The following is the section of the Voices
of the Wind People script dealing with this confrontation:
Hays: "But things was pretty
tense between the Kaw and us folks in ‘59 cus of a squabble
that took place right here at this very spot. It seems that the
Kaw had stolen a couple of horses from a Mexican trader. Well
now, when we folks got wind of it, we weren’t about to stand
for no thieven’ Injuns a hurtin’ our Santa Fe Road traders.
It was important to us to keep in the good graces of them
folks, as it was to our commercial advantage and all. So we sent
word out to the Kaw to bring in the stolen horses and turn over
the warriors who’d done the deed.
Well, one morning in early June they
brought’ em in all right...
One hundred mounted Kaw warriors in full
battle regalia rode down Main Street from the west and pulled up
in front of my store. Allegawaho was their leader. You can
imagine how terrified the townspeople were. A good many women
and children scurried on up to the Kaw Mission for protection. I
was a standin’ out in front of the store along with my clerks
and a few of the local fellas, a facin’ the Injuns. Tom
Huffaker was brought in to do the interpretin’ and ol’ ‘Wa-ho’
commenced to speak his mind."
Allegawaho: "I told Hays
that we now return the stolen horses, but we do not bring the
warriors who took them. These warriors think that taking the
horses of the Mexicans is no different from taking the horses
of the Pawnee. They have done no wrong, but since the Kon-zay
want to trouble with the whites, we have brought the horses to
you. But do not ask for the warriors who took them."
Hays: "It sounded to me like
‘Wa-ho’ was puffin’ hisself up and was almost down right
insultin’. Now I’d been tradin’ with the Kaw for over a
decade, and I knew the only way to handle these rascals was to
let’ em know that we meant biziness. When ‘Wa-ho’ said he
wasn’t about to turn over his thieven’ braves, I thought it
was time to let ‘em know we warn’t just a bluffin’. So I
told my clerk to go get my pistols. I shot ‘em straight up in
the air. Well now, all hell did break loose at this point."
Allegawaho: "Hays did not
listen. Instead he responded with contempt. Then he shot the
guns. Understand, there were many warriors in the street. Those
behind could not see, so when they heard the shots, they thought
that the whites were shooting us, and so two braves each shot a
white. Then we left, riding to the hills to the south. We now
prepared to battle the whites, who we knew would be very angry.
Hays: "Well, danged if the
Injuns didn’t shoot a couple of us, wounded a feller named
Parks and a clerk a’ mine named Gilkey. Truth was, once I
fired my pistols, and the commotion started, I ran into my store
and barricaded the door. Course, I didn’t know poor Gilkey was
still out front left practically alone to face the Redskins.
Well, now folks got to thinkin’ that the Injuns were gonna up
an’ massacre the whole lot of us.
So we sent messengers out to the
countryside and before long the whole town started fillin’ up
with armed men ready to wage all out war against the Kaw. We
counciled; some wanted to attack right then and there and others
to parley with the Injuns first. There were several hundred of
us in town by afternoon, and some showed sign of lustin’ for
Finally, we sent out a delegation to the
Kaw sayin’ either they turned over the perpertratin braves or
we’d exterminate the whole lot of ‘em."
Allegawaho: "At first we
rejected the whites’ demands to turn over the two braves. But
we could see that the whites were growing stronger and better
armed with each passing moment and that many of them would like
to get us permanently out of their way by killing all of us.
Hear me, the Kon-zay are no fools when estimating the
ruthlessness of armed whites. So we bound over the two young
braves, one was the son of a chief. This we did with great
sorrow and regret, but we must save the lives of as many of our
people as we could."
Hays: "We brought the two
Injuns into town. Then a crowd gathered around ‘em and there
war some moments of confusion and doubt as to what was to be
done. Then someone called out "hang ‘em," so we did
the stretchin’ right then and there on the north side of Main
Street. Left them there til’ the next evening, when the bodies
were cut down, loaded onto a wagon, hauled out to one of the
villages, and dumped out onto the ground. And that was the end
of the process of justice, frontier style.
Allegawaho: "Now, hear me,
when a Kon-zay dies, his soul returns to a spirit-village
located where the Kon-zay lived before. And so, the spirits of
our two young warriors returned to I’ve in the villages near
the big river white men call the "Kaw." So it will be
that one day, long after the white men have moved us from this
beautiful Neosho Valley, as they will surely do, spirit hosts of
Kon-zay dead will swarm in this valley, and white men, without
realizing it, will never truly be alone here.