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Belle Starr's Cave

Posted by Bill Ferris 
Re: Belle Starr's Cave
September 03, 2013 09:56AM
Morrow Mustang Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> For what it is worth the WIKI says that the Blue
> Duck character in McMurtry is a fictional Kiowa
> half-breed based on a real person, Satanta..
>
> They also state that one of Belle Starr's
> biographers say she was married to another Indian
> named Blue Duck.
>
>
> [en.wikipedia.org]
> ove_series)
>
> [en.wikipedia.org])

McMurtry is an excellent writer of fiction. The Blue Duck in his story was a renegade Kiowa, and was never a great tribal leader. Satanta was a great chief, who led his people well. He was tried for murder, along with Satank, a lesser man who did make some of the sorts of claims that Blue Duck did in the novel. Probably the only similarity of that Blue Duck and Satanta was that Satanta did commit suicide while in prison, but it was not at his public hanging (none was ever planned for him, he was only sentenced to imprisonment) by jumping from a high tower.

The Wikipedia links you provided lead not to articles, but to Wikipedia pages stating that there are no articles by the names mentioned.

Dave McNeely



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/03/2013 10:04AM by old man from dallas.
Re: Belle Starr's Cave
September 03, 2013 12:37PM
There were three Kiowa alleged to be involved in the break-out and killing. Bonus points for naming the third.
bug
Re: Belle Starr's Cave
September 03, 2013 12:49PM
mreagant Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> There were three Kiowa alleged to be involved in
> the break-out and killing. Bonus points for
> naming the third.


Pacer?
Re: Belle Starr's Cave
September 04, 2013 12:16PM
mreagant Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> There were three Kiowa alleged to be involved in
> the break-out and killing. Bonus points for
> naming the third.

Big Tree

Dave McNeely
Re: Belle Starr's Cave
September 04, 2013 02:46PM
That is correct, Dave. There is a very good biography of Maj. Robert S. Neighbors written in the 50s/early 60s (I think) about the Comanche/Kiowa and some other tribes reservation effort in the 1850s in the vicinity of Fort Belknap. Among other things, it tells the story of those three Indians and several incidents that finally led to the ending of the attempt to make the system work in Texas. A very interesting story. Neighbors was murdered at Fort Belknap, appearently in a random act of violence.
Re: Belle Starr's Cave
September 04, 2013 08:10PM
mreagant Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> That is correct, Dave. There is a very good
> biography of Maj. Robert S. Neighbors written in
> the 50s/early 60s (I think) about the
> Comanche/Kiowa and some other tribes reservation
> effort in the 1850s in the vicinity of Fort
> Belknap. Among other things, it tells the story
> of those three Indians and several incidents that
> finally led to the ending of the attempt to make
> the system work in Texas. A very interesting
> story. Neighbors was murdered at Fort Belknap,
> appearently in a random act of violence.

Although the wagon train attack and murders were perpetrated by Satanta, Satank, and Big Tree, and they boasted of it on the Oklahoma reservation, there is considerable evidence that the violence and cattle thefts attributed to the Indians when they were living on the Brazos Reservations were in fact committed by local white men who wanted the Indians blamed. They were blamed, but eventually were moved out of Texas into Indian Territory for their own protection.

Dave McNeely
Re: Belle Starr's Cave
September 05, 2013 07:10AM
Probably should clarify that the wagontrain attack and killings that got the them charged with the crime took place almost a decade after the reservation system in Texas was shut down and after the various tribes were relocated near Fort Sill, Indian Territory. The depredation did occur in Texas and eventually Satanta was sent to Huntsvill prison. He died after leaping from a window in that prison I believe. A tragic story any way it is told.

I have in my collection of 19th century U.S. military arms a Colt revolver used by a soldier from the 1st California Volunteer Cavalry in the First Battle of Adobe Walls (November, 1864) in the Panhandle. An expedition of about 400 soldiers and Indian scouts from Federal posts in New Mexico, under the command of Col. Christopher (Kit) Carson attempted to dislodge nearly 10 times that many Comanche, Kiowa and Arapaho from their Winter camp on the Canadian River. The objective was not acheived after a day long battle. The story goes that Satanta was present with a bugle and every time the U.S. bugler blew "charge", Satanta would respond by blowing "retreat."

Anyone who'd like to know more about this, send me a private message and I'll direct you to an article I wrote a couple of years ago as well as some primary sources.

Mike
Re: Belle Starr's Cave
May 15, 2019 07:31PM
Belle Starr's Cave on Prairie Creek has been used in a number of pieces of fiction, most recently to my knowledge being in Brick Jordan's _Murder in Deep Ellum_ (2013). This novel depicts corruption in public works contracting and the Dallas police department in the 1930s. The incidents described, except for the public works contract corruption, were almost certainly completely fictional, though they were plausible given known history. In the book, the cave was used by corrupt police figures as a place to dispose of the bodies of police officers who did not cooperate in the corrupt practices, with the intention of the cave being dynamited to cover all traces.

The cave description in the book fits the descriptions in this thread, and suggests that Jordan did his background work well. The book was very interesting to me in that the descriptions of Dallas and environs fits with my knowledge. Jordan took liberty with historical figures, having them enact incidents that they were never a part of, and in roles they are not known to have have been in. For example, Ted Hinton, a Dallas County Deputy who was involved in the ambush of Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker, is depicted as a City of Dallas plain clothes detective.

Dave McNeely



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/15/2019 07:39PM by old man from dallas.
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