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    Captain Hughes and Company "D"

    [Texas Rangers]. Two Group Portraits of Captain John R. Hughes and Members of Company "D" with a Hughes Autograph Letter Signed. Following the death of Company "D" commander Captain Frank Jones at the hands of Mexican bandits during the attempted arrest of Jesus and Severino Olguin in June 1893, Sergeant John R. Hughes, a member of the company since 1887, was chosen as his replacement. As the new company commander, Captain Hughes vowed to bring all men involved in the killing of Jones to justice.

    Taken shortly after the capture of one such bandit, circa 1894, Captain Hughes and members of his company are seen in this iconic 9" x 6.75" (sight) photograph, which had once belonged to Hughes himself, standing or sitting near a shackled Mexican prisoner. Hughes (seated in a chair at right) wears a large-brimmed hat and holds in his left hand a lever action Winchester rifle. Six men are standing behind him, all similarly armed (the man standing directly behind Hughes wields a shotgun), and three men sit on the ground in front. Several men in this photograph are identified and include Sergeant Carl Kirchner, Rangers J. W. Saunders and Thalis T. Cook, and U.S. Marshal F. M. McMahon. According to accounts, when Hughes received this very photograph he reprimanded the private seated directly to the left of the prisoner for recklessly exposing his sidearm which is strapped to his right hip.

    In the second photograph, measuring 9.75" x 7.75" (sight), Hughes and ten of his men are seen lying on the ground, propped up by their saddles as their horses linger in the background, circa 1894. An inscription on the photograph, in the negative, places the Rangers "in camp. Near Ysleta, Tex." Hughes is seen reclining on his left arm, fourth from the left. The men are all heavily armed with rifles and revolvers. Each of the men is noted below their respective image, in pencil, upon the backing board and includes Capt. Hughes, Thalis Cook, and Ernest "Diamond Dick" St. Leon.

    Also included is a one page, 8.25" x 11" (sight), John R. Hughes autograph letter signed on Headquarters Co. "D," State Rangers letterhead, Ysleta, November 25, 1896. Writing to his friend, Hy Bowles, Hughes sets the record straight regarding his marital status stating, in part, "I am sorry to say that it is not true. I went to Eddy New Mexico to see Miss Baylor and some young ladies here and at El Paso thought they would have a good joke on me by starting the story that I had went there to get married. They . . . put it in the papers. They carried the joke most too far. Of course it did not bother me much but placed the young lady in an embarrissing [sic] position." Hughes, whose fiance had died years earlier, never married. Folds; chipped edges are toned. Light mat burning near lower edge. Matted and framed to an overall size of 42.5" x 22.25".


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    September, 2013
    21st Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 3
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,549

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