The Infamous Black Bird Southern Oregon History, Revised

Jackson County News: 1859

Jackson County Democratic Convention.

    There will be a Democratic County Convention held at Jacksonville on Saturday, the 2nd day of April next, 1 o'clock p.m., to elect six delegates to attend the Territorial or State Convention to be held at Salem on the 20th of April, 1859.
    It is recommended that precinct meetings be held in each precinct at the usual place of holding elections, on Saturday, the 26th day of March, 1859, at 1 o'clock, for the purpose of appointing delegates to attend the County Convention.
    County Committee.
Jacksonville, March 4, 1859.
Oregon Statesman, Salem, March 22, 1859, page 3

Southern Oregon. 
    The Crescent City Herald gives the following items from Southern Oregon:
    A man named Wilson was arrested at Jacksonville on 2nd May, charged with incest with his child, a girl about fourteen. There was great prejudice, says the Jacksonville Sentinel, existing against the prosecuting witness, and at the close of the examination he would have suffered violence from the people but for the protection of the officers. Wilson was held over in the sum of $1,000, and the bond was signed by no less than fourteen men, among whom were some of the most substantial citizens of the place, such as John Anderson, James Clugage, Brunner and others.
    A man named McKesson was killed lately, at Jacksonville, by Abel George. It seems that George was on a spree and continued jumping up behind McKesson, who was on horseback. McKesson finally dismounted and asked George "if it was him or his horse he wanted to ride?" when George killed him instantly with a knife. George was examined and committed for trial.
San Joaquin Republican, Stockton, California, May 28, 1859, page 3

Indian Massacre.
    Mr. George W. Brown, of this place, handed us, on last Saturday, a copy of the Sentinel, published in Jacksonville, Oregon, containing an account of the murder of his brother, A. J. Brown, and four other persons, by the Indians, about the first of May. He also gave us a letter from his brother, F. M. Brown, containing all the particulars.
    It seems the party left their homes, in Jacksonville or vicinity, for the purpose of selecting stock farms in a region of country as yet uninhabited. As they had no intentions of intruding on Indian territory, they, of course, entertained no apprehensions of an attack, but were well armed. After the day had passed on which the party was expected to return, their friends began to fear that they had fallen into the hands of the Indians. A party was immediately organized for the purpose of searching for them. They immediately started on the trail of the missing party. The first expedition failed in discovering any clue to their fate, except that two or three dead horses, shot with bullets, were discovered; they were identified as belonging to the missing men. A new expedition was organized, which finally succeeded in discovering the dead bodies of four of the party just as the search was about to be abandoned as hopeless. F. M. Brown and Indian Agent Abbott made the discovery. A correspondent of the Sentinel says:
    "The men had been assailed while lying in bed, as was very evident from their wounds. One was shot in the head, one had his head split open with an axe, one was shot in the breast and stabbed, and the other was shot through the breast. The throats of all were cut."
    Mr. Brown in his letter says: "I found our brother in the grave. He had his throat cut, and a gash on the side of the head made by an axe. The wound extended from the back of his ear to the middle of his forehead." The following are the names of the murdered men: A. J. Brown, Eli Ledford, Samuel Probst, James Crow and S. F. Conger. The body of Mr. Ledford had not been discovered, but doubtless he shared the fate of his companions. A volunteer company had started in pursuit of the Indians, but with what degree of success we have not learned.
    Mr. Brown had on his person about three hundred dollars in money at the time of his murder. Of course, the Indians appropriated it to their own use before burying his remains. He was born and reared in Butler County, in this state, and was, we understand, about 24 years of age at the time of his death.
Democrat & Sentinel, Ebensburg, Pennsylvania, July 6, 1859, page 2

    A FISHING COLONY.--A number of families have established a settlement at the mouth of Rogue River, and are doing a good business in catching and salting salmon and other fish. A short distance up the river are good mines, which yield a handsome remuneration to the laborer. The climate is very healthy, and the families are all contented with their new home.
Sonoma County Journal, Petaluma, California, August 26, 1859, page 2

Last revised May 12, 2017