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The Freebooters of the Wilderness   By: (1871-1936)

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First Page:

WILDERNESS

E text prepared by Al Haines

THE FREEBOOTERS OF THE WILDERNESS

by

AGNES C. LAUT

Author of "The Conquest of the Great Northwest," "Lords of the North," etc.

New York Moffat, Yard and Company 1913 Copyright, 1910, by Moffat, Yard and Company New York Published September, 1910 Second Printing, October, 1910

CONTENTS

PART I

CHAPTER

I TO STRADDLE OR FIGHT II AN INTERLUDE THAT CAME UNANNOUNCED III THE CHALLENGE TO A LOSING FIGHT IV STACKING THE CARDS V THE CHOICE THAT COMES TO ALL MEN VI WHEREIN ONE PLAYS AN UNCONSCIOUS PART VII WHILE LAW MARKS TIME, CRIME SCORES VIII A VICTIM OF LAW'S DELAY IX EIGHT INTO MIGHT X THE HANDY MAN GETS BUSY XI SETTING OUT ON THE LONG TRAIL XII THE MAJESTY OF THE LAW VEILS ITSELF XIII THE MAN ON THE JOB XIV ON THE GAME TRAIL XV THE DESERT XVI BITTER WATERS XVII WHERE THE TRACKS ALL POINT ONE WAY

PART II

XVIII WITHOUT MALICE XIX BALLOTS TOR BULLETS XX A FAITH WORKABLE FOR MEN ON THE JOB XXI THE HAPPY AND TRIUMPHANT HOME COMING XXII A DOWNY LIPPED YOUTH IN GRAY FLANNELS XXIII IT AIN'T THE TRUTH I'M TELLIN' YOU: IT'S ONLY WHAT I'VE HEERD XXIV I AM UNCLE SAM XXV THE QUESTION IS WHICH UNCLE SAM? XXVI THE AWAKENING XXVII THE AWAKENING CONTINUED XXVIII THE UNITED STATES OF THE WORLD

FOREWORD

I have been asked how much of this tale of modern freebooters is true? In exactly which States have such episodes occurred? Have vast herds of sheep been run over battlements? Have animals been bludgeoned to death; have men been burned alive; have the criminals not only gone unpunished but been protected by the law makers? Have sheriffs "hidden under the bed" and "handy men" bluffed the press? Have vast domains of timber lands been stolen in blocks of thousands and hundreds of thousands of acres through "dummy" entrymen? Have the federal law officers been shot to death above stolen coal mines? Have Reclamation Engineers, and Land Office field men, and Forest Rangers undergone such hardships in Desert and Mountain, as portrayed here? Have they not only undergone the hardship, but been crucified by the Government which they served for carrying out the laws of that Government? In a word, are latter day freebooters of our Western Wilderness playing the same game in the great transmontane domain as the old time pirates played on the high seas? Is this a true story of "the Man on the Job" and "the Man on the Firing Line" and "the Man Higher Up" and the Looters?

I answer first that I am not writing of twenty years ago, or yesterday, or the day before yesterday, but to day , the Year of our Lord 1909 1910 in the most highly civilized country the world has ever known; in a country where self government has reached a perfection of prosperity and power not dreamed by poet or prophet. The menace to self government from such national influences at work need not be described. The triumph of such factors in national life means the wresting of self government from the people into the hands of the few, a repetition of the struggle between the Robber Barons of the Middle Ages and the Commoners.

It seems almost incredible that such lawlessness and outrage and chicanery can exist in America many of the outrages would disgrace Russia or Turkey yet every episode related here has ten prototypes in Life, in Fact; not of twenty years ago, or yesterday, or the day before yesterday, but to day . For instance, the number of sheep destroyed is given as fifteen thousand. The number destroyed in two counties which I had in mind when I wrote that chapter, by actual tally of the Stock Association for the past six years, is sixty thousand. Last year alone, five thousand in one State suffered every form of hideous mutilation backs broken, entrails torn out; fifteen hundred in an adjoining State had their throats cut; three men were burned to death; one herder in a still more Northern State was riddled to death with bullets... Continue reading book >>




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