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Allred slays Navajo to reclaim stolen horse

(Deseret Evening News, 16 November 1869) 

Horse Stealing.

We have received the following per Deseret Telegraph line:

Beaver, Nov. 16, '69

Ed Deseret News.--On Friday, the 12th inst., Wm. Allred of this place, found that one of his horses had disappeared from the east field. After searching some time he got on the horse's track, leading over the mountains to the Sevier. On Saturday morning he started on foot from Beaver, armed with a double barrelled shot-gun and a revolver, and having with him three days' provisions. He followed the trail, and on Sunday morning, about 8 o'clock, came in sight of his horse, which was grazing in an open space about forty miles from Beaver, on the east side of the mountains, between Circleville and Marysvale. He then took a circuit around, got ahead of the trail and ambushed himself behind some rocks close to the trail, knowing that an Indian had the horse as he had seen his foot prints and camp fires. In a short time the Indian came along mounted on the horse, and when within about twenty or twenty-five yards from Bro. Allred, the latter fired one barrel of his shot-gun, loaded with five revolver bullets which settled the account with Mr. Indian. He was a strange Indian and wore a Navajo blanket. Bro. Allred took his horse with the Indian's saddle and bridle rope and came home, arriving here on Sunday evening at 9 p.m. The Indian had marked his trail all along, and is very likely one of the Navajos that have been raiding South lately.

Another version of what must be the same incident, despite the discrepancy of a year in the recorded date, appears in Peter Gottfredson, History of Indian Depredations in Utah [1919]:

Wm. J. Allred Rcovers His Horses, Kills Two Indians.

William Jackson Allred was the first Bishop of Circleville. When that town was vacated on the 28th of June 1866, he went to Parowan, Iron County, and later in the fall moved his family to Beaver. The next summer he worked a farm on shares at the Buckhorn Springs, south of Beaver, leaving his family at Beaver.

One morning (Nov. 10th, 1868) when he got up, he sent his little boy to look for his horses and as the boy was gone longer than he thought he should, he went to look for him. The boy who had found the tracks of the horses, could see that they had been taken by Indians, and showed his father the tracks. Allred then took with him his five-shot revolver and followed the trail of the thieves all day, going northeast through Cottonwood canyon. Having crossed Buckskin Valley into Hawkins Canyon, he discovered a smoke about a mile distant. He crawled carefully to the place where he saw the smoke and here the three thieves were located in a deep wash sitting by the fire. He stopped to reflect as to what was best to do and seeing one of the Indians with a gun laying by him Allred fired at him, and he fell over; the other two jumped up and ran. He fired at one of them killing him, the other got away. When Brother Allred went down in the hollow where he shot the first Indian he found that the Indian was not dead as he raised up and shot an arow at him; it grazed his face and went up through his hat. Allred then shot the Indian in the head. He recovered his horses, and before leaving the place he dragged the dead Indians together, covered them with brush which he set on fire, and got back in the night.

Copyright 2006 by Ardis E. Parshall

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