Kansas State Historical Society.

The Kansas historical quarterly (Volume 26) online

. (page 51 of 59)
Online LibraryKansas State Historical SocietyThe Kansas historical quarterly (Volume 26) → online text (page 51 of 59)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


stakeholder to fork over the rhino under due process of law. Like a cat with its
fur stroked contrarywise, it goes against the old timer's grain to part with his
ducats even when gambling on chance; but when a sure thing is played open and
comes up coppered, the true character of the man floats to the surface, and he
comes to the front with a remarkable display of adamantine cheek seeking to
recover by a process advocated by none and despised by all. Pass him the
cookie.

To which Sheriff Hinkle replied through the columns of the Dodge
City Times, January 5:
To THE EDITOR OF THE TIMES.

Nearly every one supposed that any unpleasant feelings engendered by the
late election were past, and that the "kicking" had been done. It seems, how-
ever, that the editor of the Globe has a tender spot yet, and gives vent to his
pent up feelings in an article entitled "Tenderfoot vs. Old Timer." As I am one
of the parties alluded to in said article, I will say in reply, that a bet was made
between W. J. Howard and myself, and the stakes were placed in the hands of
Dr. S. Galland, who was to hold the amount until the result of the contest was
known; and an agreement was made by the parties betting, both of whom were
to be present when the stakes were to be delivered. Dr. Galland gave up the
stakes on Howard's representing to him that I had declared myself satisfied
and was willing to give up the bet. I never made any such agreement, and I
shall collect the amount staked by me, by due process of law, unless Dr. Galland
or Mr. Howard returns the amount to me. I can bring good witnesses who



COWTOWN POLICE OFFICERS AND GUN FIGHTERS 439

will swear, that by the terms of the bet, I was the winner; and while the law
does not recognize betting, I have good grounds for recovery from the stake-
holder, as I shall demonstrate very soon.

In regard to the allusion to my character, I have no hesitancy in asserting
that my record will compare favorably with that of the editor of the Globe.
While I may not be, strictly speaking, a white dove, what little property I
possess has not been whitened with contraband paint, nor were the window
sashes procured from the Government. In conclusion I will add, that if the
gentleman wants any more of this, I shall be ready and willing to go into further
details. GEO. T. HINKEL.

The poke taken by Hinkle at the editor of the Globe, D. M. Frost,
had reference to Frost's arrest in 1879 for having received stolen
military paint, window sashes, etc. At the time of Hinkle's letter,
the case had not been settled. The section on Bat Masterson will
contain more information on Frost's arrest.

In January Hinkle arrested a jewel thief. The Globe, January 17,
1882, reported:

A JEWELRY DEALER NABBED.

Sheriff Hinkel took in a passenger on the east bound train from Pueblo yes-
terday morning who answered the description of a party that was wanted by
the Pueblo authorities, charged with robbing a jewelry establishment in that
city. The party was taken in by our sheriff and a large amount of jewelry
found in his possession. He will be held here until the proper papers arrive,
when he will be taken back to the city which he so eagerly left.

The Times, March 9, 1882, said: "Geo. T. Hinkle, Sheriff, having
retired from business will devote his entire attention to the duties of
the office of Sheriff. Sheriff Hinkel is an excellent officer/'

Sheriff Hinkle took more prisoners to the penitentiary in June.

The Times, June 15, 1882, reported:

Three men sentenced at the term of the District Court last week, were taken
to the penitentiary at Leavenworth, on Sunday evening, by Sheriff Hinkel,
Under Sheriff Singer and H. P. Myton, County Clerk. These men were charged
with robbery at Pierceville last fall.

In July some of Sheriff Hinkle's prisoners escaped from the county
jail. The Ford County Globe, July 18, 1882, recorded their flight:

PRISONERS BREAK JAIL.

On last Friday afternoon seven out of the eight prisoners incarcerated in
the county jail, made good their escape at a moment when the jail was left
unguarded. The manner in which they made their exit was by digging a trench
underneath the walls of the jail, which was done with a case knife and cold
chisel, making a hole large enough for them to squeeze through and thus gain
their freedom. To accomplish this they were obliged to dig down on the inside
of the prison to get to the level of the foundation from which they took two good
sized rock which gave them sufficient room to pop through and dig up on the
other side of the wall which required the removal of from four and one-half



440 KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY

to five feet of earth over them before they could expect to get a glimpse of the
rays of a July sun. The remaining prisoner who at the time of the break was
down in the city in charge of a deputy to purchase some clothing, informs us
that the work of excavation had been going on for nearly three weeks, that the
earth taken out was carried to different parts of the jail and packed down so
as not to leave any loose dirt exposed about the premises, taking the precaution
to smoothly cover up the entrance of their cave whenever an officer made his
appearance. In this manner they kept their work concealed until the final
break-out was made and their freedom gained.



Under Sheriff Keith, who had charge of the county jail, as a matter of fact
will have to bear the blame and responsibility in the escape of the seven pris-
oners from the county jail last Friday, and that too when he was performing the
major portion of the duties of the office of sheriff. At the time the prisoners
escaped, he was absent from the city on official business, leaving the jail and
prisoners in charge of a deputy, of course. When he returned he found that his
birds had flown, as they had prepared for this break for weeks before hand and
were only waiting for an opportunity when they could find the principal officer
absent, to make the break. Of course Keith will have to bear all the blame and
mortification for trying to do too much, and possibly loose his commission for
his over zealousness in performing all the duties of the office of the sheriff of
the county.



Sheriff Hinkle's spiritual advisor, incarcerated in the county jail for stealing
a cow, left with the balance of the boys.

The county officers made a minor arrest in October which the
Times recorded on October 26, 1882:

Three men, supposed to be sneak thieves were arrested Tuesday by Sheriff
Hinkel and Under Sheriff Singer. In their possession were found some skeleton
keys, a lady's gold watch, big brass watch, one American silver watch, open
face, and a British bull-dog pistol. The men were put in jail to await identi-
fication.

On December 5, 1882, the Ford County Globe mentioned that
"Sheriff Hinkle is contemplating resigning his office as sheriff of the
county/' but he stayed on and apparently served out his term which
had only a little more than a year to go. A few days later, Decem-
ber 14, the Times reported that another jail break had been tried:

An attempt was made Sunday by the prisoners to break out of the county
jail. There are eleven prisoners confined there and they nearly succeeded in
making an escape thro* a hole in the wall near the northeast corner of the jail,
having punched the stone out of the wall with a broom handle. The prisoners
were placed in the cells and the desperate cases shackled. The jail officers and
sheriff's officers promptly secured the prisoners as soon as the attempted break
was discovered. A massive stone doorway has lately been put up at the main
jail entrance, and the present defect will necessitate additional strength to the
jail walls.



COWTOWN POLICE OFFICERS AND GUN FIGHTERS 441

The most exciting event during Hinkle's two terms as sheriff of
Ford county was the "Dodge City War" of 1883. Hinkle was a chief
correspondent and agent of Gov. G. W. Click during this matter and
was at times on the verge of despair over the see-saw motion of
public and official opinion. The story will be told fully in the sec-
tion on Luke Short.

On July 24, 1883, the Globe reported Hinkle's impending removal
from Dodge: "Sheriff Hinkel on last Friday sold his city residence
together with all the household furniture to Charley Heing, for
1,800 cash. Mr. Hinkel will engage in the Saloon business at Gar-
den City, Kansas/' Hinkle, however, remained sheriff of Ford
county until January, 1884, when Patrick F. Sughrue was sworn into
office.

1. Dodge City Times, November 8, 1879. 2. Ibid., May 17, 1879. 3. Ibid., Septem-
ber 15, November 10, 1881. 4. Ford County Globe, June 13, 1882.

HOGUE, EDWARD O.

(1847?- )

The Ellsworth Reporter, in its directory of city officers through
issues of September 19 to October 24, 1872 (the front page of Sep-
tember 12 and all of October 31 are missing from the files of the
State Historical Society), listed Edward O. Hogue as city marshal.
No news stories were found which threw any light on Hogue's
effectiveness in that position.

On July 10, 1873, the Reporter noted: "We never shall forget the
display of bravery in the discharge of his duty, that Ed. Hogue per-
formed last Saturday in making an arrest." This arrest was prob-
ably made as an Ellsworth county deputy sheriff for later in the
summer the Reporter stated that Hogue had "served two years as
Deputy Sheriff of our county." l

It was as a deputy sheriff that Hogue took Ben Thompson's
weapons after Bill Thompson had shot and killed Ellsworth county
Sheriff Chauncey B. Whitney. The Reporter, August 21, 1873,
said that after Mayor James Miller had summarily dismissed the
Ellsworth police force "the city was left without a police, with no
one but Deputy Sheriff Hogue to make arrests. He received the
arms of Ben Thompson on the agreement of Happy Jack [Morco]
to give up his arms!" The complete story of the murder of Sheriff
Whitney will be included in the section on Whitney.

Apparently Hogue was appointed city marshal after this episode,
for the Reporter, in telling of the August 20, 1873, murder of Cad

294411



442 KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY

Pierce, so referred to Hogue. The Reporters story has been in-
cluded in the section on Ed Crawford.

Hogue could not have remained as city marshal very long, how-
ever, for on August 28, 1873, the Reporter stated that "the entire
police force was changed at a special meeting of the City Council
yesterday. . . "

In September, 1873, Hogue announced as a candidate for sheriff
but no record was found of the number of votes he received. 2 He
was not elected.

The Reporter, November 27, 1873, mentioned that "Ed. Hogue is
employed by the business men of town as a night watchman. He is
just the man to catch any incendiary or thief who wants to get into
the penitentiary." That was the last mention of Ed Hogue in the
Ellsworth newspaper.

One other contemporary item on Hogue was found in the 1875
Kansas state census for Dodge City. In that record Edward Hogue
was listed as a deputy sheriff, 28 years old and born in France.
Nothing more has been found on the Kansas career of Edward O.
Hogue.

1. Ellsworth Reporter, September 25, 1873. 2. Ibid.

HOLLIDAY, JOHN HENRY

(1852P-1887)

John H. "Doc" Holliday had this advertisement placed in the
Dodge City Times, June 8, 1878:

DENTISTRY.

J. H. Holliday, Dentist, very respectfully offers his professional services to
the citizens of Dodge City and surrounding country during the summer. Office
at room No. 24, Dodge House. Where satisfaction is not given money will be
refunded.

If Holliday remained in Dodge "during the summer" he was not
involved in any sort of trouble that would have made the pages of
either of the local newspapers for his name did not appear there
again until October, 1881.

When the Earp-Clanton difficulties broke out in late 1881 and
early 1882 at Tombstone, Ariz., Holliday's name was mentioned by
the Dodge City papers as a participant in that now famous feud.
These articles have been included in the section on Wyatt Earp.

In the spring of 1883, when the "Dodge City War" erupted, Doc
was among those mentioned by Eastern newspapers as coming to
the aid of Luke Short. No proof has been established that he really
did come to Dodge at that time but the articles will be included in
the section on Short.



COWTOWN POLICE OFFICERS AND GUN FIGHTERS 443

HOLLISTER, CHARLES M.

C. M. Hollister was a deputy United States marshal at Caldwell
in 1883 when he, with City Marshal Henry N. Brown and Assistant
City Marshal Ben Wheeler, made this arrest described in the Cald-
well Commercial, April 12:

A FIGHT WITH HORSE THIEVES.
ONE KILLED AND ONE DANGEROUSLY WOUNDED.

Last Sunday J. H. Herron, of Clay county, Texas, came into town and
hunted up Deputy U. S. Marshal Hollister, to whom he stated that he wanted
some assistance in capturing a band of horse thieves he had followed from
Texas. The thieves had stolen two mules and two horses from Mr. Herron,
besides a lot of other stock from other parties.

Hollister started out with Herron, and run foul of the party a few miles
southeast of Hunnewell. The party consisted of a man named Ross, his wife,
daughter, two sons, daughter-in-law and her child. There was another party
camped close by. The latter, while not apparently connected with the Ross
outfit, had been their traveling companions.

Hollister, finding he could do nothing alone, returned on Tuesday, and se-
curing the services of Henry Brown and his assistant, Ben. Wheeler, the party
left about 11 o'clock p. m. At Hunnewell the party picked up Jackson, the
marshal of that place, and Wes. Thralls [deputy sheriff of Sumner county].

From Hunnewell the party struck out for the camp of the thieves, and just
at the gray dawn surrounded the outfit.

The Ross party, in reply to a demand to surrender, opened fire with their
Winchesters. The shooting lasted for about half an hour, when it was found
that the oldest Ross boy was killed and the younger one dangerously wounded
in two or three places. The latter, after the capture, made a statement regard-
ing the stealing of the stock they had with them, and also stated that two of
the original party had left for Wichita on Sunday with some of the stock. From
the wounded boy's statement, it is supposed that the party left Texas with about
forty head of horses and mules, among the number a fine stallion, for which a
reward of $500 is offered.

The dead Ross was taken to Hunnewell, and the other members of the party
to Wellington.

Messers. Brown and Wheeler returned to Caldwell about 11 o'clock yes-
terday morning, and from them we gathered the above particulars. They also
gave us some minute details of the fight, which time and space will not permit
publishing at this time.

In May the three peace officers again teamed up and arrested John
Caypless, a thief. The Caldwell Journal article reporting this has
been reprinted in the section on H. N. Brown.

Hollister arrested a mule thief in August. The Journal, August 9,
1883, reported:

Deputy U. S. Marshal Hollister, on Sunday night arrested John A. Moore on
the charge of stealing a span of mules from the Cheyenne and Arapaho agency



444 KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY

last spring. Moore has been hanging around among the Indians for the past
three years, and if all reports are true, has been up to all kinds of tricks. The
agency ordered him out of the Territory over a year ago, but he managed to
keep out of the way, in the mean time appropriating the mules charged to his
account. Word had been sent to Mr. Hollister to keep a lookout for him, and
Moore, coming up with the Indian train last week, dropped into Hollister *s
hands like a ripe apple. Moore was taken to Wichita, where he will have an
examination before the U. S. Commissioner.

At various times, from October 1, 1883, to August 6, 1884, Hollis-
ter's name showed up on the Caldwell police docket as the arresting
officer. Sometimes he was noted as "ast. marshal/' "special police-
man," "city marshal," or just "C. M. Hollister." On occasion his name
had appeared on the other side of the docket, having been arrested
for minor infractions of city ordinances. 1

In November, 1883, Hollister and Ben Wheeler killed Chet Van
Meter. The Caldwell Journal, November 22, 1883, reported:

A MAN FOR SUPPER.
KILLED BECAUSE HE WOULD NOT SURRENDER.

On Wednesday [November 21], about supper time, C. M. Hollister and Ben.
Wheeler drove up to the Leland Hotel in a spring wagon and lifting out the
body of a man deposited it on one of the tables in the front basement of that
house. When the body was laid out, we found it to be that of a young man
apparently about 23 or 24 years of age, about five feet seven inches in height;
dark complexion, smooth face, except a brown mustache, black hair, high
forhead, narrow between the temples, a long straight nose, something after the
Grecian style, with large nostrils; mouth fair size, with thin compressed lips.
It was the body of Chet. Van Meter, son of S. H. Van Meter living near Fall
Creek, in this township, about seven miles northwest of this city.

T. H. B. Ross, Justice of the Peace, immediately telegraphed for Coroner
Stevenson and County Attorney Herrick. The former was out of town, but the
latter came down on the night train, and this morning a coroner's jury was sum-
moned, consisting of D. Leahy, Wm. Morris, S. Swayer, Wm. Corzine, John
Phillips, E. H. Beals, and an inquest was held before Squire Ross.

We cannot give the testimony in detail, but the substance of it was to the
effect that Chet. Van Meter had married the daughter of Gerard Banks, a
widower living on a farm in Chikaskia township, about nine miles from town;
that he was living with his father-in-law, and that on the night of the 20th he
beat his wife. That he also, on that same night, fired at J. W. Loverton and
Miss Doty, threatening to kill them, and on the following morning had beaten
his brother-in-law, Albert Banks, a boy about fifteen or sixteen years of age,
and made threats that he would kill half a dozen of them in that neighborhood
before he got through. Young Banks and Loverton came in on Wednesday and
swore out a warrant for the arrest of Van Meter, before Squire Ross, stating the
above facts, and the Justice deputized C. M. Hollister to serve it, at the same
time telling him to get some one to go with him, and to go well armed, as, from
the statement of the complainants, Van Meter was a dangerous man, and would
likely resist a peaceable arrest.



COWTOWN POLICE OFFICERS AND GUN FIGHTERS 445

With this understanding, Mr. Hollister requested Ben Wheeler to accompany
him, and about four o'clock in the afternoon the party started for the home of
Mr. Banks. Arriving there it was ascertained that Chet had gone to his father's,
about five miles south. Driving over to Van Meter's, they found Chet standing
near the southeast corner of the house, with a Winchester in his hands. Wheeler
and Hollister jumped out of the wagon, and the former ordered Chet to throw
up his hands, and he did so, but he brought up his gun at the same time, and
fired, apparently at Hollister, as near as the evidence went to show. Wheeler
and Hollister fired almost simultaneously, but as Chet did not fall and attempted
to fire again, they both shot the second time, and he fell, dead. They then,
with the assistance of Loverton and young Banks, loaded the body into the
wagon, and brought it to town.

An examination of the body this morning by Dr. Noble disclosed the fact
that it had seven bullet holes in it, one evidently made by a large ball, entering
the right side between the second and third ribs, passing through the lungs
and liver and coming out between the ninth and tenth ribs. The other shots
entered his chest, and one penetrated the abdomen just above the navel. There
were also two gun shot wounds on each hand. The Winchester he held also
showed marks where the buckshot from Hollister 's gun had struck it.

The examination of witnesses closed at 3 o'clock, when the jury retired, and
after a short absence returned a verdict to the effect that the deceased came to
his death from gunshot wounds at the hands of C. M. Hollister and Ben.
Wheeler, while in the discharge of their duties as officers of the law, and that
the killing was not felonious.

After the verdict was rendered the body was turned over to S. M. Van Meter,
father of the deceased, who had it encased in a coffin and took it home for
burial.

And thus the latest, and we trust the last, sensation incident to border life
in Southern Kansas has ended.

1. Hollister was arrested November 22, 1879, for assaulting Frank Hunt. His fine,
one dollar. On May 12, 1882, he was arrested and fined $1 for "fighting in the city."

HORSEMAN, WILLIAM N.

(1857?- )

William Horseman was appointed city marshal of Caldwell on
April 12, 1880, the second man to serve in that office. D. W. Jones
was made assistant marshal and James Johnson, policeman. The
Caldwell Post, April 15, 1880, commented facetiously: "Boys you
had better behave yourselves now, or the 'police* will catch you.
With Horseman as marshal, Dan Jones as assistant and James John-
son as policeman, there will be no fooling. The weather is getting
too hot, for a sojourn in the cooler.'*

Apparently it was a good police force. The Post, May 6, 1880,
said of it: "Our city police are as vigilant as hawks, and we cannot
enough praise them for their efficiency/'

A few days later the marshal and his assistant had a row with
some soldiers. The Post told the story on May 13, 1880:



446 KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY

A row took place in the Keno room last Tuesday evening [May 11], caused
by a drunken soldier and a gambler getting into a dispute about the game.
The lie was passed and the matinee commenced. All the soldiers took a hand,
and then the police waltzed in to add the finishing touches to the performance.

The Chief of Police got a whack along the side of the head. Dan Jones
had his off foot stepped on, judging from the way he tripped around. For
a while it was lively, as the number of cut heads and bloody noses bear witness.
The cooler received its portion of the spoils of the row. There is a rumor to
the effect, that several of the soldiers intended to go in and have a row, and
during the jubilee some of them should cabbage all the money. Anyway, it
was a disgraceful affair. The officers in command, ought to learn the tendencies
of their men, when they have money in their pockets and whiskey is handy,
and if necessary, put every mother's son of them on guard.

In June Horseman and two companions captured a pair of horse
thieves. The Post, June 10, 1880, reported:

On last Sunday morning Wm. Horseman, city marshal; Frank Hunt, deputy
policeman, and John Meagher [Mayor Mike Meagher's brother], receiving in-
formation that a couple of suspicious characters were hiding in the brush on
Fall creek, went down to the creek as if on a fishing excursion, and on finding
their men, succeeded in arresting them. They were incarcerated in the cooler,
and confessed to stealing the two horses they had with them, at Wichita. On
Monday, Sheriff [Joseph] Thrall came down to the city on business and finding
the prisoners here took them to Wellington where they are now in jail.

The same issue of the Post mentioned that Marshal Horseman
had developed a new method of collecting fines:

Our city marshal has an original method to compel delinquents to work
out their fines on the streets. He proposes, if they refuse to work, to put a
ball and chain on them, get a good heavy anvil, chain them to it, and leave
them in the middle of the street while he goes and takes a seat in the shade.

George W. Flatt, who had been CaldwelTs first city marshal, was
killed on June 19, 1880, by unknown assassins. Marshal Horseman
and Mayor Mike Meagher were among the first to arrive at the
scene. 1 Within a few days, not only Mayor Meagher but also the
entire police force and three other citizens were arrested for sus-
pected complicity in the crime. The Caldwell newspapers seemed
vague as to why the men were charged, neither of them sure that
the coroner's inquest had pointed the finger of guilt at the officers. 2
One, the Caldwell Commercial, felt that the whole business was
a put up job on the part of Wellington (the county seat) authorities.

On June 30, while the hassle was in progress, the city council
of Caldwell relieved Horseman and his deputies. 3 By July 3 the
preliminary examinations were concluded and Horseman, Frank
Hunt, Dan Jones, and James Johnson were bound over for the



Online LibraryKansas State Historical SocietyThe Kansas historical quarterly (Volume 26) → online text (page 51 of 59)