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Sunday, March 30, 2008

Medicine Crow

Medicine Crow

Little known music group from Ellis County circa 1989-90. Members Andy,Barry,Bryan, Brian, and Charlie all from Ellis County. Main reason is they only put together one Album Stomp'n in the Churchyard. The band tried an experimental folk rock formula. Using banjos, mandolins, casio keyboards,hardwood floors, drum machines,harmonica and the cello along with the standard acoustic guitars(6&12strings,electric guitars (bass 6string). Technology of the time only allowed lo-fi 4 track tape recording. Medicine Crow didn't have the luxury of digital recording.

After Medicine Crow

Andy(guitarist/vocalist/songwriter) also performed at DBU with his friend Russel in a group called Swahili Monkey Brothers. Later graduated from DBU and married having one son they moved to New Mexico. Still involved in church functions and playing his guitar and singing in the fashion of Dylan. The Lord took Andy beyond the stars in the Mid 90's. His wife has continued their dream of being missionaries and with their son teaches in China.

Barry (Guitars,mandolin,vocals,keyboard)went to East Texas State in Commerce with Bryan and Brian. Do to lack of funds dropped out and returned to Ellis County and played with a band called Hung by Vigilantes. Currently Barry manages a business in Ellis County.

Bryan (Drummer,vocals,keyboard)graduated from East Texas State and joined the Airforce. From the University to the Air Force Bryan learned the trade of radio/tv and became a video editor for Nasa. Bryan was responsible for any video released by Nasa on the Hubble Telescope. In Circa 2006 Bryan resigned from Nasa and joined Michelle Malkin at the conservative political hotspot blog He resigned from in March 2008 and was hired to produce the Laura Ingraham show a nationally broadcasted conservative radio show in over 300 radio stations where he is currently employed.

Brian (Vocals,Banjo,harmonica) went from East Texas State to Denton where he obtained his degree in art from North Texas State University. He later worked security for an art museum in Ft. Worth for a stint. He also was involved in the set up of exhibits while at the museum. During this time he was highly involved in his video art. Presenting his art in exhibits all over Texas. Eventually all over the United States and to Europe. Later he got a job moving high end residences that usually involved moving art. Currently employed by a wealthy individual in Dallas to work on a metal project (not his art).

Charlie (Bass,background vocals,tech,mixer) is highly involved in his Waxhachie Bible Church. Always running their website, working on their computers, running their sound board or playing the bass. Over a year now Charlie has fulfilled his life's calling to be a missionary to Equatorial Guinea, Africa. He and his wife Bridget along with their children Briana and Micah(who was in the womb during the album's recording. we feel he may have suffered some damage to the exposure of the music :)) live in the Coastal jungle. His wife a student of Southwest Assemblies of God college has taken her English teaching skills and are working on translating the new testament into the native language, Fang(pronounced like Fawng). Suffering from malaria and separation from the Western comforts they keep moving forward with the good work.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Ellis County Sheriffs and 08 Run-Off

April 8th we will have a Run-Off for Ellis County Sheriff. It will be between James Ledbetter and Johnny Brown. The primary results were Johnny Brown 4,652 James A. Ledbetter 3,812 Steve Mckinney 3,481. It's my understanding that since Johnny Brown did not recieve more than 50% of the vote he must have a run-off with the candidate with the second most votes. The Blog For Ellis County Texas History endorses candidate Johnny Brown. He is a younger candidate with creative ideas and has always voted Republican. Here's his Myspace. Though from what I understand we will be in good hands no matter what candidate wins. Ledbetter according to his Myspace page has ran two prior unsuccessful campaigns for Ellis County Sheriff. One against Sheriff Gage and one against current Sheriff Stewart. If you are a Brown supporter get out and vote April 8th because it appears Mckinney supporters lean towards Ledbetter. That's 3,481 potential votes for Ledbetter. The irony is even though Mckinney lost his voters will decide the winner.

Blog discussions of the April 8th run-off

Newspaper discussions of 08 run-off

Here are Ellis County's past Sheriff's

Ellis County Sheriffs

WILLIAM H. H. BRADFORD: elected August 5, 1850; resigned January 14, 1851.

HARVEY W. YOUNG; appointed February 7, 1851; elected August 2, 1851, and served until December 1852.

JONATHAN E. PRINCE: appointed December 31, 1852; elected August 7, 1854; served until August 4, 1856.

JAMES W. CARTNEY; elected August 4, 1856; resigned February 7, 1858.

JOHN G. WILLIAMS: appointed February 27, 1858; elected August 2, 1854; served until August 6, 1860

ALBERT A. FOSTER: elected August 6, 1860; resigned April 1861.

JOHN KING: appointed April 6, 1861 served until August 4, 1862.

M. B. LANKSFORD: elected August 4, 1862; re-elected August 1, 1864; served until August 31, 1865.

MATTNEW SKEIN: appointed August 31, 1865; served until June 25, 1866.

GEORGE B. SWEATT: elected June 25, 1866; resigned December 1866.

CHARLES FOSTER: appointed December 24, 1866; served until July 1867 when moved out of the county.

PETER W. WILLIAMS: appointed July 3, 1867; served until Sept. 16, 1869 when removed by order of Gen. J. J. Reynolds.

JAMES YARBOROUGH: appointed September 16, 1869 by Gen. Reynolds Special Order; did not qualify.

JOHN T. KING: elected December 3, 1869; served until February 17, 1870; may have been removed by military order.

C. K. GOODWYN: appointed February 17, 1870 by special order Gen. J. J. Reynolds; served until December 2, 1873.

JOHN T. KING: elected December 2, 1873; served until February 15, 1876; moved away for a time but returned and died near Britton.

W. D. "Wash" RYBURN: one of most colorful men elected; served February 15, 1876; re-elected November 5, 1878; November 2, 1880 and served until November 7, 1882; native of Kentucky and a veteran of the Civil War; ran for office again after turn of century, but lost.

JOHN BRALY: elected November 7, 1882; served until November 4, 1884; native of Arkansas and Civil War veteran.

W. P. WATT: elected November 6, 1888; re-elected November 4, 1890; served until November 8. 1892; native of Alabama.

JAMES M. MEREDITH: elected November 8, 1882; served until November 6, 1894; first native of county to hold office; died in Austin.

W. J. McCUE: elected November 6, 1894; re-elected November 3, 1896 and served until November 8, 1898; twice married; no known descendants; died near Henrietta, Texas.

GEORGE C. SWEATT: elected November 8, 1898; re-elected November 6, 1900; served until November 8, 1902.

JOE P. MINNICK: elected November 4, 1902; re-elected November 8, 1904 and served until November 6, 1906; was constable at Palmer prior to term as sheriff.

W. H. FORBES: elected November 6, 1906; re-elected November 3, 1908 and served until November 8, 1910; ran again in 1926 but was defeated by Joe Loe by only five votes.

A. W. WILSON: elected November 8, 1910; re-elected November 5, 1912; served until November 3, 1914.

HENRY DEARBORN: elected November 3, 1914; re-elected November 7, 1916; served until November 5, 1918 native of Missouri; twice married; was superintendent of Odd Fellows Old Folks Home at Ennis at one time.

GEORGE C. SWEATT: again elected November 5, 1918; re-elected November 2, 1920 and served until death February 4, 1921. Sweatt held many offices during his life, as well as his terms as sheriff.

W. H. FORBES: appointed February 26, 1921; elected a second time November 2, 1922 and served until January 1, 1925.

JOE LOE: elected November 4, 1924; re-elected November 2, 1926 and served until January 1, 1929.

JOHN DAVENPORT: elected November 6, 1928; re-elected November 4, 1930 and served' until January 1, 1933; native of Tennessee.

DAVE FEARIS: elected November 8, 1933; re-elected November 6, 1934 and served until January 1, 1937.

J. E. ROY: elected November 3, 1936; re-elected November 8, 1938 and served until January 1, 1941.

JESS L. CARIKER: elected November 5, 1940; re-elected November 3, 1942, November 7, 1944; November 5, 1946 and served until January 1, 1949. Served as president of the Texas Sheriff's Association in 1944.

EDWARD BURL WHITE: elected November 2, 1948; re-elected November 7, 1950; November 4, 1952, November 2, 1954 and served until January 1, 1956.

WAYNE McCOLLUM: elected November 6, 1956; re-elected November 8, 1960, November 3, 1964, November 5, 1968, November 7, 1972 and served until January 1, 1977. His twenty years of service is the longest in County history.

BARNEY BOYD: elected November 2, 1976; re-elected November 4, 1980; and November 6, 1984 and served until January 1, 1989.

JOHN GAGE: elected November 8, 1988; served until ? [was lawman for thirty-three years.]

NOTE: RAY STEWART is the present sheriff of Ellis County (2004).

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Monday, March 3, 2008


I found the grave of Joseph Llewellyn by surfing on the Internet. He died at 5 years old on May 9, 1875. Local Historian Wilma Caddel gave me exact directions to the grave. I had actually passed this spot the week before going off an Internet direction. If you come off Buena Vista(1446) from Waxahachie you take a left on Hoyt. It has a sign at Hoyt and 1446 that points to the Fri-Tex Dairy Farm and Hoyt runs beside the abandoned SSC buildings. The road goes straight to the entry to the Dairy Farm but you take the curve to the left and travel about a half mile. Inside a barbed wire fence on the left not to far from the road is the grave with an iron fence around it and a tree next to it. It is on private property and it looks like they keep it up. It appeared nobody was there so I didn't bother to ask to get inside fence. The location is approximately here.

The story on the internet goes as follows.


Located 6 miles West of I35 on Buena Vista Rd., Right at SSC Lab to Fri-TEX Dairy; .5 miles West of Dairy. Grave is on the left. (There is a story that this grave is that of a child who was riding with his family on a wagon train, and was killed by Indians. The grave is that of Joseph Llewellyn who died May 9, 1875; he was age 5 years 5 months.)

(ECGS Volume 11)

Now, I'm thinking the Joseph's body was carried to this spot maybe at the end of their journey. There were not many skirmishes with Indians in Ellis County, especially by 1875. This fact makes me think the skirmish happened somewhere else on their journey.

Another link is here