Massacre of Members of the Lewis Family

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.

Jack County, Texas

    Two brothers named Lewis, one whose whiskers were red and the other black, together with the latter's family, stopped at Ham's stage stand, fourteen miles from Jacksboro. The wife of the black whiskered brother was a Mexican, and the party had just arrived from some point in the west. The Lewis family then located on a survey about twelve or fourteen miles northeast of Jacksboro.

    It became necessary for the black whiskered brother to go to the above place, so he left the other in charge of his family.

    Before he went away, the former was told by his brother that if he found his family massacred by Indians, when he returned, he would find him also. The Indians really came and the occupants of the house barred the door. The warriors fired the building, and as the red whiskered Lewis, and the wife of his brother, together with her children, were forced to flee, each was shot down by the savages. Only one child successfully made its escape. The other children were either killed or carried into captivity. Moses Damron lived only a short distance away, and could hear the screams of the Indians and the citizens. The following morning, when he walked over toward the home of the Lewis family in search of his horse, he discovered what had happened. Only the chimney of the house remained to relate the story. The child that was saved was perhaps in Jacksboro with his father. After this tragedy, the two moved to parts unknown.

    Author interviewed Joseph Fowler, James Wood, B.L. Ham, A.M. Lasater, and others who lived in Jack County at this time.

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

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