Sunday, January 4, 2015

Crime and Punishment in Early Kerr County as Reported in the Newspapers, 1871-1890

Crime and Punishment in Early Kerr County as Reported in the Newspapers.
These are reports of crime and punishment in Kerrville as reported in other newspapers in Texas between 1871 and 1890. During this period Kerrville had a newspaper, but we do not have copies of it.

Galveston Daily News, 12/21/1871
A difficulty about the payment of rent, resulted in a man named Benman being stabbed by one named Dalton.  [
KGS note: This case is in the District Court records in Kerrville. H. Clay Dalton was charged with, and found guilty of, attempted murder against Andrew W. Bowman. He spent time in the State Penitentiary.

Galveston Daily News, 11/29/1872
The San Antonio Herald says that a man named McWeston was killed a day or two since at Kerrville, by a man named Spencer.  The particulars we have not yet learned.
KGS note: This is Malachi "Mac" Weston, who died Nov. 20, 1872, in Kerrville. He is buried at Mountain View Cemetery.

Galveston Daily News, 9/23/1873
The special dispatch from our San Antonio correspondent depicts an alarming state of affairs in Kerr county. For three months or more our columns have contained reports of the most flagrant outrages committed by a band of outlaws on the peaceable residents of that section. The citizens of Kerrville and vicinity have organized time and again against this gang, and have followed them into the mountains several times and shot and hanged a number of them.  So much of their time has been taken up by these excursions that they have become tired of them and have been reluctantly compelled to ask the aid of the commanding general of the Department of Texas in breaking up this lawless gang, and either killing them off or driving then out of the country. General Angur, consequently, proposed stationing a company of cavalry in that section until these disturbances are effectually quelled.

Galveston Daily News, 7/6/1873
San Antonio, July 5.
"A Herald special of today has the following, 'Last Monday two five cattle drivers went to Schreiner's store, at Kerrville, got drunk, and killed one citizen.  The citizens, who are minute men, immediately assembled, charged the desperados, killed five, drove eight into a block house [unclear] miles above Kerrville, where they are besieged and refusing to surrender.  Citizens are trying how starvation will work on them.  The other twelve escaped.'"

San Antonio Daily Express, 8/23/1877
A man named Douglas was arrested at Kerrville last week for stealing a horse from Mr. Lafayette Nicholls.

Tuesday night of last week an unsuccessful attempt to break out of the Kerrville jail was made by the prisoners therein.

Burnet Bulletin, 8/18/1878
from a letter titled "Burnet to San Antonio".
"Arriving at Kerrville I found a considerable town, in the midst of a fine country.  Here I found the sheriff and citizens excited over an attempted escape, on the preceding night, of the prisoners in jail.  A large hole had been made in the jail wall, and the prisoners were nearly out when discovered."

Galveston Daily News 10/7/1880
Report from the Kerrville Frontiersman:  Several soldiers were here Monday, in pursuit of a quartermaster's sergeant and a private, who had deserted from Fort Clark.  They had embezzled $250, a wagon and two horses from friends, and also stole two government mules.  The fellows passed through here Saturday, taking the river road....Numbers of wagons pass through every week loaded with settlers for the counties above.

Galveston Daily News 8/4/1884
Neport from Kerr County
Bandera Bugle: Mike Harrington, who was shot by Howard in Kerrville last week, died on Wednesday...Two prisoners escaped from the Kerrville jail on Tuesday by making a hole through the wall.

Galveston Daily News 7/14/1886
Tom Baker and John Callaghan, the former convicted of murder at Kerrville and awarded a penalty of twenty-five years penal servitude, and the later convinced for a similar offense, at the same place, and sentenced to service five years, were brought in tonight from there by the penitentiary contractor en route for the penitentiary  He states that in order to avoid having his prisoners taken from him by a mob he was compelled to get them away stealthily at night from the jail.

San Antonio Daily Light 11/15/1890
Moulton, the Forger, Caught Napping and Gets Nabbed.
Harry Moulton, who rode off from San Antonio in a stolen horse was captured in Kerrville and returned to San Antonio on the evening train.
KGS note: There is a long, entertaining description of what let up to the arrest in this issue.

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