Killing of Bob Lackey and Capture of McLeroy Children

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.

Montague County, Texas

    During May or June of 1868, the Indians killed Bob Lackey and captured Natt and Dara McLeroy while they were gathering wild dewberries about four hundred yards from the home of their father Jno. R. McLeroy. Mr. McLeroy lived in Montague County near the present town of Forestburg. He recovered his children, who were about eight and ten years old, two or three months after they were captured. But as usual was compelled to pay the savages a high reward for their dastardly deeds.

    Note: Author personally interviewed W.A. (Bud) Morris, who helped follow the Indians after the children were captured, and others who lived in that section at the time.

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

Second Story

Published by Levi Perryman, Forestburg, Texas, 1919:

    In the spring of 1868 another band of Indians made their appearance. They killed Bob Lacky, a young man, a nephew of John Muckleroy. They captured three of the Muckleroy children - Nathaniel, Dora and Ellen. The Muckleroy's were my neighbors and I heard the shooting and screaming. I saddled up and hurried to his house and on arriving found the children gone, young Lacky killed and all of Muckleroy's horses stolen. Muckleroy and wife, afoot, were following in the
    direction the Indians had taken. The mother was screaming. I soon overtook them.

    Jim White had joined me. Passing the parents in a gallop we reached a rise, from which we could see the group of Indians about half a mile away to the north. White turned back, saying he would get more men. I went on, determined to do my best to rescue the children. I took the wrong trail after having lost sight of them - a trail that had been made earlier in the day. The trail I followed led east and I decided that they were heading for Clear Creek Valley. I rode hurriedly to Wash Williams' and Newberry's and got started the report about the Indians. These men were among a few settlers in Willa Walla Valley. I then hurried back to my wife, whom I had left almost wild with terror.

    A Mrs. Paschal was living at my house then; she was afterward killed by the Indians in the Kenon massacre. I found the women hiding, first in the sorghum patch and then in the house.

    Some of the citizens struck the trail and followed it some distance, but the Indians were not overtaken. Muckleroy succeeded, with the help of friends, in buying his children back from the Indians several months later.

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