The following was printed in Comanche, Texas in the Comanche Chief on May 22, 1879, and it is especially interesting to me since I have spent years researching John Wesley Hardin as well as Comanche County.
Now, there are several reasons why I find this article very interesting.
First of all, let’s get our dates ironed out in our minds. It was in 1874 right here in Comanche, Texas that John Wesley Hardin supposedly killed Charlie Webb.
I say supposedly only because I found an old newspaper article where the judge in the case later claimed that Hardin was given a second degree sentence because there was some speculation that it might have actually been Hardin cousin Bud Dixson who killed Webb.
(Yes, I realize that that’s a “whole nuther” story in itself, but we are going to ignore it for now.)
The second date that we need to put on the timeline is 1877 because that is the year when Hardin was captured and brought back to Comanche for trial.
(There are some rather humorous accounts between 1874 and 1877 of rumors, etc. that kept many of the Comanche County men living in fear of Hardin’s return for revenge!)
Our third date on the timeline is 1879, the year of this particular notice in the Chief, and two years after John Wesley Hardin was tried and sent to prison. Does it seem a little strange to you that the government is finally asking for the guns it loaned Comanche men for protection from Hardin?
Or…do you suppose that the more things change, the more they stay the same? …Fredda Davis Jones
“All parties having guns in their possessions that were issued to the Comanche Guards during the Hardin troubles are requested to bring them in and deposit them with Wm. Carroll or the state authorities will take steps to punish all who refuse to deliver up the guns.”–J.A. Wright, J.D. Stephens