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LIFE IN THE BACKWOODS, Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2142, 4 June 1889
LIFE IN THE BACKWOODS
DESPEBATE FIGBT FOR A WIFE.
A despatoh from Douglai, Wyoming Territory, nlvea the following narrative : —Junes Kidd, who sells groceries for an Omaha house, and Minnie M'OooJ, a widow, eighteen years old, have had an extremely exciting wedding. Her name was Mia tie Rlohis when she ran away from he* home In lowa and beoame Robert M'Oool'a bride and tbe sharer of bis miner's cabin at Point of Bocks. M'Oool dlsoovered no gold, but oiught a ' fever and died after six months of wedded v llss. The pretty widow's friends teemed her appointment as station agent on tbe stage route at Dry Oheyenne, half way between h*re and Buffalo. The place Is headquarters for oittlemen and oowboys whose ranches extend a score of miles In every direotlon. Some of theie stookmen are wealthy, and all were devotees - at the window's anting. Women ate scarce In this country, aad Mrs M'Oool had a d'zm effarsot marttoge every week* She finally acoapted the biggest* and bravest of the cattlemen— Martin Hunton — and they were to be married m May and go east for the honeymoon. Tht widow kept tbe statlonhoose In good style, <nd was a good coo* as well ai a fatcinatfacr oooverflatlonallst. The occasional travelling men who stopped for a meal and attempted any familiarity fonnd she was a spirited woman as weJl. Kidd itlUhted from the stage last week aod took breakfast at Dry Oheyenne. He w»i a well dressed, blonde-hatred yonng Englishman, who, having dissipated bis share of a small fortune,- went manfully to work to earn a living, This was his first trip m Wyoming, and he had several customers of the houte to see In Buffalo. An accident that delayed tbe stage several hours gave Kidd and the woman an opportunity to beoome well acquainted They grew confidential. She admitted that the rough life of the platni did not suit her. Kidd told her of tht years be had wasted and sighed for home. Then they both sighed} and when the stage left It was understood that Kidd shoold return to Dry Oheyenne on Saturday and take the widow to a danoa that was to be given op a raooh twenty mile* miles from there. Business In Buffalo was despatched m short order, and tht yonng Englishman was by the wldow'i side at th» appointed time. He made the most of the daylight, and when they stattedfor the daooe the two hsd confessed their love for each other. Hunton had been informed of Kldd'r attentions by aeveral cattle men, who were not at all please* to see a dude drummer making such progress In the widow's affections. She Is a pretty little bUok-eyed thing, and every man In the region had constituted himself as a sort of watch dog ovet her happiness and her property. Hunton appe red on Saturday afternoon with a team of horses ready to take his betrothed to tbe danos. She Introduoad Kidd at an old I)wa friend, made tbe two shake hands, and gently urged Hunton to go to tbe danoa alone, promising to dtnot often with him, and pleading tht duties of |hoipitality as her excuse for ffoing with Kidd. Hnnton Bullen'y acquiesced, and before be departed the artful widow had secured his promiia that he would not harm the light* haired young Englishman, whom Hotton contemptuously dubbed a " tenderfoot,' 1 Kidd wasn't so tender but that be knew the peril of hie pokition. He aod the widow drove to tbe dance. When they arrived he di<) not unharness the horses, but left them where they oould be started home at a m ment's notice. The bill was a regular cowboy affair, with four mem to every woman, and ranch whiskey drinking and card playing. It was at Wheeled ranch. Wheeler is the bhoriff of tbe county, and a great friend of Hunton* Mrs Wheeler confided to the widow that there was going to be trouble, and she put K<dd on his guard. About eleven o'clock the oiwboys "rang la' 1 a danoa known as "DanTnoker" on the tenderfoot, when a rough looking fellow named "Lariat Joe," stepped up to Kidd and remarked, I guess your girl ought to be my partner." The Englishman tiled to avoid Joe, but tbe latter Intended to pick a quarrel. He grabbed Kldd's arm and htd him In the oentre"of the room before the Englishma' could turn. Then Joe was knooked down and there was a big uproar. Half-* dtx a men sprang at Ktdd, white Huoton gland from a corner, not forgettiDg his promise to the .widow. Quiok as a flub the drummer backed against a dosed door leading to a bedroom and drew two six shooters A doain •hots were fired, but In their eagerness to get at him the oowboys shoved and jostled one another so that K'dd's life was saved., One by one the lamp* were shattered by the oowboys, and Kidd began to feel homesick. He had wounded two men, tod felt a tinge of pain In his left arm where ft a bullet bad grezad it, " Throw np your hands, you fool," shouted Ed Cook, Hunton's foreman, who was. the leader of the assailants. For reply Kidd fired, and Oook fell with a bullet through his brain. With a wild yell the list light uai extinguished, and tbe crowd made a ruin foi tbe tenderfoot. Just as he weighing bit last shot and was wondering if the gang would kfok him to death or mercifully end his life with a bullet he was sefiai from behind and pulled suddenly Into'tht bed* room, while tbe door was as qrjloklv bolted again. The widow had saved his lift, with Mrs Wheeler's help. Without a> word the two tavern escaped Into the yard t only to find that their horses and waggon had been taken awny, 'There was still tht sound of a struggle In the dark ballroom, but Kidd kuew that his esoape would soon be known, A saddled and bridled horse stood In tbe barn, and plaolog the widow m front of him, Kidd mounted and galloped away. The eloping pair passed through here on Sunday night and went to Ohadron, Neb, where they were married. Kidd and tbe widow were much fatigued. They said they rode straight aoross tht oountry for six hours, and then got break* fait at a ranoher's cabin. They could get no horses, though, and it was not until noon that they secured an extra saddle horse. When they got to this city Kidd scoured a team and driver and they made all haste to get over the line Into Nebraska. It Is believed that they got ft train from a station thirty miles from Ohadron, and are now In stfety. Sheriff Williams, with Hunton, and a doion furious- cowboys, came 11 galloping Into town on Monday niornlng after thsj elopert. They were nearly ten hoar* behind; and soarpely stopped to. eat and refresh their horses before they resumed th.elr (rail. Hunton was terribly encaged, aod kept flnmlog hit resolve* *N th| whl'e he talked about the aflf .lr. It w. u learned ■ that the cowboys anerwled ofer oner one another, and fougtft (6c iefertj mlnntes In tee djrk softer eigape. of Which' they were unaware. In tbe fight, five bad been wounded, and Ed. Oook was dead When the pursuing pitty started after Kidd they went to the station at D.y Obeyenne, but found only some of hls^samples. Then they oame to Dongla?, but were, as already stated, many hours behind. They hnre not yet passed through this plaoa on their return- trip} but it la more than probable that they hava gone home hy another way, as their errand gained' them' no symcithy heraf K'dd'a bravery and the ladjrs devqtlel are the talk of tbls part of the country, » T. I i ' » . '
LIFE IN THE BACKWOODS, Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2142, 4 June 1889
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