The old cowboy camp meetings were started by a Presbyterian minister by the name of William Benjamin Bloys. Bloys was born in 1847 in Tennessee. Around the time of the Civil War, his Unionist family moved to Illinois. Bloys was educated there in Salem Academy, after which he graduated in 1879 from Lane Theological Seminary for the purpose of becoming a Presbyterian minister. He was married the same year to Catherine Yeck.
Sheriff Pat Garrett is best known for having killed the outlaw Billy the Kid in Fort Sumner, New Mexico. He was born in Alabama in 1850 and moved with his family to Louisiana where they owned a plantation but their business was destroyed by the Civil War and his father died a few years after the war’s end. Fewer people probably know that when he was younger, he spent some time working as a cowboy in the vicinity of Dallas, Texas. He then went on to work on the LS Ranch out in the Panhandle area (now Oldham and Hartley counties).
(Image credit: Country Music Hall of Fame)
Lefty Frizzell was born in Corsicana, Texas in 1928 to Naaman Orville and Ades D. Cox Frizzell. His father was an oilfield worker who followed the drilling rigs. Lefty was the oldest of eight children and his family moved around as the oil exploration business required. There are several explanations of how he came by the nickname of Lefty. The one seeming told most often (and perhaps a legend) was that his classmates began calling him this after a schoolyard fight. He was called Sonny when he was growing up, but he was left handed, which is possibly also the source of his nickname.
April 15 through April 17 are the calendar days associated with the filing deadline for federal income taxes. In Texas, they are also known for being the days that surround the anniversary of the Texas City Explosion.
Pat Neff was the son of Noah and Isabella Eleanor Shepherd Neff. Noah was the descendant of German immigrants to the United States. Noah came to Texas in 1849, but returned home to Virginia several years later to marry Isabella. After the wedding Noah and Isabella rode in a carriage all the way from Virginia, a trip that took fifty-two days, with the newlyweds traveling six days and resting on Sunday.
Dr. Marion Thomas Jenkins was the anesthesiologist who attended President John F. Kennedy at Parkland Hospital after the President was fatally wounded. He was born in 1917 to Dr. Homer Jenkins, a country doctor, and Mrs. Ella Brooks Keasler Jenkins. His father came from an unusually talented family of seven brothers, six of whom became doctors. “Pepper” was a boyhood nickname that stayed with him throughout his career.