued by citizens from the Robinson and Paluxy settlement. The body of Mr. Bryant was found during the same day he was killed. A messenger was then dispatched to the so-called "Squaw Creek" community so the citizens could continue to follow the Indians. During the morning of the following day, O.P. Hutchison, Larkin Prestidge, and others, brought in Mr. Bryant's body. It was still being guarded by his faithful wounded dog, who refused to relinquish the possession of his master. The daring exploits of the savages were soon discovered by others, and it was not long until a second party was on their trail, and encountered the savages near Mesquite Flats, between the Paluxy and so-called "Squaw Creek", about two miles above the present city of Glen Rose. A short fight followed and Daniel McBride received an arrow wound above his eye. After the Indians were chased about six miles and some stolen horses recovered, the fight ended.

    Ref.: History of Hood County, by Thomas T. Ewell.

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

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