The incident in which these officers were killed occurred on the Navajo Reservation near Goulding, Utah roughly about 30-40 miles due west of the Four Corners point. The Navajo Nation meets at the corners of these four states: Arizona, New Mexico, Utah and Colorado and includes land in the first three states. It is the largest reservation in the United States, amounting to just under 28,000 square miles.
(Image credit: Findagrave)
On August 6, 1973, United Press carried an article out of Albuquerque, New Mexico reporting the death of Charles Winstead, a former FBI agent. The column may have gone almost unnoticed nationwide, since Mr. Winstead had been retired from the Agency for such a long time. He died at the age of 82 at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Albuquerque.
Samuel Horrell, Sr. had married Elizabeth Wells in 1838. The couple had at least seven children born from about 1839 to 1856, six sons (Sam, John, Martin, Thomas, Merritt and Ben) and one daughter (Sarah). The family had resided in Lampasas County, Texas before heading west in the late 1860s. They intended to go to all the way to California, but were reportedly ambushed by the Apache in San Augustine Pass, Doña Ana County, New Mexico in January, 1969. The father Sam and the son John were killed. After a few weeks, Elizabeth and the surviving six children then returned to Lampasas County for a several years.
On Tuesday, May 9, 1961, the UPI headline read “Jicarilla Law Officer Dies In Gun Fight.” The article went on to relate that a wounded man had checked into the hospital at Española and had subsequently been arrested by New Mexico State Police for questioning in connection with the murder of a tribal police officer.
The Lincoln County War was an armed conflict between two groups of people who were fighting over control of land and business. The fighting and killing generally took place in and around Lincoln County, as it was configured in 1878. The County was much larger back then. Its area approximately included the entire southeastern section of what is now the state of New Mexico. It is important to remember this, since some of the individuals involved would no longer reside in Lincoln County as it is configured today.
by Brian Norwood
Some little known history from the southeast corner concerning one of Jal’s most colorful characters–Richard Emerald “Two-Gun Dick” Herwig.
Sheriff Pat Garrett is best known for having killed the outlaw Billy the Kid in Fort Sumner, New Mexico on July 14, 1881. Garrett was born in Alabama in 1850 and moved with his family to Louisiana where they owned a plantation. The family suffered financial reverses during the Civil War followed by the death of his father a few years after the war’s end.
Elfego Baca was born in Socorro, New Mexico on February 10, 1865 to Francisco and Juana Maria Baca and became a legendary lawman in New Mexico. He was small in stature, being only 5’7″ in height but was the main character in the story of an 1884 shootout where one individual faced seemingly overwhelming odds but stood strongly against them. The son of a marshall in Belen, the first we know of Baca serving as a lawman was in 1884 when he was a deputy sheriff in the Socorro area.