• Texas Cattle Rustler Tells Story Of His Murder Convictions, His Life In Prison, Prison Conditions And Reform

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    Fascinating story of cattle rustler Milt Good, who, along with Tom Ross, were convicted of murdering two inspectors of the Southeastern Texas Cattle Raisers Association.  Offered here is Good’s account as told to W.E. Lockhart, 1935, in an 88-page paperback entitled, “Twelve Years In a Texas Prison, autographed by Good on a printed page with his photograph, after he had been pardoned. [Extensive research on the case is included.]  Good had been sentenced to 50 years, escaped several times and was caught.  But through the efforts of his wife he was released after 12 years.

    Good defends the killings as self-defense.  “I am still convinced that the plea was justified...I took a train to Seagraves. Upon my arrival there I met Tom Ross; and when he learned that I was in the market for steer calves, he insisted on my going to see some of his...I rode out to his ranch and spent Saturday and Sunday there; and Sunday evening he took me to Seminole where the trouble occurred...This shooting occurred about 8:00 p.m. on Sunday night, April 1, 1923. We then drove about ten miles north of Seminole to Sune Birdwell’s ranch and phoned to the sheriff...We returned to Seminole and gave our guns to the sheriff...The circumstances clearly entitled us to bail, but we were never granted the opportunity...We were compelled to spend twenty-two months in jail awaiting trial...The jail was guarded day and night by deputies armed with shot guns and every person was carefully searched before entering the court room...The crowds at the trial were the largest ever seen in Lubbock. The jury was not out long, and brought in a verdict of guilty; giving Tom Ross a sentence of thirty-five years in the penitentiary at Huntsville...” The judge sentenced good to a double sentence, which his attorney protested.


    Good offered suggestions for improving the Texas Prison System. When he entered prison, there was no sewage system. Refuse of thousands was collected in buckets and thrown out. “Prisoners slept on old shuck mattresses with no springs...But now, due mainly to the efforts and good judgment of Lee Simmons, General Manager of the System, there is modern sewage and good steel beds with up-to-date mattresses...”


    Some chipping on covers. Else in very good condition and a fine example of Western and Texas Americana.


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