Texas Day by Day

On this day in Texas history…

Famous former slave dies at the hands of Indians

January 24th, 1871

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On this date in 1871, Britton Johnson was killed by a band of Kiowas who attacked his wagontrain. He had become legendary in the previous decade for pursuing Indians who kidnapped his wife and children. After his adventures on the Llano Estacado, Johnson worked as a teamster hauling goods between Weatherford and Fort Griffin. The evidence of spent cartridges suggests that he defended himself fiercely before dying. He and his men were buried in a common grave beside the road.

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