Author Archives: Mustang

About Mustang

US Marine (Retired), historian, writer.

The Dumb Gray Fox

Whenever watching western films, particularly those produced between 1950-70, a standard line of dialogue in a hold up might begin with, “Hands up!”  The man actually responsible for this phrase was a real-life bandit by the name of George Anderson … Continue reading

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Mountain Men

A mountain man was a frontier explorer.  Many of these men travelled alone across the vast forested wilderness of what became the northwestern United States; a few travelled in small groups of two or three, but all these men survived … Continue reading

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The Masterson’s

The old west produced a number of legends, some of whom became famous in their own lifetime, others only after they were dead, and some of these fellows were only legends in their own minds.  As children, we were most … Continue reading

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The Elm Creek Raid

There are those who lament and deplore the atrocities foisted upon American Indians as Anglo-settlers moved westward through the present-day United States.  Looking at these events through the rose-colored lenses of the twenty-first century, one might argue that (a) white … Continue reading

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John Coffee Hays

In 1836, a 19-year-old young man by the name of Jack Hays migrated from his home in Tennessee to the Republic of Texas.  He came from a good family, was well-educated, and had influential friends or friends of the family, … Continue reading

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The Chisholm Trail

Who do we associate most with the Chisholm Trail?  John S. Chisum?  John Wayne?  We’ve allowed ourselves to become a bit confused about this period of history and I think it’s time we sorted it out. Here we go. The … Continue reading

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Milt Yarberry

People change their names for all kinds of reasons.  In the old west, it was more likely that a man or woman was running away from something, a result of having something to hide, or possibly as simple as not … Continue reading

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The Davis Guards

This article is about the First and Second Battle of Sabine, Texas in 1862 and 1863. But first, some background  The United States declared its independence from the United Kingdom in 1776.  It was a bold move, not simply because … Continue reading

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The McCanles-Hickok Shooting

David Colbert McCanles (the family name was later changed to McCandless) was born in 1828 in North Carolina.  He was the son of James M. McCanles and Rachel Alexander.  It has been said that before moving his family west, he … Continue reading

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New Mexico, Part II

(Continued from last week) American Civil War  Between 1850 and 1861, the lower portion of the New Mexico Territory was largely neglected by the federal government and the territorial government in Santa Fe.  As a result of this neglect, and … Continue reading

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