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A Story Of Massacre ~ Bert Simpson
Posted by: Deborah Brownfield - Stanley (ID *****1616) Date: October 21, 2004 at 11:30:30
  of 111

The Chariton Leader, Chariton, Iowa
Thursday, June 21, 1906

A short time since when C.R. KIRK returned from Montana he brought with him a relic of Indian hostility in the shape of a human skull. In the posterior of the skull is the point of a steel arrow imbedded in the structure and protruding perhaps an inch into the interior and of almost needle sharpness, the missile of destruction no doubt. On the crown is a gash cut by a tomahawk and a dim stain yet remains about the crown delineating the severance of the scalp. When MR. KIRK was at the BERT SIMPSON ranch near Joliet he saw this skull and was so interested in the narrative that he was presented with it and thus brought it with him on his return home. The narrative is as follows:

About nine years ago MR. SIMPSON was prospecting for mineral in a canyon of what is now a part of Carbon County but then belonged to the Crow reservation. While passing along his eye was attracted by a skeleton lying in his way, perfectly denuded of the flesh. Sights like this were no uncommon occurences then but his eye was attracted by the protruding arrow and he picked up the skull, and the conditions wove a theory of how the unknown white man met his fate. He was undoubtedly a lone prospector and his avenging foe an Indian. From the position in which the skeleton rested the skulking savage must have been concealed, with poised arrow, on shelving embankment, covered with rock and brushwood a few feet to one side, and as the unsuspicious traveler passed by with his back to the ambush the bow was sprung and the arrow penetrated the victim's brain. With a savage yell the Indian leaped forward, broke the arrow shaft off at the base of the skull, whipped out his knife and tore away the scalp even before the quiver of death had released the spirit from the body. Not being satisfied with this he lifted his tomahawk and crashed it into the crown and with heinous glee sped away to his companions dangling this bloody trophy. Tales like this abound which make it hard to reconcile the boasted nobleness of the red man.
* * * * * * * *
BERT SIMPSON is a native of Chariton and went to Montana when it was a wilderness and has had experiences of his own. He says he is fortunate in holding his scalp intact where life's incidents are by no means a continued romance. But he went at the right time. he secured a fine lot of land and it is said he has two of the best ranches in Carbon County. One of them is given over to the culture of sugar beets, for which he has refused $100 per acre. This is not to be wondered at when it is known that he receives for it an annual rental of $10 per acre.


Copied by Nancee(McMurtrey)Seifert
October 20, 2004

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