SEWARD COUNTY, KANSAS

NEWSPAPER ARTICLES


TWO LIBERAL BOYS ATTENDING CMTC

Eugene Robinson and Eldon Mace left Sunday for Fort Riley, where they will attend the Citizens Military Training Camp for the next month. They were taken as far as Kingman by Eugene's parents, Mr. and Mrs. L. L. Robinson and family. Misses Helen and Ellen Robison are remaining at Kingman for a two weeks' visit with reliatives. (Note: Robinson and Robison are typed as printed in the newspaper) (The Southwest Daily Times, Monday, July 1, 1940, transcribed by Jim Laird)

KANSAS LIBERATOR CRASH KILLS FOUR

LIBERAL, KAS., Oct. 29---Four persons were killed and two were injured yesterday in the crash of a four-engined bomber from the Liberal Army Air Field.

The big Liberator crashed and burned four miles southwest of Satanta, Kas., the field reported today.

Second Lieut. Harold W. Connerly, 23 years old, student co-pilot, of Long Beach, Calif., was among those injured. He was taken to the station hospital. (Seattle Daily Times ~ October 29, 1943)

TROOPS ON THE SCENE OF THE KANSAS RIOTS

They Arrive in Time to Prevent the Lynching of Two of the Mob who Shot Sheriff Dunn and his Deputy

Sure to Kill Judge Botkin

It is Believed the Intention of the Gang was Thwarted by the Conflict with the Posse

Arkalon, Kan. - Jan. 6, 1892 - More details have been received of the battle between the Sheriff's posse and the Woodevale and Springfield gang on Tuesday morning in which Sheriff Dunn and a deputy were killed.

Judge Botkin whom the gang had sworn to kill had a conference on Monday night with Sheriff Dunn and that night the Sheriff and Undersheriff, with five deputies stayed at the Judge's home, five miles north of this city.

Early in the morning of the Sheriff's party started out to scout the canyons at the head of which the mob was said to be located. They reached the head of the main and deepest canyon without discovering any cause for alarm, and were standing in this deep gorge conversing, when suddenly the high banks surrounding were covered with about forty men, armed with Winchester rifles. This happened just before daybreak, and one of the mob shouted, "Who are you fellows down there, and what do you want?"

Dunn replied that he was the Sheriff of Seward county and that all he and his party wanted was peace. The Sheriff and party continued to walk down the canyon, when they were headed off by the mob and commanded to throw down their arms and surrender. This they refused to do and turning again to the head of the canyon, the only avenue of escape, they attempted to climb the steep banks when the mob opened fire on them with Winchesters.

Fought to the Last

At the first fire Dunn was mortally wounded, and, evidently conscious of the fact, he fired upon his murderers and fought them till the last breath left his body. One of his deputies who lingered near reports that after his death some of the attacking party stood over him and used his dead body as a target.

The deputies all succeeded in reaching the top of the bluff nearest to Springfield, when they started to run toward the town, a mile and a half distant. They were pursued by the mob, who continued shooting at them until they reached the brick school house in the southern suburb of Springfield. The deputies took refuge in a private house.

Deptuy E. S. Guyman was injured in hips and knees in scaling the icy cliff and after running a short distance fell riddled with bullets. The murderous mob exultingly cried: "There goes another one. Don't let one of them escape."

The mob gathered at a point fifty yards distant from where Guyman lay and hitched up their teams and got ready to leave. They were armed with heavy rifles. They loaded up and pulled out to the road leading to the Springfield and apparently drove to the town.

The investigation was commenced on Wednesday morning and it is probable that it will be continued for several days. Dunn's body was brought to this city this evening and on Thursday afternoon will be taken home.
Intentions of the Mob

There are two ideas advanced in connection with this matter. One is that the mob intended to assassinate Judge Botkin only, and that the Sheriff and his party prevented the carrying out of the well laid scheme.

The other idea is that the mob were after Dunn and Guyman to carry out the threat to put a stop to the contest for the Shrievalty of Steward county and as soon as Dunn and Guyman were dead they were satisfied.

The former idea is generally accepted and is doubtless true. The mob hurried away from the place after killing Dunn, fearing the escaped deputies would return with help.

Two companies of militia arrived this afternoon, one company going to Springfield, leaving a guard at the residence of Judge Botkin who will go over to Springfield tomorrow to open court. Two of the murderers were arrested this morning while lying in ambush for Botkin who had announced he would go to Springfield this morning.

Prepared to Lynch

When news of the arrested had become known the residents of the county began to assemble in a canyon near this place until nearly one hundred had been counted. They were going to wait until evening, when Dunn's body was brought in, and while attention was diverted thereto make a raid on the jail and kill the two men.

The guards were in the scheme and had orders to kill the men if there was any unusual noise or disturbance. The arrival of the troops changed all this. They took charge of the prisoners and now hold them. Some thirty warrants have been issued, as the party of yesterday are nearly all known though for what purpose no one seems to know.

It has been demonstrated in the Wood murder that no trial can be held in one of the southwest counties for as serious a charge as murder unless the prisoner desires it. Reports from Springfield up to eight o'clock indicate that the troops have secured control and hold that place.


The trouble in Seward county began with an attempt by Colonel Sam Wood to resist what he claimed was a fraudulent organization of Stevens county, which organization was subsequently legalized by the Legislature of the State. Subsequently personal troubles arising between Judge Botkin who had been appointed Judge of the Thirty-third Judicial District at the time of its creation and Sam Wood had a tendency to spread the hostillties existing in Stevens county and over the whole district. The result of the impeachment trial of Judge Botkin which ended in his favor, seems to have fanned the smouldering embers into another fierce flame, which culminated in the assassination of Sam Wood on June 23 last.

Subsequent failure to obtain a jury in Stevens county for the trial of Colonel Wood's alleged assassins still added to the confusion.

Governor Humphrey is determined to have the leaders of the mob arrested and brought to justice if there is sufficient power in the State to do so. (New York Herald, January 7, 1892, page 10)

FOUR WERE KILLED

Another Bloody Battle in Southwestern Kansas

It was a Running Fight

Number of Wounded Has not Yet Been Ascertained

Judge Botkin Fails to Open Court at Springfield as He Intended

Fighting on the Run

Arkalon, Kan., Jan. 7 - The bloodshed arising from the long continued trouble in Southwestern Kansas is not yet ended.

Deputy sheriffs have partly avenged the death of Sheriff Dunn. It is not known to be a positive fact, but it seems more than likely that as a result of the attempt of the deputies to bring the slayers of the Sheriff to justice and force an explanation of the murder, four of the outlaws were killed this afternoon.

The report, however, needs confirmation before absolute reliance can be placed upon it.

A courier arrived here at noon from the south line of the State. He reports a running conflict between the fleeing desperadoes and an armed posse of pursuers.

According to his report there were two wagon loads, with fifteen of the men, participating in the canyon battle. They had been encamped in a gulch south of Springfield, where they were discovered.

They saw their pursuers about the same moment and then commenced the life and death race. For ten miles the two parties were not within firing distance, but just before dusk the pursuing party came within less than a quarter of a mile of the desperadoes, and then firing commenced.

This running fight was kept up on a level plain for a distance of four miles. Following one fusillade four men were seen to tumble from their seats in the wagons, one in one and three in the other. It could not be ascertained whether they were killed or wounded.

The pursuing party finding that their jaded horses would not carry them further, made a detour of some half a mile to a ranch where they procured fresh horses, and the race was resumed.

The courier started back from that point. He says the pursuing party, numbering fourteen men, would follow the desperadoes into No Man's

and if necessary and

Bring Them Back Dead or Alive

It was learned today that the party which killed Dunn, numbering about fifty men, was made up of details from the counties of Seward, Stevens, Grant, Morton, and Haskell. Threats have been made in each of these five counties that in case Judge Botkin attempts to open court in either he will be killed and the threats come from men known to be desperate. The scenes in this county are feared in each of the other counties.

At 1 o'clock this morning a young man named Estes was arrested at his home in Fargo and brought here, where he is held by the troops. It is alleged that he was one of the party who killed Dunn.

Governor Humphrey today made inquiries as to the reason why the court at Springfield had not been opened. Judge Botkin had given notice that he would open court yesterday and again today. Instead of doing so he went to Pratt today to attend the funeral of Dunn.

The result is one company is now at Springfield awaiting Judge Botkin in the meantime aiding the deputy sheriffs in making the arrests of men engaged in the battle. For these over thirty warrants have been issued.

These arrests are but the beginnings of another trouble not anticipated. The men are to be brought here as fast as they are arrested and confined awaiting the pleasure of the county attorney. It has been alleged that if the preliminary examinations were held in Springfield the prisoners would all be released, therefore, they are all brought to Arkalon. Two more prisoners - C. S. Anderson, and J. J. Leach - were brought in this afternoon and one boy, Robinson was released. There are now

Five Men Held Under Guard

And the prospects are that no examination will be held until some twenty of the leading members of the supposed organization have been arrested - at least such is the wish of the county attorney.

As one of today's prisoners is the chairman of the Board of County Commissioners and is also a leading alliance man, and all the prisoners so far belong to the alliance, grave fears are felt by Adjutant General Roberts and the people here that a rescue will be attempted. An attack by thirty or forty well armed, determined men could result only one way - the release of the prisoners and possibly bloodshed.

If Judge Botkin had opened his court when he should have done so, part of the force at Springfield could have been relieved and sent here to reinforce the prison guards. It is evident that someone is committing a serious blunder that may have a disastrous ending.

So far the prisoners are practically unprovided with bedding, although the nights are severely cold, and it will soon be impossible for the town to feed them, so they must be kept alive on the rations issued to the troops.

Colonel Roberts has sent word to Springfield that he will receive no more prisoners if they are not provided with bedding when sent here. He is considering the advisability of ordering another company from the eastern or central part of the State, so as to have sufficient protection in case of an attack. He will probably do so tomorrow as he has the authority of the Governor.

It was necessary today to get out of the county the two detectives who as members of the alliance, became members of the vigilance organization that killed Dunn. Their

Lives are Worth but Little

As they have given the information that leads to the wholesale issuing of warrants of arrest. By morning both will be in places of safety.

At Springfield all is quiet, although the contest case is now going on to determine the fight for sheriff. The alliance candidate was counted in by a majority of 13, but frauds in counting the votes in this, Seward County, are not new things and the recounting shows that false returns were made from one township sufficient to change the actual result.

Guyman, the sheriff elect who escaped when Dunn was killed went over today and the probabilities are that he will qualify although alliance members of the People's party have declared that he would never live until the 12th, the day he should go into office.

William V. Dunn the 17 year old son of Dunn will return here Saturday after his father's burial for the purpose of "settling up matters," as he says, with a quiet but dangerous look in his eyes. The six men who escaped at the Canyon battle have openly declared that they will hunt to the death every man concerned in the disgraceful affair, and young Dunn has joined them. They feel bitterly the murder and this is intensified by the knowledge that the body of the murdered Sheriff was robbed of arms, watch, jewelry, and money, proving that outlaws in fact must be dealt with.

hen, too, there is the feeling that following the Wood murder precedent, the guilty parties would eventually escape unless summary justice is administered.

The friends of the prisoners now held and to be taken fear the speedy and fatal action of Judge Botkin's friends. There seems to be cause for fears on both sides.

A Springfield the commander of the militia had a little trouble with the deputy sheriff this afternoon and after threatening to arrest him, disarmed all of the deputies of their Winchester rifles. He gave them soldiers to aid them in making arrests.

Calmed by Troops

Springfield, Kan. Jan. 7- The soldiers who arrived here last night have again demonstrated the effect long since conclusively proved that a mob no matter how turbulent and lawless it may be in the absence of troops, soon becomes orderly and law abiding in their presence, or else seeks safety in flight.

In the present instance the latter effect is noticed and not a single member of the mob which so cruelly murdered an officer of the town remained to oppose the State militia in their work of bringing order out of chaos.

Contrary to a report circulated freely Judge Botkin did not come to Springfield at all. The judge intended to open and adjourn court at 10 o'clock this morning under the protection of the militia, but the project was abandoned, and he went to Pratt to attend the funeral of Sheriff Dunn.

Judge Botkin Disappointed

Topeka, Kan., Jan. 7 - Four men are under arrest and guarded by the militia at Arkalon.

Judge Botkin is said to have been much disappointed that the Governor did not send arms. He did not care so much for the militia as for arms. Now the troops are there he wants them to remain at least three weeks.

It is evident that if arms had been sent without men a bloody struggle would have taken place.

The troops were distributed. A portion were left at Arkalon and some were sent to guard the residence of Judge Botkins while another detachment was sent to Springfield.

Judge Botkin arrested one of the men himself while he was on the street.

Governor Humphrey sent the following to Judge Botkin in answer to his call for arms and ammunition:

"Adjutant General Roberts is on the ground to preserve the peace and protect life. If the civil authorities are unable to serve warrants for the arrest of parties property charged with the killing of Dunn. General Roberts will aid them when called upon by the Sheriff or the Coroner acting as the Sheriff. The military must at all times be held subordinate to the civil authorities. I rely upon you as Judge of the court to exert all your powder to the end that the peace may be preserved and the

Further Efusion of Blood

Be prevented."

He also sent a dispatch to General J. N. Roberts: "Tell Botkin that I can not put arms in the hands of deputy sheriffs. You are there, and it the civil authorities are unable to serve warrants for the arrest of parties properly charged with the killing of Dunn and call upon you to aid them, you will do so. Your mission is to prevent further disturbance. To this end you will use due discretion and sound judgment. The forces under your command must not be used to aggravate old troubles or precipitate new ones in a spirit of revenge or retaliation. Warrants should not be issued indiscriminately, but only against parties charged in good faith with participating in the crime. Is the Coroner level-headed, and disposed to do his duty without fear or favor?

"Keep me fully advised."

The man Judge Botkin arrested lives at Frago Springs. He was placed under guard.

Mrs. Sam Wood is said to be implicated in this conspiracy to kill Judge Botkin, Dunn and County Attorney Beauchamp. People here refuse to believe that she would countenance such a brutal deed.

Re-Enforcements Ordered Out

Wichita, Kan. - Jan. 7 - General Murray Myers received a telegram from Governor Humphrey tonight ordering him to proceed with the force under his command to Arkalon at once and place himself under the orders of Adjutant General Roberts. All the Deputy Marshals in Kansas and in the Indian Territory are centering toward Arkalon. Governor Humphrey added that he considered the situation at Arkalon most serious. (Inter Ocean, January 8, 1892, page 1)

SWORN TO TAKE LIFE

Oath Bound Murder Society Discovered in Kansas

Secret Order of Justice

Death the Penalty for Disobeying its Mandates

This Society Ordered Sheriff Dun to be "Destroyed" and Plotted Against Botkin

They Stop at Nothing

Topeka, Kan., Jan. 19 - The suspicion that there was an organized conspiracy to kill Judge Botkin, Pitzer, an attorney, Dunn, sheriff, and two or three other persons in the southwest has been fully substantiated.

The surprise was heightened when the plot was found to include parties in the city. Evidence has not yet been secured that will convict the latter, but still the evidence is such that outside of a court there would be no hesitation in accepting as true the charges made.

Three men residing in widely separated localities have furnished information concerning the masked men and their forecasts have always been correct, proving that they have never made guesses.

While they are not ready at this time to reveal the full enormity of this criminal organization, they have learned enough of its workings to show that three separate oaths bind the members to obey the orders of the inner council without question, even though they may be commanded to take the life of their dearest relatives.

In the counties of Haskell, Grant, Stevens, and Seward there are sixty-five members all of whose names have been furnished Judge Botkin.
These men are taken only from the alliance, and even then the utmost care is used in selecting proper material. The meetings are held only at Springfield and at Woodsdale, where the three degrees are taken.

The first degree binds the members to

Stand by Each Other

In public and in private, and to defend each other at the risk of life, if necessary. The applicant is pledged, under penalty of

having his residence burned and his stock and crops destroyed never to revel aught that may come to his knowledge concerning the actions of any member.

When taking the second degree he swears to join any member or members in the protection of their rights and in resenting any personal affront or injury. If he fails in responding when called upon or reveals any contemplated action on the part of a fellow member his life may be declared forfeited by the council to which he belongs.

It will be noticed that in these two degrees there is no provision for enforcing the penalty. Every member is expected to take all three degrees. In the final degree he places himself at the disposal of the inner council in life and death. He swears to faithfully execute any orders issued him by that council. He is given to understand that he power of this secret order of justice will be directed against the enemies of one or all of the organization. He further swears that when ordered to destroy any member proving traitorous, or even suspected of being such that he will.

Unhesitatingly Obey such Mandate

When called out by the inner council or by one member thereof, he swears to obey, holding himself in readiness at all times to join any party for the extermination of common enemies. Failing in any part of his obligations he places his life at the disposal of his comrades.

It has been learned that a meeting of this organization was held in a deserted hotel at Springfield the night before the Dunn murder at which forty-one men were present.

There are no rituals or written work. The oaths are administered by one of three men who are now definitely located.

A figure cipher is used in transmitting orders which is somewhat similar to the cipher used in a letter unearthed about a month since at Meridien, signed by the State Secretary of the Citizen's Alliance. It is more intricate, but the similarity is marked.

Judge Botkin now has the following cipher message:

"Zell, Kansas, Lov 41, 891 - Dear Sir: C, 5, 21, 9, 15, 16, 23, 4, 16, 5, O'Connor: 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, 2, 5, 7, 8, 2. Brennan 3, 4, 7, 8, B. 3, 5, 8, Botkin, C, 2, 5, 7, 8. Sam Dunn, 2, 17, 5, 19, 21, 13, 5, 9, 7, 6, 14, 16, 3, 9, 17 8. Pettyjohn, D, 5, 3, 17, 12, 21, 18, 15, 9, 14, 7, 8, 11, W, 8. Steele, 9, 16, 12, 18, 19, 7, C. M. Davis, 9, 2, 4, 13, 21, 15, 18, 9, 9, 11, 14, 21, 29, 23, 8, 5, 13. Jones, 9, 13, 16, 18, 15, 7, 14, 2, 5, 8, 23, 25, 23, 8, 5, 14, 14, 12.

This information comes from one of three men who joined the society who has been spirited away to a place of safety.

The other two are still in that county. They will be enabled to strengthen the evidence they already have as soon as the proper time comes.

It was learned yesterday that parties in Topeka were connected with this murderous organization, but they may have so covered their tracks that they will escape arrest.

Within two weeks, the plans of the prosecutor will be so fully matured that arrests will begin, when all the details will be given. (Inter Ocean, January 20, 1892, page 1)

L. M. McADAMS ON SICK LIST

Mr. McAdams, who has for several months been head barber in the Horton & Gross shop, is in the hospital with a severe attack of Bright's Disease. His mother and sister arrived Wednesday from Danville, IL to be with him. Mac. is a fine fellow and we hope he pulls through this spell in a short time. [The Liberal democrat.(Liberal, Kan.) July 16, 1915]

L. M. McAdams, the barber who recently pulled through a siege of Bright's disease at the local hospital, returned Friday to his old home in Danville, Illinois. He was accompanied by his mother and sister who arrived a couple of weeks ago. Mac. had a rather rough time of it for a while, but we are pleased to note that he came through with head up and colors flying. [The Liberal democrat.(Liberal, Kan.), July 30, 1915, submitted by K.T.] submitted by K. T.]


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