Hood County Texas Genealogical Society
INDIANS WOUND E. B. DENNIS
from The West Texas Frontier by Joseph
published in 1933
Note: This incident
occurred in western Hood County, Texas between Tolar and Bluff Dale.
E.B. (Dick) Dennis was at his home in Hood County on a furlough and preparing to return to the army. But before he left, he and his wife rode out on the range in search of stock. Mr. Dennis was riding a slow pony, but Mrs. Dennis was mounted on a splendid steed. It was April 12, 1865, and as they rode leisurely along, enjoying the spring atmosphere, Mr. and Mrs. Dennis discovered several horsemen riding in the distance. Inasmuch as they displayed no excitement, Mr. Dennis and his wife thought they were cowmen, and gave them only passing consideration. The Indians waited until E.B. (Dick) Dennis and his wife were out of sight, then the warriors of the plains came dashing toward Mr. Dennis and his wife. Mr. Dennis was unable to escape on his slow traveling pony, but Mrs. Dennis, who was mounted on a fine steed, could have soon outdistanced the savages. But her courage and fortitude did not fail her, and this frontier mother heroically stayed beside her husband, who soon received a paralyzing wound in his spine, causing him to fall from his horse. Before he fell, an Indian thrust him through the right side with a lance. Concerning Mr. Dennis’ feelings, emotions, and thoughts just at this time, he said, “Unless a person has passed through the same experience, it is difficult to describe the feeling of a person situated as I was. I felt that I was killed and that my wife would be, in a few minutes, and both of us scalped. I resolved, however, to sell our lives for as many Indians lives as possible. They had knocked my wife from her horse, then both our horses ran off. Any one looking at the picture from a distance would have said, “They will both be killed.” But just watch the scene shift. I made a desperate effort and got my pistol out of my scabbard and just as two Indians were approaching my wife, I fired pointblank on the one in the lead. You cannot imagine the joy I felt when I heard the Indians give a yell, wheel and mount their horses, and make a run for ours, which they got and made off with.”
Dennis, who was unharmed, successfully carried her husband to an old deserted
cabin nearby. Since people who are
seriously wounded invariably call for water, the first request Mr. Dennis made
was for a drink. But no drinking
utensils were available. So Mrs. Dennis
brought him water in her shoe. Mr.
Dennis said, “Now that was a dipper that I was not accustomed to drinking out
of, but that was the best water I ever tasted before in all my life.” Then as speedily as possible the devoted
frontier wife started for aid. Mr.
Dennis said, “In a short time one of by brothers, who had just been chased by
the Indians, heard what had happened and came to me. The Indians certainly had it in on the Dennis boys from that day. I was finally carried home and a
neighborhood doctor sent for, who in due time arrived with his case of surgical
instruments consisting of a dull pocket knife and a pair of bullet moulds.”
doctor succeeded in dislodging the arrow spike in the spine of Mr. Dennis, and
in due time, he recovered.
account of this conflict furnished the author by W.K. Baylor, who personally
interviewed Mrs. E.B. (Dick) Dennis, and then wrote the story. Author called to personally see Mrs.
Dennis, but she had moved a short time before, to another part of the state.
~ Web Page by Virginia Hale