The Texas in the Civil War Message Board

Re: Bushwacker Bill Wilson's Death

Here is the information about the Deems from the "Bushwacker" book. Hopefully, this will help.
Mike

"While Bill was getting ready for another escapade, he decided to pay his half-brother, Tine Allen, a visit. Late one evening, Bill arrived at the home of his half-brother, near Little Piney River. He told Tine about the crime that he had committed a few weeks before, and Tine became a bit uneasy, for he was afraid that the soldiers would drag him into his mass murder. Tine Allen was not an outlaw, but a law abiding citizen. Tine invited Bill to stay the night. Early the next morning, while the two men were still inside the house, the soldiers rode up, plenty of them. They were not taking any chances. They quickly surrounded the house, and an officer yelled for them to come out. Bill’s quick thinking probably saved his life. He quickly turned to Tine, saying, “We’re caught, Tine, les give up.” The two men stepped from the house, with their hands above their heads, and the sly Bushwacker said,” Good mornin’ boys. A fine mornin’ ain’t it?”

With that, an officer asked whether or not he was Bill Wilson. Bill smiled as though nothing was wrong and replied, “I reckon so.”

Then the two men were searched for weapons, and were ordered to mount their horses and go with the soldiers. Soon they were on their way. As they rode along the rocky road, Bill was talking to the soldiers, and so clever was he that while passing by some limbs of a tree he broke off one to use on his horse when the opportunity came. But the soldiers were unaware of his scheme. They rode to the home of a man by the name of Deem. This place is just about a half mile north of Corn Creek. Old man Deem’s son, Jim Deem, was a Bushwacker also. While they were standing around the house, all the men were on their horses, except two or three of the soldiers, who dismounted and set fire to the house. But the keen eyes of Bill Wilson were alert, watching his chance for a break. He knew they would kill him once he was at headquarters.

Suddenly he turned, and like a streak of lightening rode up a steep hill from the burning house. Bullets buzzed by him by the dozens. But his well-trained horse soon left then far behind. He received a bullet hole in his black hat, but he never was hit by the many shots that were fired at him. The mare that he rode in this famous escape became lame. She was never of any use to Bill afterwards. Her name was “Dime” because she had a small white spot in the center of her forehead. Bill turned her loose in the woods, and she was seen many times along Corn Creek since. The soldiers took Tine Allen to Waynesville, Missouri. There he was put on trial, but he was innocent of any crime. He was locked up in prison there for a few weeks and finally set free."

"Long after the soldiers had burned Old Man’s Deem’ home, his wife was living in a two-room log house near Corn Creek. Jim Deem was causing the soldiers a lot of trouble, and they were on the lookout for him. One day Jim ventured to his mother’s home for a few minutes, where he received a letter. He then mounted his horse and rode up the hollow from the house a short distance. He dismounted, keeping one foot in the saddle stirrup. While he was reading his letter, a group of soldiers dashed towards him. His horse became frightened and started to run. Jim could never remount. He quickly drew his weapons, but the soldiers had mowed him down before he could use them.

The soldiers learned of his father’s hideout and was soon off toward the Hoffman Cave, where the old man was hiding. He was an innocent man, but because of his son’s deeds, the soldiers decided to kill him also. Soon they arrived at the cave. The old man could not be found until they proceeded to explore the cave. Then Mr. Deem was found and taken from the cave to a spot near the old trail about a half-mile down Corn Creek and killed him.

A few days later, after Bill had been hiding for awhile, real early one morning the dangerous Bushwacker arose from his bed, cooked and ate a hearty breakfast, then decided to proceed up Corn Creek. He quickly saddled his horse, mounted, and soon was on his way. This horse, a well-trained one, was named, “Bullet.” The reason for this name was because of its great speed.

The weather was bitter cold and the heavy clouds hung low. The trees had shed their leaves, and Bill could see a long distance between them. As he rode slowly up the old trail, he could hear nothing but the clatter of “Bullet’s” hoofs on the frozen ground. He stopped suddenly to try and hear a sound from some other source, then he decided to continue his journey. When he came within sight of a small opening near the trail, “Bullet” began to snort. Quickly Bill drew both guns and fired. Two large timber wolves lay dead upon the frozen ground. He dismounted and walked over to where the wolves lay. Then, with much surprise, he noticed blood on them which came from some other source other than the shots he fired. He began to look around, and on passing an old stump, he discovered the body of an old friend. This friend was old man Deem. He was partially devoured by the wolves.

The angered mountaineer mounted his horse, and rode to the dead man’s home, a very short distance away. Upon his arrival, Bill saw the deploring mood of Mrs. Deem, as she ran for the house excitingly, and told him that the soldiers had killed her husband.

“Yea, “ said Bill calmly, “I seen’em down yonder by the trail, and somebody’ll pay fer that.”

The old lady became terror-striken, because she was afraid the soldiers would find Bill on her premises. She then told him that the soldiers would be there that very day.

“Fine,” he replied, “I’ll wait fer ‘em.”

She tried to persuade him to leave, but he insisted on waiting for the return of the soldiers. He dismounted and led his horse into a small stock shed. There he waited patiently for the enemy to come in sight. His guns were loaded and examined carefully in the meantime.

Along toward mid-morning, he began to hear the clank of horses’ hoofs on the frozen ground coming down the trail closer to the shed. The Bushwacker was ready for them. He was slick shaved, but still wore his black mustache. He was in sort of a disguise on this occasion, for he had been wearing a beard. Soon the soldiers appeared at the home of Mrs. Deem. He stepped from the little shed, leading his horse, and kept his keen, penetrating eyes trained on the soldiers. They saw him and came in a trot to where the desperate outlaw was. One of the soldiers at once asked him if he had seen Bill Wilson. At that instant, he mounted his horse drawing his two deadly weapons.

He quickly relied, “Yea, I seen ‘em. This ‘er is ‘im ye’re talkin’ to.” And his guns blazed with fire. Two men reeled from their saddles, dead. His two guns roared once more, before the enemy could draw their weapons, and all four of them lay dead outside the small shed.

He went to the house, and asked Mrs. Deem if there were any more of them. She told him that was all of them, and asked the Bushwacker to remove the bodies from her premises, which he did. He took them a long distance to protect Mrs. Deem from further trouble, and left them in an isolated spot where he knew the wolves would find them. He then disappeared to one of his unknown hideouts."

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