Indian Pioneer Papers - Index
History Project for Oklahoma
Date: 17 June 1938
Louis Phillip Bousman
Post Office: Waurika,
Date of Birth: January
Place of Birth: Richmond,
Caney County, VA
Father: Joe H. Brusman
Place of Birth: Caney
Information on father:
Mother: Lizzie __?__
Place of birth: Pennsylvania
Information on mother:
Field Worker: Ethel V.
I was born January 24,
1859 at Richmond, Virginia.
I came to the plains of
Texas with my parents in the early days when I was just a little lad and
I do not know very much about the traveling at that time as I was so small.
I lived around there until I was about sixteen years old with first one
then the other of friends as my people died when I was small.
They came to Oklahoma
some time in the early days and settled around the Osage and Creek Nation.
I went back to Texas with
some people and settled close to the Boot Hill Cemetery, in Oldham County.
I was made appointed United
States Deputy Marshal as soon as I was old enough and I worked then for
many years in Texas and some in the state of Oklahoma after I came here.
The great outlaw, Billy the Kid, surrendered his gun and horse at the time
of his first capture to me. The “Kid” killed his first man while
working as a bell-hop at the age of fourteen years in Silver City, New
Mexico. I believe that was in 1876.
The Kid was given a bonus
of $5.00 per head for every man he killed after he was turned loose again.
Some people say that is those days I was a true character of the popular
adventure story “The Saga of Billy the Kid”. I was deputy under old
Pat Garrett in Fort Summer for a long time. I have seen many more
men die with their boots on in the McSwen-Murphy feud and in search for
Billy the Kid than any other man my age, I guess. I was married at
Tascosa, Texas, fifty-six years ago and came to Oklahoma and settled close
I crossed Red River on
a ferryboat just north of the place where Terral is now; this ferryboat
was owned and operated by a man named Dutch JONES, so they always called
it Jones’ Ferry.
The Old Chisholm Trail
came along south of Terral and ran along close to Fleetwood. I have
traveled this old trail many times trailing some outlaw, and then I have
herded cattle some along the old trail.
The only ranch house which
I remember close to Fleetwood was up on Mud Creek and was owned by Bill
Washington, and many people used to come to see the place and it surely
was a pretty place and the house was a great big house. I don’t remember
how many rooms there were in the house.
Roy SPRADLING and PORTER
Brothers owned the East-K.W. Hank Ranch. There was a ranch-house
on this place but not a very large one.
They had the only watering
hold for the public that I can think of; many thousand head of cattle were
driven to this place to be watered. This was not very far from the
Mr. J. L. MORGAN would
bring out barrels of salt and we would saw them half in two, bury them
down in the ground so the cattle could not turn them over, and break up
the barrels. The Comanche Indians used to come down through there
for their horses to get salt and water; a great bunch of them would come
together and then after they let their horses have all they wanted they
would go on down to the SUGGS Ranch to see what they could find there.
They were always very nice and peaceable and attended to their own business.
The first school in this
settlement was built by settlement people. It was a log house not
very large, was called the Prairie Grove School and was used for a church
We bought our supplies
at Sugden, a man by the name of GROGAN ran a mercantile store, and some
times we would get some things at Ryan.
Dr. PIKE was the first
doctor at Sugden.
There seems to be some
confusion in Mr. Bousman’s story about “Billy the Kid”; but other parts
of his reminiscences have some value and the manuscript is included.
Submitted to OKGenWeb by Brenda Hickman <email@example.com> 04-1999.