1859- Texas- Andy Adams, cowboy and author of “The Log of a Cowboy” was born. From early youth he helped his two brothers with cattle and horses on their father’s farm. Adams traveled to Texas in the early 1880s and remained there for ten years, eight of which he spent in trail driving. He had become a foreman before he left the trail in 1890. After that he remained in Texas two more years, during which he was a partner in an unsuccessful mercantile venture in Rockport. In 1892 he drifted to gold-mining camps in Colorado and Nevada and in 1894 moved to Colorado Springs, where he lived until his death September 26, 1935.
1873- Arizona Territory- Manuel Fernandez was executed for the knife murder of Mike McCartney, a Yuma Arizona store keeper, and so became the first man to be legally hanged in the territory of Arizona.
1882- Cochise County, Arizona Territory– President Arthur threatens to impose martial law due to lawlessness.
1888- Florence, Arizona Territory- Arizona lawman Peter Gabriel had chased bandits through Pima County, Arizona Territory, from 1883 when he was the sheriff of the county. He fired one of his deputies, Joe Phy, for disorderly and drunken conduct and later arrested him in Casa Grande for assault. The two men feuded throughout an election for sheriff in 1888 which Gabriel won. On May 3, 1888 Phy called Gabriel to the street from a saloon where both men had been drinking. The two men went for their six-shooters and, in a wild gun battle in which eleven shots were exchanged, Gabriel shot Phy several times. Gabriel was wounded in the groin and in the chest near the heart. The Sheriff walked away from the fallen Phy and staggered into the O.K. Stable where he collapsed. Phy died four hours later but Gabriel survived to stand trial and be exonerated for the shooting on grounds of self-defense.
1870- Kit Carson, Colorado Territory- the Kansas Pacific begins laying track westward.
1873- Labette County, Kansas– the remains of Dr. William York and other murder victims are found on the Bender family farm.
1875- Wichita, Kansas- Wyatt Earp makes his first arrest, bringing in W.W. Compton, a horse-thief.
1880- Las Lentes, New Mexico Territory- Six settlers are slain by Apaches.
1885- Miles City, Montana- fire destroys a major city block.
1932- Alberta Canada- a number of temporary “tent towns” sprang up along the shores of the Red Deer River in central Alberta as word of a gold dust discovery spread. Several groups of unemployed men were prospecting along the river banks, hoping to find enough dust to live on through the long winter months.
1862- Battle of Pueblo, Mexico. General Ignacio Zaragoza’s troops were outnumbered three to one as they battled the invading French-backed Maximilian’s forces. The Mexican forces defeated Napoleon III’s army and Pueblo stood. The 5th of May is celebrated in the United States among the Mexican-American population, especially in California, Arizona Territory, New Mexico Territory and Texas to commemorate the overthrow of the Mexican Imperial Monarchy headed by Maximilian of Austria. The Imperial Monarchy was imposed from 1864 to 1867 on Mexico by Napoleon III, Emperor of France (nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte) and the Mexican conservatives “Club de Notables”.
1863- Montana Territory- a party led by James Stuart stakes out the site for a town at the mouth of the Bighorn River.
1866- Fort Fletcher, Kansas- the fort is abandoned.
1871- Arizona Territory- Bear Springs Fight– Lt. Cushing and 10 of his soldiers were killed when a party of Chiricahua Apaches led by Cochise trapped a detail of the 3rd U.S. Cavalry in the Whetson Mountains of Arizona.
1877- Canada- Sitting Bull leads his people into “Grandmother’s Land”, a reference to Queen Victoria.
1877- Fort Robinson, Nebraska- Crazy Horse leads almost 900 followers to Red Cloud Agency having been promised a reservation in the Powder River country.
1877- Dowlin’s Mill, New Mexico Territory- a cattle dispute grows as Jerry Dillon kills an unarmed Paul Dowlin.
1895- In the early morning the Doolin band was encamped at their hideout on the Cimarron River when, a large posse led by the redoubtable lawman Chris Madsen came upon the Doolins as they were asleep. Tulsa Jack Blake was on guard at the time and, spotting Deputy William Banks sneaking up on the sleeping forms of his fellow bandits, pulled his six-gun and fired at the lawman. The bandits leaped to their feet and a roaring gun battle ensued. Blake continued to exchange shots with deputy Banks and one of Banks’ shots struck his cartridge belt, exploding a shell that tore into Blake’s stomach, causing a mortal wound. Tulsa Jack died as Bill Doolin and the others leapt into their saddles and splashed across the Cimarron to make their thunderous escape.
1856- California- U.S. Army troops from Fort Tejon and Fort Miller prepare to ride out to protect Keyesville from Yokut Indian attack.
1859- Kansas/Colorado Territory- John Gregory finds lode gold at what will be called Gregory’s Gulch, on the North Branch of Clear Creek near the new city of Denver. Horace Greeley calls the area “the richest square mile on earth.”
1868- Montana Territory- the U.S. government begins payments of annuities to Crow Indians.
1877- Fort Robinson, Nebraska- Chief Crazy Horse surrenders 900 warriors, women, and children.
1877- Wood Mountain Saskatchewan – Sioux Chief Sitting Bull leads 1,500 of his followers into Canada to ask protection from the Queen; after defeating General George Custer and the US 7th Cavalry at the Battle of the Little Big Horn.
1881- Tombstone, Arizona Territory- James Earp leaves with his wife for California.
1911- Johnson City, Tennessee- George Maledon, Judge Isaac Parker’s chief executioner in Fort Smith, Arkansas dies.
1859- Denver, Colorado Territory- the first Leavenworth and Pikes Peak Express stage arrives, having followed the Republican River from Fort Leavenworth.
1870- Texas- 9th Cavalry Sergeant Emanuel Stance led an attack against the Kickapoo capturing horses and defending a small wagon train. He later received the Congressional Medal of Honor for his heroic service, the first of the “buffalo soldiers” to be so honored. Congress awarded a total of 18 Medals of Honor to black soldiers who served during the Indian wars.
1881- New Mexico Territory- Governor Lew Wallace again offers a $500 reward for the capture of Billy the Kid.
1885- Wellesville, New York– George “Gabby” Hayes is born.
1888- Lawman turned outlaw, Burt Alvord helped Cochise County Sheriff John Slaughter capture three Mexican bandits on this date. Later when Alvord ran a band of train robbers he was run down by the Arizona Rangers and spent a couple of years in the pen at Yuma. As a teenager, he found a job as a stable hand at the O.K. Corral. Shortly after he began work there, Alvord witnessed one of the most spectacular gunfights of the Old West, the showdown shoot-out between the Earp-Holliday clan and the Clanton-McLowery outlaws. Though he was only fifteen at the time of this legendary gun battle on Oct. 26, 1881, Alvord watched carefully as the Earps bested the outlaws by their cool composure and deliberate aim, a hallmark that was to be Alvord’s adopted character when acting as a lawman or an outlaw.
1901- Helena, Montana- Gary Cooper, of High Noon fame, is born.
1827-Fort Leavenworth, first known as Cantonment Leavenworth, was established by Col. Henry Leavenworth on the Missouri River’s right bank of Salt Creek as an army post to protect the western frontier and travelers on the Santa Fe Trail. 1829 Sublette’s pack-train, en route West by way of Independence, Missouri for the first time traveled out the Santa Fe Trail some distance before turning northwest toward the Kansas river. This became the established Oregon-California trail route.
1846- Palo Alto, Texas- the first major battle of the Mexican War was fought resulting in victory for General Zachary Taylor’s forces.
1862- Gold Creek, Montana Territory- James and Granville Stuart erect the first sluices for catching gold.
1879- Montana Territory- construction begins on Fort Assiniboine, south of Havre.
1885- Batoche Saskatchewan – Frederick Dobson Middleton (1825-1898) attacks Gabriel Dumont at Batoche; battle rages for several days; until troops disobey Middleton, storm the trenches and slaughter the Metis defenders.
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