Posts Tagged ‘Wickham’

Gold-Digger Survives Indian Massacre

April 17, 2009

UNITED AFTER MANY YEARS.
Supposed Victim of Indian Massacre Finds His Family.

Lost for forty-eight years and given up for dead as one of the victims of an Indian massacre in 1859, when the other thirty-nine of the party were killed, Alanson X. Lockwood, father of Mrs. I.M. Bennett of 3631 Greenwood avenue, Seattle, has been located in Manton, Cal., and the daughter, now past the half-century mark, left Saturday over the Northern Pacific to meet her father she had supposed to be dead, says a Seattle correspondent of the Winnipeg Journal.

Merest chance has placed the long-separated father and daughter in communication and wrought events in such a manner that the aged father can be brought back to the family long lost to him. His aged wife, who married again after the report of the massacre of her husband, will hasten back to Seattle from Princeton, Ill., where his is now visiting. The second husband, whom she married forty-four years ago, died a few months since, and she will now meet her husband of fifty years ago.

During the gold rush to California in 1859 Mr. Lockwood went from Faribault, Minn., with a party of thirty-nine others to seek his fortune in the gold fields, leaving behind his young wife and daughter of 3 years. By the slow overland route of those days the party reached Boise, Idaho, where they constructed a raft and started down the south fork of the Boise and Snake rivers with the intention of going to Astoria and thence to California.

What became of the party no one ever knew, but the bones and belongings of thirty-nine of them were found bleaching upon the prairies and the report went back to the little Minnesota town that all had been killed by the Indians. Years crept slowly by and the little child became the wife of E. Wickham and the fate of Lockwood passed into the forgot past.

Friends of Mrs. Bennett in the east recently heard of a man by the name of Alanson X. Lockwood, living in California, and the peculiarity of the name aroused their interest. They wrote to Mrs. Bennett and she asked a friend who was going to California to investigate. The result was that after an exchange of letters if was learned beyond all doubt that Mrs. Bennett’s father was still living.

Only meager details of the escape of Mr. Lockwood and his subsequent failure to find his family have been sent to  Mrs. Bennett, but that little reads like a chapter from the strangest romance. When the party was set upon by the Indians after leaving Boise, Mr. Lockwood was struck upon the head and the Indians, believing he was dead, threw his body into the river.

How long he remained in the water he does not know. Eventually he made his escape and after many privations reached Lewiston, Idaho. From there he traveled to Astoria, and in time reached California. Meeting with success he sent for his family. But in the meantime the report of the massacre had reached Faribault, and the widow, believing the story, had moved away. Thus when Mr. Lockwood’s letters came there was no one to claim them and no one knew where Mrs. Lockwood had gone.

Mr. Lockwood remained faithful to the memory of the wife and daughter whom he had left behind. He could never account for their disappearance, and believed them both dead. He read of Indian troubles in Minnesota, and supposed his loved ones perished that way. The reunion of the long separated family will take place in Seattle.

Mountain Democrat (Placerville, California) Jan 25, 1908