Jim Enos

Virginia Dale Station Hunter

A short distance to the south of the Virginia Dale Stage Station, a small cemetary lies on the hillside, embracing at least three graves. One is that of Jim Enos, the station hunter. For a long time, Jim had been a great favorite with all the stage boys. He was noted for his hunting and trapping skills, and was kept busy in supplying the station with fresh game, hunting for a distance of about 75 miles, mostly from Virginia Dale west to Cooper Creek. The stage passengers and employees enjoyed many a good venison steak and roast brought down by Jim.

On the morning of June 29, 1865, while out to the north and west of Virginia Dale with the division agent Robert Spotswood and Albert Huston, Enos' hunting partner, the caravan of coaches, mail and passengers came under attack. The fight lasted all day and it was evening before the Indians drew back. The fight was a bitter one. Two men laid stretched out: Alex Hardy, dead, and Jim Enos, with an Arapaho arrow protruding from his abdomen. He was carried to the Cooper Creek Station. Accompanying the caravan was a surgeon who, unable to pull out the arrow by hand, found it necessary to use a pair of blacksmiths' tongs. The instant the arrow was removed, Jim Enos died. The party carried his body back to Virginia Dale for burial.

The second grave is that of Mrs. Leach, wife of the station owner from 1868 to 1875. It is unclear exactly how many other graves are nearby; at least one, possibly two. The occupants of the other graves are unknown to this day.

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