Outlaws are escorted, confessions questioned
by Ed Cook, Contributing Writer
J.L. Jelm was on the down coach yesterday "escorting" two outlaws who had been arrested on Sept. 27, just one day after the Canyon Springs' robbery. They were John H. Brown and Charles Henry Borris, both are now safely in custody in Cheyenne.
Brown, who had been under suspicion, had gone to work for the stage line "for a purpose," he had been furnishing his outlaw friends with information on gold shipments. He was arrested at Canyon Springs and it had first been reported that he had confessed to being implicated in the robbery there on the 26th. He now swears that he was involved only in the one in Whoop Up Canyon on July 2, when passenger Finn had been shot.
Borris, alias Charles Henry, is an escapee from the Wyoming Territorial prison in Laramie City. he was serving time after being convicted of stealing government stock. It is said that he was forced to confess that he had taken part in the big holdup at Canyon Springs. Now he denies that he had been at Canyon Springs. However, he readily acknowledges that he did assist in two other stage robberies, including the one at Whoop Up Canyon.
Borris also says that he was with the party of five men who robbed W.H. Noble's camp on Lander Creek near Atlantic City on about Sept. 8. There the gang had stolen 14 horses, and all the provisions in camp, including guns, ammunition, three new saddles, blankets, spurs and the like. The outlaws tied up all the men in the camp and then stayed there the rest of the day. The gang talked freely of ranchers along the Green and Sweetwater rivers and seemed to be well posted in matters about Wyoming, Utah, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, New Mexico and Texas.
At the time of the Canyon Springs robbery, Borris claimed to have been in Deadwood where he had gone to sell some gold dust and some of the horses from the Noble camp. While there, he failed to get over a spree in time to join his comrades at Canyon Springs. Meeting the others after the robbery, he said he "came near being killed by them on suspicion that I have been 'blowing on' them."
(Information sources: "Robbery of the Bandit Proof Safe," by Joe Koller, Real West, Vol. VIII No. 42; "The Cheyenne and Black Hills Stage and Express Routes," by Agnes Wright Spring.)