Elm Creek Raid Road Trip

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.

A little further west from the Brit Johnson marker, Captain Barry and his Rangers had one of the greatest of their many victories. Head northeast to Olney where you are just south of the Battle of Little Wichita where Kiowa Kicking Bird brilliantly routed the Sixth Cavalry. Continue to the southeast to the Salt Creek Fight marker on 114, there Cureton's Rangers, including W.C. "Uncle Billy" Kutch, fought one of their bloodiest battles.

From there, drop to Jean and turn south on 1769; pass Cottonwood Springs then on to Brit Johnson's marker.

Catch 380 West into the country covered by the Cross Plains Road Trip Map. A short way out you will encounter the marker for the Elm Creek Raid. Turn south on 283 and you'll be just east of Robert E. Lee's old command post, Camp Cooper and just north of Fort Griffin.

On July 1864, Reuben Johnson, Ewell Proffitt, and Rias Carrollton were branding cattle at the old Fitzpatrick Ranch when seventy-five Indians charged them. The three young men were only able to retreat about three-fourths of a mile before being murdered.

After killing these three, five of the Indians appeared at the Hamby Ranch. The citizens there presented their guns and scared off the Indians but not before they successfully drove off the horses.

On May 10th, 1860, Conrad Newhous and his Mexican employee, Martinas, were searching for stock about a hundred and fifty or two hundred yards from the house. While crossing the creek, his horse made a sudden jump because he could smell the Indians who were hidden nearby. The two were thrown from the horse and were killed by the savages.

Northernmost story on site, Harmison, Cole and Will Duncan were building their houses about seventy five yards apart. The white wives were working in their incomplete houses and Lindy Harmison, the black servant, was attacked and killed by raiders near the river. The savages then moved towards Will's place, who was out with his brother-in-law, Bob Mathis, driving in milk cows. Cole Duncan feared they would be killed so he ran out into the yard with his gun, waving his hat. This movement made the Indians believe the soldiers were coming, so they quickly dashed away.

In 1862, Hol and James Clark were out staking a horse when they viewed the form of an Indian in the dim skylight forty steps away. Hol fired and killed the horse the Indian was riding. When they reached the spot where the horse lay dead, they found the Indian leaning against a tree and screaming almost every breath. He was, no doubt, calling for the aid of his comrades. The brothers then went home for help and when they returned, the Indian was surrounded by other savages. They returned home for fear of being ambushed in the dark.

During 1867, the same year as the Salt Creek Fight, some of the same cowboys had several encounters on the Peveler Ranch with Indians.

Henry Eberson and John O. Allen left the Rivers' Ranch on Salt Creek Prairie to help hold a herd of horses and cattle. They found themselves in a running fight with a band of warriors, part of which extended to the very front gate of the ranch house. It resulted in Eberson being stripped, scalped and wounded in fourteen places. He was still alive but only lived for four days afterwards.

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