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At the Manchester City Police Oou;t on March 20th, John Hancock, 8, Gorton streetj Ohorlfcon-on-Medlock, was charged with having stolen * gold watch and other artloles, the property of Oolonel Shelley, better known as " Mexican Joe," from the office of the olroua m Ohdpstow street goring the oonfasion whloh ocootred when the premises werebarnt down on Tuesday February 26th. Detective-Sergeant Gib* bona said he arretted the prisoner at the Grand Olroas, and asked him If he knew anything about a gold watoh. At first the prisoner dented all knowledge of the watoh, but at last be said he had found a gold watoh at the fire at Mexican Joe's In Ohepstow street. Witness further asked him if he knew anything about a revolver. He replied that be bad had a revolver, but had left It at the Peverii of the Peak Hotel, Obepstow street. That statement was found to be nntrue. When formally charged with the offence, be said be found the articles lv the street on the night of the fire. Oolonel Shelley identified the watoh as being his property, and stated that he valued It merely as a memento of a highly Interesting «vent. In 1879 an Apaohe chief named V totorio made a said 1 on his (Oolonel Shelley's) ranche at Pasodel Janoe, m Mexico, and pmled off bis wife and three children, killing the latter and bli oattlu, and reducing the plaoe to rain*, At that time he (Oolonel Shelley) was away fighting Against another band of Indians In his capacity of ohlef sooot to the Mox'oan army. As soon as he learned what had occurred, he burr ed back homa, and covered 182 miles la two days, killing three or four horses on the j >nrney. When he had reaohed home he fcund that to had been utterly, .destroyed. He at once organised a pursuit^ and followed the trail of Viotorio Into the Sierra Madre MonoUtat. He had not proceeded far when he oatae upon the bones of his three children lying by the i roadway, picked clean by the coyotes and buzzard*. He bad followed the trail for nine days when he oame upon the Indians, entrenched upon a ledge on the rooks, •nd through his glasses he saw his wife was witu thßW * ?? m * W ' Rod lm ** mediately surrounded ihe Indians, ftod, after an arduous Btruggle,yiofcorlo, finding the oase hopeless, fastened Mrs Shelley to a tree, after deapatohlug her with arrows, set fire to the tree, and her body was ooneumed In the fUmer. Unfortunately, ; Viotorio managed to e«o»pe, with three other of his braves, through a canyon whloh had pot been guarded by the pur* suera, »od joined another band of Apaohe Indians, led by Bonlto. Ultimately they were overtaken again, and Oolonel Shelley Billed Vtotorlo with his own band. On searching the dead body of the chief, Oolonel Shelley found his wife's watch obaln round his neok, and from it was suspended the watoh produoed In Court. It was ponsJderably damaged, owing to the ohlef having fallen a great distant down the rooks after he was shot. When the 001000 l returned to the headquarters of his troop at Monterey, he reported what had ooourred to General Trevanlon. A gentleman vho w»9 then m !M,exloo with Loid Aylesford afterwards identified the watah as one whloh had belonged to ap English nobleman who had been killed m the piountalna three or four years previously. Efforts were made to trace the owner, but without success. Lord Aylf s« ford offered to purchase the watoh, but Oolonel Shelley refused to part with It. The Mexican Government bad offered him £2000 for the relics taken from the Apache chief, but he refused the offer. They Inoluded tha eoalp of the '■' poo: old obief " and other articles which wore burnt at the fire. The prisoner was sent to gaol for three months with bard labor.


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Bibliographic details

A THRILLING BACKWOODS STORY., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2132, 23 May 1889

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A THRILLING BACKWOODS STORY. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2132, 23 May 1889

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