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.

Coryell County, Texas

    Accounts slightly differ concerning this episode, but it occurred sometime during 1864, or early in 1865, and will be reported at this time.

    Samuel Graham was a younger son of Gideon Graham, who lived on Brown's Creek, about 12 miles south of Gatesville, near the present Gatesville and Killeen road, and not far distant from the Sugar Loaf Mountain. Early one morning, young Sam Graham, who was about twelve years of age, was sent to search for stock. He was about two miles from his home. As he rode leisurely along on his pony, several Indians dashed upon him, and made little Sam their captive, took his pony, placed him on a horse behind an Indian, and started toward the western wilds.

    They had not gone a great distance, however, when some of the crimes of these unscrupulous criminals of the plains, became known to the local pioneers, who were soon in pursuit. The Indians were encountered, perhaps somewhere in the present Lampasas County. During the running fight, with the savages in the lead, young Sam attempted to jump from behind the Indian, but was caught by the arm. A few moments later, however, when the red men were being closely crowded by the citizens, one brutal barbarian thrust a lance in little Sam's body and threw him in a nearby thicket of brush.

    Although rescued, he only lived about two days, but before his death, related some of his experiences while an Indian captive. He stated that although the savages had an abundance of venison and buffalo meat, they only offered him horse flesh for food, and attempted to force him to drink water from a horse's stomach, which had been killed only a short time before. But this dastardly need cost the life of at least one savage.

    Note: The author interviewed Geo. Crawford and others who were living in Coryell and adjoining counties at the time.

    Further Ref.: 70 years n Texas, by J.M. Franks; and Wilbarger's Indian Depredations in Texas.

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

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