• Dennis McCaslin

Tales of the US Marshals: US Marhsal John Zeke - February 14, 1872

About 10:00 p.m. the night of Wednesday, February 14, 1872, Charles Goodard was brought in by the night clerk and night watchman and allowed to sleep off his intoxication in the offices of the Muskogee Railway station.

About an hour later Goodard left. Shortly after that it was discovered the express chest had been unlocked and the $602 in it taken.

Goodard was arrested the next morning and taken to Fort Gibson to be held until he could be taken to Fort Smith for trial.

About 11 p.m. that Thursday night gunshots were heard coming from near the railway station. Deputy Zeke was found to have been shot in the chest.

He was taken to a near by hotel and a doctor sent for. Shortly afterwards the doctor arrived however Deputy Zeke died moments later.

Before he died he stated that he had arrested someone in connection with the theft from the express chest when several teamsters interfered and shot him.

Although a large posse was formed and pursued the assailants, no record has been found indicating if anyone was ever apprehended.

Deputy Zeke was buried February 17th at Fort Gibson.

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