Oh, Martha, you have hit on something very interesting to me - the relationship of the Baylor brothers to H. A. Hamner. The three men - John R. Baylor, George W. Baylor, and Harris A. Hamner, were not only ardent secessionists and racists, they were serial murderers.
George W. Baylor was arrested in San Francisco in 1856 in connection with the murder of 3 men by a vigilance committee. By 1859 he was acquited and came back to Texas, staying on brother John's ranch. On the 1860 US Census, G. W. Baylor listed his occupation as "Indian killer". Soon he joined up with Hamner and his brother in a series of raids and murders of defenseless reservation Indians in Texas. John Baylor was dismissed from his post as Indian agent as a result of these activities, but neither Hamner nor George W. Baylor were prosecuted, as they had the support of large cattlemen who wanted that Indian land.
At the beginning of the Civil War, Hamner, a leading KGC operative, attempted to murder 3 men who he had taken out for drinks in a saloon, because he suspected they were Union sympathizers. He succeeded in killing one of them, but because he was a Captain in the Confederate army, he was not prosecuted. Hamner had such men as Ben Thompson, the gunfighter, in his command (Hamner had to disarm Thompson after Thompson shot his sergeant). In 1861 George W. Baylor joined Hamner's company of the Second Mounted Calvary, a known KGC unit. G. W. Baylor bragged that he had been the first to hoist a secession flag in the State of Texas. Under the command of John R. Baylor, they invaded New Mexico with the intent of capturing Arizona.
After installing himself as Confederate Governor of Arizona, J. R. Baylor's behavior became more bizarre, with "The Governor" sending a letter to a Texas newspaper advocating the poisoning of the water supply of various Native American tribes. As the Texas Confederacy was somewhat dependant on the cooperation of certain Indian tribes, John Baylor lost some support among the Confederate command.
H. A. Hamner was such a jerk that he also fell out of favor, and eventually became a tax collector for the CSA, becoming involved in several more murders of Texas citizens. Soon he was out of that job, and became part of a company of "heel flies" that marched around the interior of Texas, avoiding combat waiting for the end of the war. During this time several of Baylor's companies were stationed around Bonham, Texas.
At war's end Hamner slipped into Mexico rather than surrender, as did many KGC. Hamner then reappeared in the California desert, where he attempted ranching for a time before committing suicide.
George W. Baylor attempted to build up a cotton brokerage business in 1867, during which he maintained contact with other former KGC, as I documented in my book, "Curly Bill" on page 95, sometimes including KGC symbolism in his letters. The cotton business wasn't as easy as it had been when slaves did most of the work, so eventually George Baylor decided he wanted to kill more Indians. In 1868 his brother John R. Baylor shot and killed a defenseless, 60-year old Frenchman, but was released on $1000 bail.
George Baylor secured an appointment to the command of the Texas Rangers Frontier organization through his friendship with Texas Governor Oren M. Roberts, one of the highest-ranking KGC in the State. Roberts had been the Chair of the Texas Seccession Convention, which had organized the Committee For Public Safety, removed the popularly elected Governor Sam Houston from office, and paved the way for Texas to leave the Union. G. W. Baylor spent most of his time with the Texas Rangers chasing Victorio rather than chasing outlaws like Curly Bill.
http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/eew11 WHITE MAN. The White Man (Whiteman), a weekly newspaper devoted to the removal of Indians from the North Texas area, published its first... more
George W. Baylor, white supremacist Randolph W. Farmer,Tue Jan 22 18:06
think was the head of the Vigilance Committee (Tin Hat Brigade, Old Law Mob) at Ft. Griffin. I can't give you a source at the moment, but Larn's brother-in-law, J.A. "Bud" Matthews was alleged to... more
I had seen the OLB letter some time ago...the Captain mentioned in the letter was H. A. Hamner, who had gone to see Governor Houston in Austin to raise a company of Rangers. Houston later rescinded... more
As for the Tin Hats, that was just a nickname the locals had come up with for the KGC, or what had started as a Home Council of the KGC in that region. John Selman was arrested in connection with the ... more
families in Shackelford County paid the Governor of Texas about $50,000 to $80,000 to not prosecute the Ft. Griffin Vigilantes? This is going to bug me until I remember. My Great Grandfather lived in ... more
After the Brazos Indian Reservation was shut down and given over to open range grazing, R. S. Neighbors safely escorted the peaceful Indians to their new homes across the Red River in IT. On the way... more