Old West Book Review: Where the Bullets Fly, A Sheriff Aaron Mackey Western

Sheriff Aaron Mackey WesternWhere the Bullets Fly, A Sheriff Aaron Mackey Western, Terrence McCauley, Pinnacle Books, $7.99, Paperback. Western fiction.

The first book in the Sheriff Aaron Mackey series, this story introduces readers to Aaron Mackey, the sheriff of Dover Station in Montana Territory.  Mackey is an ex- cavalry officer, now sheriff.  His deputy is a black man who once rode with him in the cavalry.  Together, these men try to keep law and order, but when a crazy outlaw named Duramont, leading a band of killers, appears on the scene, Mackey has more than his share of trouble.

Dover Station is surrounded by the Duramont gang, a group of “soiled doves” become Duramont’s hostages along with Mackey’s mistress, who owns the local hotel.  The outlaws need guns, horses and supplies while they are on a ride through the west, murdering and robbing along the way.  Mackey must rely on a few faithful buddies for help since most of the townspeople understandably want to be left alone without losing their hides.  Meanwhile, Mackey’s wife, a beautiful young shrew who hates him, finds out about his mistress and the plot thickens.

Between the killers, the robbers, nighttime ambushes, flying dynamite, burned buildings, runaway stagecoaches and feuding women, the sheriff has more than his hands full.  And did I mention he is in the middle of all this while battling pneumonia?

If you like plenty of western action, this is the book for you.

Dark Territory, A Sheriff Aaron Mackey Western, Terrence McCauley, Pinnacle Books, $7.99, Paperback.  Western fiction.

This second book in the Aaron Mackey series finds Mackey once again keeping law and order in his old Montana home town of Dover Station.  This time a group of investors have descended upon the town with an eye on taking over the business interests of this booming community.  Mackey determines to defend his town, friends and relatives from those who are devious and have selfish interests in the local mining ranching, and railroads.

Shootouts, bad actors, murder, skullduggery and unresolved love interests all present a myriad of problems to be solved by the sheriff.  By now readers have become used to his hair-trigger temper and no-nonsense demeanor, and we can only wonder what will come next in the life of this hero if there is a Book Three.

Editor’s Notes: The reviewer Phyllis Morreale-de la Garza is the author of numerous books about the Old West including the novel, Nine Days at Dragoon Springs, published by Silk Label Books, P.O. Box 399, Unionville, New York 10988 www.silklabelbooks.com

*Courtesy of Chronicle of the Old West newspaper, for more click HERE.

The Rufus Buck Gang

Rufus Buck was a Ute Indian living in the Indian Territory. The Rufus Buck Gang comprised of four Creek Indians and a combination Creek and black. All of them had served time in jail for minor offenses.
           
Buck supposedly boasted, “That his outfit would make a record that would sweep all the other gangs of the territory into insignificance.” And on July 27, 1895, the gang started a thirteen-day crime spree that did exactly that.
               
They killed Deputy Marshal John Garrett. They came across a Mrs. Wilson. She was kidnapped and violated. From there they saw Gus Chambers with some horses. When he resisted, the Buck Gang killed him. They next robbed a stockman, taking his clothes and boots. Fortunately, he was able to escape in a hail of bullets. Two days later, they invaded the home of Rosetta Hassan. She was violated in front of her husband and children.
 
The Rufus Buck Gang
The gang was arrested, and brought before Hanging Judge Isaac Parker, and they were sentenced to be hanged. He scheduled it for July 1, 1896 between nine in the morning and five in the evening.
 
Quite possibly Judge Parker should have stated an exact time, because, on the day of the hanging, one of the gang members said he wanted to be hanged at ten in the morning so his body could be on the 11:30 train. Rufus Buck protested, saying that if he was hanged that early, there would be a several hour delay before his body could be on the appropriate train. The Rufus Buck Gang then decided they wanted to be hanged separately.
 
Marshal Crump smiled, set the time for 1:00, and hanged them all at one time.

Wild Bill Hickok Fighting

Wild Bill Hickok fightingOn July 21, 1870 Deputy U.S. Marshal Wild Bill Hickok was in a bar in Hayes City, Kansas when two of a group of five Seventh Cavalry troopers suddenly attacked him from behind. It’s not quite clear what provoked the attack, but there is thought it might have had something to do with an encounter Wild Bill had seven months earlier with Tom Custer, brother of George Custer and a member of the Seventh. But one thing is clear, you didn’t want to be on the wrong end of Wild Bill Hickok fighting.
           
One soldier held Wild Bill’s arms so he couldn’t fight back. A second put the muzzle of his pistol to Wild Bill’s ear and pulled the trigger. Nothing happened.
               
Now Wild Bill is fighting with super human strength. He got one pistol unholstered and shot one of the soldiers in the wrist and the side. Finally able to point his pistol at the man holding him, Hickok shot him in the knee. Released, Wild Bill then did the old stuntman trick of jumping through the window, breaking glass, rolling on the ground outside, and hightailing it out of the area.
 
It was a good thing too, because when word of the shooting got back to the Seventh’s headquarters a number of soldiers headed into Hayes City looking for Wild Bill. General Sheridan even ordered Hickok’s arrested. But it never took place.
 
The event, just as it happened, was something most people would find an amazing feat. But as with most of Hickok’s adventures, it immediately took on even larger proportions. At first newspapers said all five soldiers attacked Hickok. And some ten years later Wild Bill had taken on 15 troopers, killing 3, and being wounded 7 times. Now that’s a story you could tell with pride.

Chuckwagon: Making Tough Beef Tender

Here is an old west recipe for making tough beef tender:

1886 Daily Bee, Sacramento, California

Lay meat out smoothly and wipe it dry.  Take a coffee cup full of fine breadcrumbs, a little salt and pepper, a little powdered thyme or other sweet herb, and just enough milk to moisten to a stiff dressing.  Mix well and spread over the meat.  Roll it up and tie it up with twine.  Brown in salt pork fat, then put in half a pint of water.  Cover and cook.

The toughest meat is made tender and nutritious when cooked in this way. 

*Courtesy of Chronicle of the Old West newspaper, for more click HERE.

 

making tough beef tender

Jack Harris

Ben Thompson - Jack HarrisAs a young man, Jack Harris was a scout for the army, and he fought in revolutions in Central American. Returning to America, he hunted buffalo, served as a policeman, and did some serious gambling.
           
Settling down, he and Ernest Hart opened the Green Front Saloon in San Antonio. The Green Front was a first class establishment that even had a Vaudeville House on the second floor.
               
A wealthy man, involved in local politics, Jack was well liked in the San Antonio area.
 
But, as is often true, no matter how wealthy you are, or how many friends you have, it’s your enemies that determine your fate. Jack Harris had one enemy… Ben Thompson. For anyone who doesn’t know Ben, he was a hard case who took turns walking on both sides of the law. And, Ben wouldn’t back down to a buzz saw.
 
On July 11, 1882, after seething about a gambling dispute that took place two years earlier, Ben entered the Green Front Saloon demanding that Jack Harris get his guns and meet him in the street so they could have it out.
 
While Ben was standing in the street, Jack got a shotgun and went to one of the saloon’s windows. Before Jack could get off a shot, Ben saw him and shot Jack, killing him. Ben Thompson turned himself into the law, and pleading self-defense, was acquitted.
 
From this experience, one would think Ben Thompson would have realized enemies often determine your fate. But it wasn’t so. Because less than two years later Ben returned to the Vaudeville House, and the enemies he developed from killing Jack Harris put an end to his life. 
 Page 2 of 100 « 1  2  3  4  5 » ...  Last »