MURDER MOST FOUL

Source: Burnet Bulletin, 30 Mar 1899
Transcribed by JoAnn Myers, 19 May 2004


Body of Jim Powers found in the Colorado

On Wednesday evening of last week (after The bulletin had been printed,) Andy Dorbandt and one of Ex-Sheriff Dorbandt's little sons were fishing in the Colorado near Bluffton, on the Dorbandt ranch. They saw in the water what at first they thought was a dead hog; next that it was some clothing lodged against a big boulder. On closer inspection, they found it was the body of a man tied up in a cotton sack, the legs bent back at the knees, the body in its under clothing, and stuffed inside with it were the poor fellow's coat, hat and shoes, and the whole seemed to have been in the river some days as decay had set in. The boys also noticed buzzards hovering overhead. They notified Chris Dorbandt, who recognized the body as that of young Jim Powers, who, with his father-in-law, "Bud" McGuire had been "keeping bach" together on the ranch in Mr. Dorbandt's employ.

Mr. Dorbandt wrote a note to Sheriff Arbuckle, and the latter with Justice Harrell started to the river, but the Ex-Sheriff, fearing "Bud" McGuire, would escape, arrested and brought him to town, and the Sheriff placed him in jail.

An examination of the cabin revealed blood on the floor, and an effort made to wipe it up. There is little doubt the unfortunate man was murdered while asleep, or at least in bed. He was about 23 years old, and had the character of being honest and industrious. Bud McGuire is a well-known well-digger in Burnet county. We hope he will be able to prove his innocence.

Mr. Maxwell dragged the body of the dead man to the Llano side.

The back of the head had been crushed in as if by an axe.

The Bulletin could report a column of rumors about this terrible affair, but [text missing]... the selection of an intelligent, competent jury to a sensational report, so we resist the temptation.

Another foul blot upon the fair name of old Burnet.

McGuire Murder Trial


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