Saturday, March 10, 2012

the lady's roles

So why was Frank shot? Through watching some old John Wayne  movies I could think of a long list of possibilities:
  • land disputes
  • animals
  • family feuds
  • love
  • honor
Well of your options which would you think is the reason for the poor Baccus family? land? family? love?... honor?

Well if you guessed honor, you are on the right track.

The disagreement between the Baccus and Pettis families seemed to go on for a few years.  The story is hard to follow- and I may be reading it wrong, but here is my simplified interpretation. 

Mr. Pettis wife (who is never named) had a disagreement with Martha Baccus.  After this disagreement rumors started to fly about these two ladies, circulated by the said two ladies.  The only adverb used to describe the rumors were "scandalized." The rumors were never specified.  But as we all know about rumors they start off little and can quickly become huge.

Mr. Pettis was defending his wife's honor.  In the court case it says the Baccus family apologized for what was said.   I  think it is a little obvious that it was not accepted.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

The effects

Frank was killed when he was 38 years old, hist wife was 26, and his oldest child 8 and his youngest just born, or not born yet.  I often wonder about his wife Martha who suddenly at 26 was left a widow with young children to raise.  She lived in the same area (possibly even the same home) until 1963, at which point she died at age 88. She is buried next to Frank in the Rose Hill Cemetery in Merkle Texas.  I imagine life was hard for Martha. the shock of loosing her husband was probably very hard on her and her children.  Did Martha play a role in Franks death?

Next week that question will be answered. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

A Day in March Part 2

"Frank you have scandalized my family enough" as he said this he jerked his gun from his wagon and raised his Winchester gun and fired at Frank. The first shot hit Frank in the stomach.  Frank began to stagger away and Pettis fired again. This time Frank fell to the ground. One of the witnesses asked why Pettis had done that and Pettis said "He has scandalized my family and keeps at it." Pettis then turned and walked home. Both witnesses say Frank did not do anything with his hands, he left them on the grubbing hoe he had been using.  A third witness said differently, that Frank had moved his hands behind his back as if grabbing a gun.  Frank seemed to of died on the scene.  Stay tuned to read more of this story.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

A Fine Day in March of 1902

Hey all!

So I thought it was time to give you a little more background on the people in the pictures.  Martha Ellen Duncan Baccus is the older lady second from the left.  She was born on 13 November 1876, probably in Kentucky.  Her parents names were William Francis Marion and Sarah Christman.  She was married to Frank "B.J" Baccus on the 31 of January 1893.  During the next 9 years they will have 4 children together.  Lillie Lou, Pearl Francis, Roy, and Carl Benjamin. They owned some farmland in Merkle, Taylor, Texas that Frank farmed.  Martha and Frank seemed to of lived happily together those nine years, until the 31st of March of 1902.  The following story is found in The Texas criminal reports: cases argued and adjudged in The Court of Criminal Appeals of the State of Texas vol 47, reported by Rudolph Kleberg, published by T. H Flood and Company: Chicago, Illinios, 190, pages 69-78.  Frank was out building a fence with Buck Moore.  Frank and Buck were working their way down the line towards a wagon and three men were also building a fence around different property.  One of the men named G.R. Pettis began watching Frank and Buck once they were about 100 yards away.  He stood and watched until Frank was about 30 yards away and then said to him...