September 13, 1875 | Ranger Daniel Webster Roberts' Colt Revolver


Nearly 140 years ago, the daily train into the small town of Columbus, Texas was slightly delayed while Luvenia Conway and Daniel Webster Roberts recited their marriage vows. The minister who presided over the “I Dos” had arrived on the train, and the newly married couple departed on it. Luvenia, called Lou by everyone who knew her, was embarking on a grand adventure with her Texas Ranger husband. They traveled 250 miles to the edge of what was then the frontier and set up camp with Company D of the Rangers Frontier Battalion. On the way, they got caught up in the Mason County War—a feud between German and American settlers over cattle rustling—and while Ranger Roberts led a posse in pursuit of a vigilante mob, Lou Roberts got her first taste of life on the frontier.

Rushing out into the yard, we saw two men, bareheaded, with guns in their hands, come toward us at full speed. We rushed into the house, locked the doors, and Mrs. Holmes and I went into her room, which had but one window. To our horror the men rode up to the window. I looked for a place of safety, and the only I could see was the space under the bed, which I pointed out to my hostess. She refused to take shelter. She was looking out for the safety of her husband; I was looking after my own. Mrs. Holmes asked them what they wanted; they replied that they had come to inform Mr. Hester, who was Major Holmes’ guest, that Scott Cooley had killed his brother. Now, I want to say right here that I did not go under the bed, and I hoped that Mrs. Holmes had forgotten my reference to the bed, but she not only remembered it, but told it. And some were unkind enough to say that ‘it was not a very dignified thing for a captain’s wife to do,’ and that ‘a frontier woman would have suited him better for a wife.’ After having lived with the Captain fifty years, I am glad he did not think so.*


*From Luvenia Conway Roberts’ memoir, A Woman’s Reminiscences of Six Years in Camp with the Texas Rangers, 1928.