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THE ROCK ISLAXD ARGUS. SATURDAY, MAT 17, 1013.
By RIPLEY D. SAUNDERS
Gopyrifibt. 1911. by Hw Bolhs-MtrrB
Capture and Trial.
FIVE miles back, on tie road along
which tbe fugitives bad come,
two men on horseback were gal
loping swiftly in pursuit One
win tall, with eooi gray blue eyes un
der shaggy brows, gray bair. white
mustache and an old fashioned Impe
rial, lilt sent in tbe saddle was that
of a seasoned cavalryman. Tbe otber
was small, wiry, wltb a smooth shaven,
bardset face, a mouth like a ateel trap,
cold hazel eyes tbat kept then) stives
fixed on tbe mad ahead.
"We oughtn't to be very fur behind
'era now. Jim." spoke the first man.
"Tb ain't no wny they could ba" dodg
ed from tbe main road. Is there?"
"No. colonel, they ain't." returned
tbe other. "Not till they come to the
old dirt road that loads to tbe cabin
I told you nbout That's where they're
beadlo' for. Colonel Todbiinter. and lt
where we're goln' to run npon "em
We'll be there pretty soon too."
Colonel Todbunter's face was grim.
"I bate to think of Lottie-May Dog
geMI" be spoke. "It's mighty bad.
mighty bnd. sub. I feel thnt sorry for
poor old Hafe Doggett. Lord. Lord, tbe !
hnme of It all is a-goin' to kill tbat
good ojd man!"
The wiry little mnn to whom he
poke snapped bis Jaws together in an
"Thnt can't be helped now. colonel."
he made answer. "I got to do my duty,
woman or no vomcn."" j
"I ain't askln' you to do anything I
less'n your duty. Jim." replied Colonel
Todhunter. "And I'm Just as reiponsl
ble as yon are. Hut I'm sorry, and I'm
afraid too. If there's any serious trou
ble I hope there'll be some wny o'
aeeln' that the girl don't get hurt"
"She won't if she behaves herself."
aid the other. "Hut she's got to do
that, for there ain't goln' to be no time
for foolishness. You've got to for
get the girl part of this business if you
want to come out on top. Colonel Tod
bunter." Colonel Todhunter slgbed. "I reckon
that's straight. Jim." he agreed.
The two rode on abreast without fur
ther words until they reached tbe cross
road. "Here we are. colon:." spoke the lit
tle man. bis voice low. "It'a a safe bet
they're layln' up till dark In that old
Tbe two riders checked their horses
to a wnlk.
Sudderly a woman's shriek broke the
stillness. "For God's snke. Jesse:" the
cry sounded. "You ain't a gin" to kill
me like a dog. are you?"
Instautly. bearing the cry. Colonel
Todhunter pressed his horse to n full
gallop. His companion did the same
They threw themselves from the sad
dle in front of the cabin. Colonel Tod
hunter hurled bU weight against the
door. It yielded, and he plunged in
side. A girl knelt in tbe center of the dark
little hut Her bands were uplifted In
entreaty. Over her stood a mnn with a
knife raised to strike. Ills face was
blark with rage.
Colonel Todhunter covered him with
a swiftly drawn pistol. "Hands up.
CMrkasaw! We'll 'tend to Lottie-May
ourselves and to you. This is the sher
iff o' Ralls county I got with me."
The man turned. He looked into tbe
muzzles of two revolvers, tbe sherii
being well nigh aa quick to drawi.
Colonel Todhunter. Their menace die
not Invite resistance. The raau sav
this truth Instantly. Colonel Todhunt
er's steady eyes he'd bis. The colonel
spoke to the girl without looking at her.
"Oit off there to one side. Lot tie
May." he aaid "Quick:"
The girl sprang from under the knife.
"Thank God, you come. Colonel Tod
Uuoter:" she cried. "Thank Godoh,
And ut the girl's cry tbe man laughed
aloud, He threw his knife to the door.
Then, empty handed, he stood cont rout
Tbe trial of Tom Strickland hud been
relentlessly hurried to tbe day of its
closing by a political prosecution work
lay; through a complaisant Judge servile
to machine Influence.
Prom that early moment of the selec
tion of a. Jury the truth of a merciless
haste was In evidence. It was explain
ed by the court that there was lucra
tive need for aa little delay as might
be possible, the docket being crowded
and many cases remaining to be dis
posed of during the present term. The
grim fact was that Colonel Strickland's
enemies felt sure ef a conviction and
were determined tbat the verdict
should be rendered In time to remove
whatever peril of his nomination might
The evidence scored heart'. against
Tom fmm the start
There was plainly sounded a note of
somewhat insolent confidence, almost
like Jubilation. in the swtft announce
ment of the state's readinet-s for trial.
Colonel Bill Strickland, gray and pluch
ed of f.-ice, recognized Its Instant men
ace. H.s closely shut lips broke their
rigid lice piteously. precisely as they
bad done when Tom was brought Into
court and took his seat confronting the
At ...v ti;ui moment a swift flash of
inticipated triumph leaped into tie
eyes of old Ephraim Tucker, sitting
with the state's counsel. Tom's father
saw this, and bis jaws Bet bard at the
"They're feeling pretty sure of a con
viction," be whispered to Major Gentry
Dryden. "Is it likely they've obtained
evidence against Tom that -we don't
know anything about?"
Tbe lawyer shoot: his head. "I hard-
.I... ... -t.-. t i.li !
can't figure out how TbcVu Te able '
L " r, inff, J Z , - !
to spring a surprise on us.'
Hut one sinister sentence in the pros
ecuting attorney's opening statement
to the Jury undeceived him.
We shall prove, gentlemen, beyond
a reasonable doubt." the state's counsel ! M,ss Lottie-Mny Doggett bad not an
said, "the motive which, we claim, led ! swered to their names when called as
Thomas W. Strickland to slay Stam- witnesses for the prosecution. The
ford Tucker. aDd then"-moving a step deputy sheriff sent to brirg them into
nearer to the jury and lifting one hand i oourt haJ returned later and announced
in.T.rKiv.iv"hnvin-- nrnrpii tills w : that he had been unable to find them.
shall establish by the testimony of an
eyewitness the fact of Thomas W.
Strickland's presence at the sc-ene of
the murder at the time of its commission."
Major Gentrv Dryden. in spite of j he case against Tom Mrickiand be
blmself. started at hearing this crush- ' K"n io ume its most ominous aspect
lng announcement. Something of fierce ! immediately following the testimony
resentment, pathetic in its impotencv. i of Wradfleld. the hardware denier,
showed in Colonel Strickland's grizzled I Tlie P"ting attorney turned,
countenace. Tom's face, a helpless per- j mlHoR. from a whispered eousulta
plexltv In his eves, went deadly white. tlou with old Ephraim Tucker.
The atmosphere been me tense with I "Cal1 Abraham L. Tolliver'" be said,
the sudden dramatic grip of the situa- I A nPFro lnan aDout forty -vears of
tion thus crented i ope ,,0,c tne stand in answer to the
And the bearing of testimonv for ; sheriffs cry. He seemed frightened
the state began. j al,a reluctant to testify.
It went forward with merciless pre- j "Wnut s ynr name?"
cislon aud dispatch, a certainty and "My name is Abram Lincoln Tolliver.
rapMitv well ordered as to be over- suh-dass my name."
whelming in moral effect "Wnat ' 'our occupation. Abram-
Th. o.Ur.nP wn rrn.llr nrrnlnct whit do .VOU do to make a living?"
f , s.rinn,,,.! t. -i
farmer and bis son. testified to finding
the dead bodv of Stam Tucker bv the
roadside. t a point midwav lween
the Tucker borne and the town cf I
Nineveh, at daybreak on the morn- I
lng of the 27th day of July just past
,, ., .,,,,' .. . ' . ' t '
sell garden produce. The dead mnn
lay on his back Just at the edge of the
road. There was a bullet bole in his
forehead. A pistol, with one chamber
empty lay an Inch or two distant from
his right band. The witnesses bad
hurried Into Nineveh and notified the
Simeon P.lrdsong testified thnt bad
feeling had existed between Thomas
W. Strickland and Stamford Tucker
ince the biuht of the clash betweev
"Hands up, Chickasaw."
the Strickland and Yancey faction at
the opening rally of tbe Strickland
campaign. The witness stated that the
accused at tbat time made threats to
"get even" with Tucker for attempt
ing to break up the Strickland meet
ing. On tbe following day the accused
had oienly insulted Tucker in tbe bar
room of tbe Nineveh hotel and had
knocked him down a short time later
when they again met in the same place,
It was generally believed tbat there
would be a bloody encounter Deiween
them before tbe campaign closed. Otber
associates cf the dead man and the ac-
cused testified to the same facts.
j Mrs. Todhunter. whose appearance
j as a witnet for the state was a dra-1
watic surprise and who was pitifully j
Agitated, testified to the fact of tt'
accusation made against Thomas W. j
i Strickland by Lcttie-May Doggett at (
'the reception and bop given by the;
j Nineveh Light Infantry, and ber test!- j
! mony was supported by tbat of several j
' other ladies who heard the accusation,
Nicholas Bledsoe, the bartender in
' the saloon frequented hy tbe Yancey
I Tucker faction, testified to the facts of
I the two visits to his place made by the
accused on the forenoon and evening
of the C6th day of July jii3t past On
the occasion of the latter visit the ac
cused had told him that Stamford
Tucker was the man whom Lottie-May
Doggett should rightfully have charg
ed with her ruin; that tbe girl bad
told him, the accused, of Tucker's
meeting her secretly, and that be
meant" to make Tucker acknowledge
the truth publicly or else kill blm.
This witness' testimony established
the hour of S:20 on that night as the
J exact time at which Tom Strickland
' had left the barroom to go out to the
Tucker home for the purpose of com
pelling Stamford Tucker to agree to
make such an acknowledgment or of
forcing a hostile meeting in the event
of his refusal.
White haired Mrs. Tucker, the dead
man's mother: Katnerine Tucker, bis
sister, and Ellen Barry, domestic In
the Tucker home, testified that Stam
ford Tucker had left the house at or
about S:30 o'clock on the night of the
2Cth of July past, saying that he might
be late in returning. He had not told
tbera where be was going. They had
believed he was going into the town
Dr. Longford, the county coronor,
testified to the established facts of the
Inquest that had resulted in a verdict
holding Thomas W. Strickland for the
killing of Stamford Tucker.
Luther Bradfield. proprietor of a
hardware store In Nineveh, testified
chased a revolver from him on the
morning after the opening of. the
town hnll He identified the weapon
taken from the accused at the time of
bis arrest as the one thus purchased,
and stated tbat tbe bullet found in
Stamford Tucker's brain was fired
from a pistol of the same caliber.
Colonel Thurston T. Todhunter and
This had occasioned much surprise:
but. as both the state and the defense
felt assured of their appearance at al-'
most nnv moment, the examination of!
other witnesses proceeded.
"Mostly I ketches fish. suh. I hunts'
son,e- to- 011,1 1 sets, traP Sv coon
"nd D,,nk down v"nder ,n de BlutU
Bo"0"' s"awPs- suh- , , ,
"6 you. Abe. on the night
"u,-r , u ,
. V? de "f.,1 s rr n dis
henh town o Mnereh. and atter dat I
uii uty way iu wuar 1 uoue goi
my.camp in de bottom lands, suh."
"What time did you leave the town
of Nineveh to go to your camp in the
"I lef dess a li'l while atter half at
ter 8. suh."
"How do you know this?"
" 'Case I done ax Ben Dalton. de cul
lud man whar I been visltin. what was
de time dess as I was a-tellln' bim
"What road did you take to go to
your camp in the Black Bottoms?"
"Why. suh. 'cose I took'n de Blnck
Bottoms road, suh leas'ways 'twell I
comes to a li'l hog path what leads
down Into de big swamps offn dat-ar
"How far is It from town before you
come to that hog path. Abe?"
I "Dess 'bout'n a mile. suh. ter de bes'
i o' my knowledge and speakin' sorter
offhand lak, suh."
"Do you know where the Tucker
place is on the Black Bottoms road?"
"Yass. suh "
"Is that path of which you speak
more or less than halfway to the Tuck
er place as you go out from town?"
"nit dess a li'l mo'n halfways. suh."
"Now. Abram. ' and the p: isecuting
attorney straightened to his f 11 height
and spoke with especial earnestness.
"I want you to tell tbe Jury exactly
what happened to you on your way to
your camp in the Biack Bottoms that
ight Tell it In your own wny Just as
Tbe witness looked at his question
er with apprehension In his childlike
"Mistah Cromwell, you you done
gimme yo' wu'd dey ain't no barm
a-comin' to tne ef I tells dat?" be cried
appeaangiy. "And you done tole me
I hatter tell it whur' I wants to er
no. Ain't dat so?"
"Tbat is the truth, Abe. The law
compels you to testify to the facts of
your knowledge tearing upon this
case. . And it is the law's Intent that no
harm shall come to yon for so doing."
The witness began in a low voice.
"Dey wa'n't nothin' happened to me
'twell I corns nigh to dat ar hog path
what cuts off inter de bottoms," he
said. "Dess fo' I got dar, suh, I heern
sbootin' one shot and den annurr'.
bit seem lak ter me. suh. I was skeer-
j w cen i hMr dat snootl
geem lak I better not go on tec whar
i ,t,o' ter nn smack into it. Mistah
i Cromwell yass. snn. I" a-teilin' tt
j ter de Jury. suh. So huccome I done
J hid in de brush side o' de road. suh.
laylu flat on de groun. And dar I
jhe witness hesitated.
"Go on," sid. the. prosecuting attor-
uey. rTcll the Jury precisely what j 'fne request was granted. J
happened next." j Taking hasty notes meanwhile. Ma-J
."I lay dar. lak 1 say." resumed theljor Dryden was deep in consultation !
witness, "when all of a sudden !ak a j with Colonel Todhunter. Suddenly he !
mnn come down de ro.id Turn whar I stood erect 'and faced the trial judge,
heern de shootin'. He pass straight j bis eves ablaze with excitement !
by me on de road, and he seem to be
Btaggerin lak. He was talkin' to hls
se'f ns he pass whar I was hidin' in
de brush. He had his pistol swlngin'
in his hand. sub. lak a man what was
too excited to put it back atter he use jff.
The prosecuting attorney moved a
step nearer the witness. "You saw
that man plainly. Abe?" he asked.
"Y'ou got a good look at his face?"
"Yass. suh. Hit was a bright moon
light night., I seen dat ar man dess
as plain as I done see you (lis hyar
"Did you recognize him?"
"Yass. suh. I knowed him soon's I
set eyes on his face, suh."
"Do you see him in this courtroom
"Point him out to the Jury, Abe."
The negro, now feeling reassured, lev
eled his black finger, at Tom Strickland
dramatically. The eyes of the two. the
white man and tbe black, met. each
holding the other's as if fascinated.
In those of the witness there was a
sort of histrionic relish of the value of
the situation tempered by a latent ap
prehension. In those of the accused
there was a strange and pitiful per
plexity. "Dass him. suh," spoke the witness.
"Hit was MistaU Tom Strickland what
I seen passin' me on dat ar road, suh.
Lawdy massy: I done know him since
! he wa'n't mo'n knee high to a duck.
There was a sudden stir throughout
the courtroom, a. movement of tense
excitement, followed by a sinister hush.
"After you saw and recognized this
man," said the prosecuting attorney,
"what happened then?"
"I laid risht dar 'twell he done gone
out o' sight, suh. He was a-goin" in to-
town, and I dose keep my eyes
on him 'twell he turn a ben' in de road
aud I cain't see him no mo'. Den I
wait 'twell 1 shu" he ain't a-comin"
bock. Atter dat, I got up and started
on my way, keepin' in de shadow side
o' de road."
Again the witness paused.
"Well?" asked the prosecuting attor
ney. "Tell the jury what happeued
Tbe witness shuffled uneasily in his
chair, something of awe in his black
"I I had come purty nigh to do hog
path whar 1 was to strike off inter de
bottom lands." he resumed, "when I
stumbled ovah sump'in a-layin' on de
groun'. part in de rond and part In de
grass hide o' de road."
He wiped his face with his open
palm. "Hit was a man" he said aud
then, his voice solemn "and de inau
was dead. He been shot. I seen de
place whar he shot right in de head,
'twlx' de eyes, on'y des a li'l bit high
er up. When I stumble ovah hiui and
uigh fall I stretch out my hand, down
lak, and hit tech de place whar he
been shot anl got all bloody."
The negro shuddered.
"Did you see the face of this man?"
asked the prosecuting attorney.
"Did you recognize it?"'
"Abram," said the prosecuting attor
ney, "tell the jury who the dead man
was whose body you thus found and
whose face you saw and recognized."
"Hit was young Mistah Stamford
Tucker." the witness made answer.
"I knowed him. suh. dess as well as I
know Mistah Tom Strickland settin'
right hyar 'fo' my eyes, suh.'"
The prosecuting attorney waited a
moment, bis shrewd eyes studying tbe
faces of the Jurors.
"Abe." be asked, "why didn't you at
once report the finding of Stamford
Tucker's dead body and the seeing of
Thomas W. Strickland, pistol in hand.
as be came away from the spot where
that body lay?"
The witness shook bis head stubborn
ly. "'Twan't none o' my business,
suh." be replied. "Hit's a mighty fool
nigger what goes mixin' blss'ef up In a
shootln' scrape 'twix' two white gent'
mun. suh. I was steered ter do it. suh
dass why and I dess pick up my feet
and make tracks fas' as 1 could to
whar my camp in de bottom lands was,
suh. And you ain't heern no wu'd
'bout'n what I seen, and you ain't had
me fotched to yo' office, 'cept'n I was
fool ernuff ter tell dat ar ole Isr'el
Fant what 1 run ercross down in de
bottom lands, suh!"
The state's attorney turned to the
counsel for the defense. "You may
take the v.ltEeas." he said.
A searching cross examination railed
to weaken In any respect the testimo
ny Just given. At its conclusion Major
Gentry Dryden whispered earnestly
with Colonel Bill Strickland.
It was plainly a dispirited and hope
less conference. Colonel Strickland
leaned back wearily at the end.
"It can't make any difference," he
muttered sadly. "They've got the rope
around Tom's neck now."
And. although the words were not
audible, this certainty ot conviction
seemed to be in the thought of alL
Into the Jurors' faces there came a
look of pity as their eyes met those of
the accused man. the latter perplexed,
HE state rests Its ease." an
nounced the prosecuting at
torney. A profound and omi
nous silence followed.
It was broken by the entrance of
Colonel Todhunter into the courtroom.
He came through a door opening from
the sheriff's office in the rear. His
clothing was covered with dust, as of
hurried travel along sun scorched roads.
He made his way direct to where Colo-
Eel Bill Strickland and Major Gentry
Dryden were sitting. The latter rose
a moment later.
- "I beg the court's Indulgence for a
little time." he said hurriedly. "An ad-
Journment Is not osked-tnerely orpor-
tiuiity for a brief conference."
"May it please the court." he said.
new evidence of a most Important
character has just come into possession ,
cf counsel for the defense."
Then he turned to the Nineveh sher-
Call Lottie-May Doggett." be
said. Lottie-May Doggett. emerging
from the sheriff's own room., took the
stand in nuswer to his call.
The murmur of excitement that had i
swept through the courtroom at hear
ing Major Gentry Dryden's announce
ment sank into absolute sileuce as the
girl confronted the crowd. She her
self was deadly pale.
"Where were you. Miss Doggett."
asked Major Dryden. following the
necessary questions as to the witness"
name, place of residence ana the like,
"on the morning of the 27th day of
July just past?"
. "I was at home that mornin', suh."
"Were you alone there?"
"Yes, suh. after grandfather left me.
soon as he got his breakfas' until
Colonel Todhunter come there, maybe j
some two hours later'n tbat, suh."
"What did Colonel Todhunter come
to see you about?'
"He came to tell me that Stam Tuck
er had been shot and killed the night
befo" and tbat Tom Strickland had
been arrested for killin' him."
"Was that the first you had heard cf
Stam Tucker's death?"
"Did you know before then that a
threat against Stamford Tucker's life
had been made?"
"Did you know by whom that threat
had been made?"
"Yes. sub. I knowed tho mnn who
made it. He made it to me when bim
and me was alone together."
"Who was that man. Miss Doggett?"
"It was Jesse Bream, suh 'Chicka
saw Jesse' folks here in Nineveh calls
"Who was that man, Miss Doggett?"
bim. 'cause they say his old grand
mammy what came from Tennessee
had Chickasaw blood lu her, suh."
"When diil Jesse Bream make this
threat agniust Stamford Tucker's life
in your presence?"
"Ou the meruit)' after that party
what the soldier company here lu Nine
veh gavu nt the hotel, suh."
"What led him to make the threat?"
"Somethin" thnt I told him about
Stam Tucker, suh; somethin' that bad
come up at the party I just spoke of."
lou must be more definite than this.
! if you please. Miss Doggett. What had
, you told Jesse Bream that caused him
to make this threat?"
"He come to see me about somethin"
I had said to Mrs. Todhunter the nigbt
befo' at the party. They shamed me
that night, and I told Mrs. Todhunter
that Tom Strickland was the man who
had brought that ahnine on me. And
then Jesse Bream came to see me the
next mornin". He bnd beeu worryin'
me to marry him. aud he still wanted
to marry me, but be said Ke was goto'
to kill Tom Strickland for wrongin'
me. and it was then I told him about
"What about Stam Tucker, Miss Dog
gett?" "Why I I got skeered for Tom
Strickland, suh and and well, 'fo' I
knowed what I was a-sayin' I told
Jesse the truth that it was Stam Tuck -
er and not Tom Strickland who had
brought my shame 'pou me. And it I
was then that Jesse said he meant to!
waylay and kill Stam Tucker the first
"Why did you not tell Colonel Tod
"'Cause I was afeared to, suh. Jesse
had done told me that be was n-troin'
I to do it for my sake and that if I ever
go much as breathed a word of It he
would kill me, too. but thnt he'd take
me away end marry me if I didn't He
would ha' killed me too.
thnt mighty well."
"Had you promised Jesse Bream to
go away with him?"
"Y'es, suh, I had. I wanted to get
away from Nineveh, where I'd been
shamed and disgraced, and he was the
only man what would ha' married mo
after that. I might ha' told Colonel
Todhunter the truth if I hadn't leen
afeared o' Jesse and if I hadn't cn , ncr did I believe tl.nt bo was gu.ltj
that it would be eveuiu' things up with '' wrongin' Lottie-May. He himself
Tom Strickland as well as Jesse had, tad told me that the girl confessed to
evened 'em np with Stam Tucker If I ; i"n that Stamford Tucker bad been
went owav with him." j makin' love to ber secretly. I felt sure
"What do you mean by evening np ' n my own mind that Stamford Tucker
fhinf- ifh Xnm Ktrlck-laiid? You have 'ad been killed for wrongin' Lottie-
Just testified wider oath that Tom
Strickland bf.d done you no wrong."
. The girl was silent for a moment
Her face flushed a dark red and then
went whi'n? again.
"Tom Strickland made me eat my
heart out for him!" she cried sudden-
ly. shame and a desperate defiance in
S the passionate eyes that confronted
her audience. "He wouldn't see that
I loved him bcttcr'n anything else In I
all this world und that I wauteil him
to love mo the same way. And the (
reason he wouldn't see what 1 was a!- j
ways n-showin" him was th:it be was
80 dl'ad in ,ove wltn J!is Mary Tod- ;
hunter. That's what made me tell
that lie against him when 1 knowed j
nnt xh"s- Todhunter was a-goin' to I
ask me t0 ,eavo the Party." j
mere was a puuui ureas m tne . to overhear what they was a-sa.vin
girl's voice. j ,en they met In t!:at clump o' trees
"I didn't care the tip of my finger ! between the Doggett house and the
for Jesse Bream:" she cried. "I bated I Hansoms' cabin, suh. She heard all tbat
and despised bim. But he was willin' j wet on between 'eai. suh. She was
to marry me and take me away from j waitin' for me when I got home from
Nineveh, and so I kep' my mouth shot ' Colonel Bill Strickland's the night be
tnd waited for him to come and do it." j fore this trial began, and she told me
"I am going to ask you. Miss Dog- .;(, wnoie storv."
gett." ' said Major Gentry Dryden.
"when was the first time you saw
Jesse Bream after Colonel Todhun
ter"s visit to you that day?"
"I didn't see him till the day before
this here trial begun, suh. He had
gone away to fix things up for mar
ryin' me and takin' me down some
where in Oklahoma, and he didn't
come back till then."
"What time of the day did you see
"I reckon 'twas 'long about three or
fo o'clock in the day, suh. He didn't
come clear to the house 'cause he saw
grandfather settin' on the front gal
lery. But bo give a whistle I knew.
and I went out and met bim."
"Where did you meet him?"
"In a little clump o' woods 'cross the
road, not far from the old cabin where
Aunt Mirandy Ransom and old Jed
Ransom, her husband, two colored peo
ple, are Hvin", suh."
"What had he come to see you
"He come to tell me that ever'thing
was ready for us to run away that
very night. He was plannin' to drive
over into Ralls county, and we'd get
married there and then start for'Okla
horaa. And he'd been drinkin' and was
braggin' about how he'd killed Stam
Tucker. It was then I knowed for the
first time, from his own Hps, that It
was him that killed Stam. but I'd been
certain of it in my mind ail the time."
"Did you consent to go away wilh
"Yes, suh. and we went away togeth
er. Tbe first day and night he got to
drinkiu', aud when we stopped at the !
hotel in Sidon he quarreled with me,
keepin' on savin' that I was iu love
about who did really murder Stam
Tucker if I got half a chance. And
sometuin i sam men anoni my wisn-
in' I had told the truth at first skeered I
bim. 'Stead o' stayin in Sidon till he
was ready to go straight to Oklahoma,
he took me away from there the next
day. We went fur, too. and. he was al
ways a-watchin"'me. At daybreak one
mornin' we come to a tumbledown
cabin deep in the woods, and he said
that's where we'd stay till dark, and
then I beguu to be skeered myself."
"Of what were you afraid?"
"I begun to feel skeered that he was
a-goin' to kill me. We bad quarreled
and quarreled, and whenever I lost my
temper good and proper I told him the
truth tbat I oughtn't to leave Tom'
Strickland to be bung when I' knowed
Tom wasn't guilty and knowed who
was. Then well, all of a sudden we
had our biggest quarrel, and what I'd
been skeered of come to pass!"
"What do you mean by that. Miss
"I mean that Chickasaw Jesse '.rled
to kill me. suh. He sorter went crazy
and jumped for ine with his bowie
knife in his hand, and I'd ha' been
dead tbe next minute If it hadn't been
for Colonel Todhunter, suh."
'For Colonel Todhunter?"
"Yes. suh. Colonel Todhunter bnst
d in the door o" the cabin that very
minute, bringin' the sheriff o' Ralls
county along with him. Him nnd the
sheriff both had their pistols sighted on
Jesse and made him throw bis knife
down. And then I done what I'd want
ed to do all the time. I told them 's
was Chickasaw Jesse Bream who had
killed Stam Tucker."
"And what happened when you did
The girl shivered. "I don't liko to
think about it. He made me fee! like
a cowardly bound dog!" she said, a
new shame in her reckless eyes. "Jesse
Bream Just laughed and folded his
arms and looked at me and then at
Colonel Todhunter and the sheriff and
said thnt I told the truth. 'I killed
Stum Tucker because be ruined Iottie
May,' be said, smllin". 'And I run
away with her to marry her. But she's
tellin' the truth now to get suet t" me.
and I don't care what comes next.
Take me and hang me. I'm done!' "
A moment later the witness was
', turned ove
to the state. The cross
' examination strengthened rather than
shook her( testimony for the defense,
Briefly under the questioning of the
j leading counsel for the defense Colonel
Todhunter told of his visit to Lottie
May Doggett on the forenoon following
the murder of Stamford Tucker.
"Where did you go. Colonel Todhun
ter." asked Major Dryden. "when you
j left Doggett'
house after that
'I went to a cabin across the road.
just a few yards down from the Dog-
! Bett8' Bate, to see Aunt Mirandy Ran-
som, an old colored woman who lived
"What was your reason for wanting
to see Miranda Ransom thnt time.
"I wanted to engage her to keep a
close watch on the girl. Ijttle-May
Doggett. s;:h. I did not believe that
Tom Strickland killed Stamford Tuck
May Doggett. nnd this would mean
that he was killed by some mnn who
loved Lottie-May nnd knew that Stam
ford Tucker bad wronged her or that
the girl ber;lf had killed him. I want
ed somcUidy to watch that !ione. and I
knew I could de;end on Aunt Mirandy
Ransom lietrer'n on nnyll.v else."
"Did you see thia woman, Miranda
"1 did. sua. She promised to keep a
c!oe watch on the girl aud on the
bouse.' and she kept her word. It was
through ber tbat I learned tlie news
that sent me away to Kalis county
lookln" for Chickasaw Jesse Bream and
Lottie - May Doggett. sub."
-p( vou mean that she learned of
tileir flij;tit. Colonel Todhunter?"
"Yes. sua. She trep' up c lose enough
"What did you do then. Colonel Tod
hunter?" j "There wasn't but one thing to be
i done. suh. if Chickasaw Jesse was to
j be caught and Tom Strickland saved
from bein' found guilty of murderin'
j Stam Tucker. Thnt one thing was to
follow Jesse Bream and Lottie-May
Doggett without losin' a minute's time
and arrest him befo" he got out o' the
The witness then confirmed in detail
that part of the girl's testimony relat
ing to the capture of Jesse Bream.
"Did this man. Jesse Bream, make a
J confession of his guilt as being the
murderer of Stamford Tucker?"
"Yes. suh. Aud. furthermore, under
oath, he told a mighty strange story
of a bappenin' that In itself might ha'
hung Tom Strickland."
There was a quick stir of heightened
dramatic expectancy in the courtroom.
Major Gentry Dryden paused until U
"What was that strange story. Colo
nel Todhunter," he asked, "which, as
you have just testified, the man Jesse
Bream told you and the sheriff of
Ralls county under oath?"
"He told me. suh. that Tom Strick
land himself appeared on the scene
of the murder almost the next moment.
A I hollered to Stam Tucker, cussin'
him and tellin" him that I was a-goin'
to kill him for bavin' wronged Lottie
May.' said Chickasaw Jesse Bream,
'Stam Tucker drew his gun aud tired
just the minit 1 fired. My shot got
him, but his'n didu't tech me. When,
I saw that he was a-layin' still 1 ran
up to his body, looked down and saw
flint I li-wl f ill! 1 L-.il liim thrrt!fh ttia
betwet.n the eyeS. aud that
in - wtniui lnil Thon 1 tutrim1 nml
j M run dowQ road
j th q Ninevca.
" 'l hadn't gone any ways hardly
when a man came to'ards me on that
road. Wheu he saw me he laughed,,
aud the next miuit he outs with liiiV
gun and fires at me. I was skeered
'cause I didn't want to be recognized '
nnd I turns and runs straight througb
tbe woods, lookin' back once or twice
And that man came to the edge of t Iie
woods, and I beard him laugh! and
then mutter like he was drunk aud
talkin' to himself, and then he delib
erately turned back on tlie Black Bot
toms road and went to'ards town.' "
"Did Jesse Bream tell you and the
sheriff o Ralls county. Colonel Tod
hunter. that he recognized the man
whom be thus met after having killed
"lie did. suh."
"What was that man's nnrvrl"
"It was Thomas W. Strick'j.nd. suh.
Chickasaw Jesse Bream swears that
he saw bim plainly, and be takes bis
oath that it was Tom Strickland."
"Did Jesse Bream tell you what be
did after that encounter?"
"Yes. suh. He says that he lay out
In the woods for about nn hour aud
"What are they a-goin to do to m
that then be went back on tbe road
and came Into town aud the next tiny
he went to Oklahoma, not get tin' back .
bere to Nineveh until the day before
the trial began, sub."
There wa a momentary pause.
"Colonel Todhunter." resumed Major
Dryden quietly. "Is there any record
of this confession?"
"Yes. suh. Tlie confession is written,
sworn to and signed by Jesse I '.ream.
It is attested by two competent wit
nesses. It Is lu the possession of the
i-lieriff of Ralls" ronnty. And the sher
iff of Ralls county h::s Jiit delivered
th" person of Jesse Bream to the Jail
authorities here In Nineveh, bill), charg
ln' him. on his own confession, with
the murder of Stamford Tucker."
"May it please the court." mild Major
Dryden. "the .-fense v.iil next place
Iti evidence thi.s sworn confession M
Jee Bream and ask that Use case
against Tho:xian W. Strickland, charged
with the murder of Stamford Tucker,
There v.jis a su!rten and tensely-dreu
malic stir through the- :v.v,!-d -viri-hkiiu.
It w.n f ill'.vvcd by a trlaui
phn it - " - f Tom
tContlaueJ on Tagc Fourteen.)