header
American Detective Fiction    Prior to July 1891

menu
Link to homepage Link to browse page Link to search page Link to advanced search page link to contact us page
  Published in
The New York Ledger, January 4, 1862.

This story was also published in The Richwood [Ohio] Gazette, January 10, 1889.  In this version, the principal character becomes a detective rather than a sheriff. Also, the Gazette credits the story as originally written by Cyrus Tudor for the American Agriculturist.

.
 
The Trained Horse
line
From a Sheriff’s Papers
line
by Sylvanus Cobb, Jr.
line
  What did it mean? The road between the two towns was direct, and not even a byway was there to lead one astray; there was no crook, no fork: so that to wander from the true path was impossible. During the month of July three travelers were missed; and the people turned out in a body to search. Of course attention was directed to the wood, and the search was extended for miles and miles through the heavy timber; but without success.

On the fourth of August a young man, who gave his name at Clayville as Michael Dupont, of New Orleans, left that place for Booneton. He was on horseback, and when he was told of the dangers of the road he only laughed at them. He said he had a good horse and good weapons, and he was not afraid. But Michael Dupont never reached Booneton.

It was on the nineteenth of August that I arrived at Clayville, and put up at the village inn. I was on the track of two rogues who had robbed the bank in Jackson; and I had not been at the inn an hour before I made myself sure that the men I sought had passed that way only three days before. And then I heard . . .

line

Find the full text here.

   
print icon

 

 

    From Clayville to Booneton is about fifteen miles, across a rolling prairie, and the road runs very near east and west. Halfway between the two towns the road is touched by a point of timber, where a heavy growth of pine sweeps away to the northward, into a dark, dense forest. In the spring of 1842 and man left Clayville in the morning, bound for Booneton. His name was registered at the inn as Richard Bizbee, of New York; and he was supposed to have money with him. He left Clayville upon horseback, in fine health and spirits; but he was never seen in Booneton. Perhaps he had, unnoticed, gone part way, and then returned. At all events, he was never heard of more in that section.

About a month after that a man from St. Louis left Booneton for Clayville. He was also on horseback, and started off well and hearty; but he never reported himself at the place of his destination. Within a fortnight after this second disappearance two more travelers were missed.

   

 

 


 

menu
Link to homepage Link to browse page Link to search page Link to advanced search page link to contact us page

All rights reserved. © 2011