Deadlands: Riders on the Storm

Pre-Trial Mayhem! Defendant Assassinated, Deputy Killed

August 20, 1876

The Paiute Springs Sentinel

Sunday Edition

August 20, 1876
"Ever Vigilant, A Beacon of Truth!"
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Pre-Trial Mayhem! Defendant Assassinated, Deputy Killed

by Oliver Milhouse

On Wednesday, August 16th, Judge Bradford Perryman returned after riding circuit throughout the county. He arranged to hear the trial of one Dr. Barnabas Henley, perpetrator of the "camp reaper" hoax (reported thoroughly in this journal). Judge Perryman arrived around 10 o'clock that morning and set the trial to begin at noon.

That morning, around 11:45 a.m., Dr. Henley, the defendant, was to be escorted to the Town Hall from the jail across the street. However, eagle-eyed citizen Miss Geraldine Keeler warned the Town Marshal that she spotted what she thought was a gunman on top of the Prince Royal Arms, Paiute Springs' only hotel. Marshal Lila Kimsey then took the prisoner around through the back door of the jail and escorted him the long way around town to the trial. She sent her deputy, Ethan Jennings, to check out the gunman.

When the Marshal and her prisoner made it to the corner of Main Street and Church Street, they were exposed for only about half a minute—but it was half a minute too long for Dr. Henley. A shot rang out from down the street and Dr. Henley was shot in the head, blowing the back of his skull out in a spray of blood and gore. The Marshal she tried to take cover and started running for the Prince Royal.

Meanwhile, Miss Keeler did not remain idle. She ran for the Prince Royal as well. She climbed up on Mercantile building and made to jump across the rooftops to the Prince Royal in pursuit of the gunman. She was, unfortunately, stymied by the height of the Prince Royal and fell into the alley. All of this in a dress and bustle! Truly a sight to behold, friends, and a reminder not to cross the formidable Miss Keeler.

Marshal Kimsey made her way on the ground to the Prince Royal and met the gunman as he ran behind hotel on his way to Swain Street. Lila shot the man in the arm—which seemed to knock the fight out of him, because he fell.

Once the assassin was apprehended, Marshal Kisey and Miss Keeler climbed up to the roof of the Prince Royal to find Deputy Jennings' body. He had apparently been beaten pretty bad by the butt of the assassin's rifle. Doc Fabry indicated that he probably died of internal bleeding.

Without a defendant, the trial was declared moot. Now we might never know who put the mad doctor up to the hoax or if he was working independently. Regardless, the Judge was determined to hear a trial, so he set one for 2:00 o'clock for the assassin.

More to come, friends.

Henley Assassin Tried and Convicted

by Oliver Milhouse

One Jace Chalmers of Pioche, Nevada, was apprehended on Wednesday, August 16th, by force by Town Marshal Lila Kimsey after allegedly assassinating hoax suspect Dr. Barnabas Henley and then beating Deputy Ethan Jennings to death in the course of his getaway.

Chalmers was tried later that afternoon by circuit Judge Bradford Perryman. In the course of the trial, Judge Perryman indicated that leniency may be called for if the man cooperated and testified as to who hired him to kill Henley. The death penalty was in order, but perhaps they could execute the assassin in a more humane way than hanging. Chalmers complied, naming one Conrad Stoles of Pioche as the man who hired him. Judge Perryman then found the assassin guilty of the two murders and sentenced him to hanging, regardless of his earlier remarks.

Chalmers was outraged and tried to rush the Judge's desk, but was restrained by Marshal Kimsey and Lionel Putnam, selected to act as her second, with the loss of her deputy.

Marshal Kimsey assures me that Sheriff Brody Yates in Pioche will be notified and that she will work in cooperation with the Sheriff to secure this Conrad Stoles.

The execution of Chalmers occurred later that afternoon.

Strange Case of a Pocket Watch

by Oliver Milhouse

One Carlton Hayes, late of Atlanta, Georgia, has been apprehended by Town Marshal Lila Kimsey and her posse. He is being held on charges of larceny, with the further complication that he stole from a widow.

According to Mamie McDaniel, our local boarding house proprietor, the man broke into her home and took a pocket watch that belonged to her late husband, Owen. He then vamoosed out town. McDaniel fetched the Marshal, who gathered a posse, and went into the desert in pursuit.

But the story is far more complicated than a simple burglary.

According to Mamie, Hayes had confronted her earlier in the day on August 14th about the watch. Hayes claimed that Owen McDaniel had won the pocket watch off of him in Denver, in 1862. As Owen had passed on, he wanted to reclaim "his" property. The watch—a beautiful timepiece with 13 numbers on the face—was a family heirloom and he wanted it back.

Mamie, indignant, stated that she's sure her Owen won the watch fair-and-square and that it was a dear reminder of her husband that she would not be parting with.

This argument seems to have precipitated the theft.

The posse chased Hayes overnight and finally caught up to him about twenty miles outside of town as he rested himself and his horse. The man apparently put up a fight—and gave Marshal Kimsey a wicked cut across the face—but was eventually subdued and brought to heel in the Town Jail.

Later that afternoon of the 15th, Hayes attempted to escape. He somehow got ahold of the jail keys from across the room, subdued Deputy Ethan Jennings, and made his way outside. Good citizens Miss Geraldine Keeler and Mr. Roland Dupre reapprehended the thief and returned him to the jail. Hayes was then placed in manacles for the remainder of his stay.

Hayes was slated to be tried by Judge Bradford Perryman on Wednesday, August 16th.

Hayes Trial Postponed

by Oliver Milhouse

Judge Bradford Perryman set a trial time for August 16th at 4:00 o'clock for theft suspect, Carlton Hayes of Atlanta, Georgia. Hayes insisted he be allowed to secure legal counsel. Judge Perryman, visibly angry, postponed the trial until his next visit, giving Hayes one week to secure and consult with an attorney.

Hayes was denied bail and continues to be held in the town jail.

Jennings Funeral Well-Attended

by Oliver Milhouse

The funeral for fallen Town Deputy Ethan Jennings on August 19th was a well-attended affair at the Paiute Springs Church, Reverend Timothy Gage, presiding. Hymns were sung by the congregation, followed by a short, but heart-felt eulogy by Marshal Lila Kimsey. Then pallbearers Kimsey, David Allan, Lionel Putnam, Mayor J. P. Jefferson, Doc Fabry, and Eustace Wilhelm guided the casket out to the cemetery and Reverend Gage said a prayer as the casket was lowered into the grave.

Jennings had only been deputy in Paiute Springs for a few weeks. Prior to that, he rode "shotgun" for the Old Barcelona stage line. Nevertheless, he was well-liked in town and will be missed.

Railway Fighting Escalates

—Wire Service

After a relatively quiet summer, fighting between the various railroad concerns has escalated of late. Ever since the Union Blue line secured an exclusive right to run supplies to Fort 51 in Nevada, the other lines (with one notable exception) have begun harrying Union Blue trains as far east as Colorado and as far south as the northern-based line runs.

Former Union General Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, head of Union Blue, has fought a wily guerrilla war against his rivals. He's placed troops on supply trains, sent decoy trains full of troops out ahead of the actual runs, drawing the fire of his rivals.  Fighting was especially heavily west of Denver. Chamberlain also made a dubious alliance with Mina Devlin of the Black River Line, allowing his trains to pass through her territory in peace.

Not standing idle, Dr. Darius Hellstromme with his Wasatch Line began taking the fight to all of his rivals, including Union Blue. His troops had many successes, but became overeager and escalated the fight further by attacking Union Blue trains indiscriminately. The others, operating out of their usual zones, were more cautious. Wasatch become brazen in its attempts to wipe out Union Blue. This culminated in a tragic attack on a passenger train traveling to Virginia City, Nevada. Over 20 civilians were killed as automatons let loose with their Gatlings on the crowded train.

The public outcry was immediate and a U. S. Marshal with a posse were deployed to take the leaders of the Wasatch raid. Hellstromme's troops refused to be taken and the Marshal and his posse all ended up residing in pine boxes.

Then, adding insult to injury, while a Union Blue train was delayed by mechanical issues, and a Denver Pacific train was routed past it, the DP train ran into a Wasatch ambush. The leader of the Wasatch troops failed to require his men to identify the train and simply order them to open fire. The locomotive was destroyed, the train derailed, and the entire contents of the train were raided. This included a good many expensive gadgets from the Smith & Robards company.  

This action brought the Denver Pacific line into the fracas. Sir Clifton Robards ordered retaliation. Signs were posted along the line that trespassers on DP property would be shot. An elite squad of a dozen ornithopters was formed to patrol the passes and attack any troops seen there. They would attack with force and without warning.  While less successful in tree-covered Colorado than in flat and open Iowa, the S&R aerial assault continues.

Then Iron Dragon's Kang ordered his troops to jump into the middle of the conflict—for no apparent reason other than to spread chaos. However, a report by the Tombstone Epitaph alleges that Kang may have lost something of his in these raids and was using the attacks as cover to recover it.

Regardless, the battle in Colorado is now a seven-way disaster. This "battle of the cauldron" may make or break the so-called "Great Rail Wars"—either bringing them to a close or simply seeding more chaos.

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