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Hawkins, Hall, and Goodman

Utah Historical Quarterly

Vol. XV, 1947, Nos. 1-4


Three other members of the Powell 1869 expedition who have not yet been given attention are William R. Hawkins, Andrew Hall and Frank Goodman.

William Rhodes Hawkins was one of the mountaineers Major Powell met at Jack Sumner's outfitting shack in 1868. Hawkins at that time traveled under the name of Billy Rhodes, or, more formally, William H. Rhodes. His nicknames were numerous and at times he was known simply as "Missouri," a clue which proved of great value in trying to trace his origins and early life. William Rhodes Hawkins was born in Missouri in 1841 and first came to public record on June 20, 1863, when he enlisted at Booneville, Missouri, for service in the Union Army. He brought with him a good horse valued at $120.00 and all subsequent muster rolls state that remuneration was due him for his horse and equipment which he used during his service as a private, Company I, 9th Regiment, Missouri State Militia Cavalry. The company muster roll for November and December, 1863, dated at Macon City, Missouri, gives record that Hawkins was absent under civilian arrest. It is perhaps just as well that no additional facts are included. By January, 1864, he had returned to his company, and was ultimately discharged for disability May 29, 1865. The nature of the disability is not recorded. During the war, the company had been in numerous skirmishes and had been on the march constantly. Hawkins was mustered out at St. Louis, Missouri, May 29, 1865.

Sometime between 1863 and 1865, therefore, Hawkins had at least one brush with the law. He was suspected by the members of Powell's 1868 party to be a fugitive from justice. He was uneasy at the approach of a sheriff and otherwise acted suspiciously. Whatever the offense, trifling or serious, Hawkins served Major Powell loyally, not only in Colorado, but in the first exploration down the Colorado River.

Subsequently, Hawkins took up farming and ranching near Eden in Graham County, Arizona, became a respected citizen of the community, and served honorably as a Justice of the Peace. He raised a large family, many of whom still reside in the southwest. Hawkins died June 21, 1919.

Although Billy Hawkins did not keep a diary of his experiences, many years after the exploration he prepared two accounts of his part in the Colorado expedition. In these he was highly critical of the leadership and character of Major Powell. The first of these, prepared for Robert Brewster Stanton in 1907, contains several serious condemnations, but the one published in 1920, shortly after his death, is even more critical of his former chief. Inasmuch as neither of these accounts has much standing as source material, having been written nearly fifty years after the time of the expedition, neither is here printed. There is, undoubtedly, a considerable measure of truth in some of the things he has to say: however, it is not possible to disentangle the errors of fact and colored opinion after such a long period. Previous mention has been made of the correspondence between Hawkins, Sumner, and Stanton.

William Rhodes Hawkins As he appeared in 1909 at the age of 68

William Rhodes Hawkins As he appeared in 1909 at the age of 68

Reproduced from Colorado River Controversies (1932) by courtesy of Dodd, Mead & Company

Andrew Hall, known as "Andy" to the members of the 1869 party, was, in the Major's words, "The Character" of the party. Although but 18 years of age, he had already spent five years on the loose in the plains as a bullwhacker, mule driver, and Indian scout. He had engaged in numerous Indian skirmishes and had raised hell wherever he found it. Little is known of his ancestry or background. He was Scotch, and one vague record suggests that his parents lived in Pennsylvania, yet Major Powell says of him, "without known family ties." He seems to have had some knowledge of English literature. It was Andy who suggested the name "Lodore" after the poem by Robert Southey, and on several occasions Powell makes direct references to the young fellow's pertinent comments and objectives. The Major first met Andy, a skilled boatman, resting upon the oars of a home-made craft of nondescript design. He engaged the lad on the spot. On many occasions it was Andy's good humor that enlivened the monotonous and gradually vanishing fare until starvation faced the whole party. Andy Hall and Billy Hawkins were the only two members of the party whoi continued to tidewater after the passage through the canyons. Shortly thereafter Hall went back to his original vocation as a mule driver.

A few years later he was guarding the stage between Phoenix and Tucson, Arizona. On August 20, 1882, Andy was riding with rifle across his lap, on the driver's seat of the stage near Globe, Arizona, when robbers fired upon him, stopped the stage and got away with $5,000 in gold. Hall fell by the side of the road, and the three highwaymen, believing him to be mortally wounded, took his gun and left him to die. He was not dead, and though in anguish, he managed to get to his feet and follow the killers, trailing them for a considerable distance when they again espied him. This time they made sure of their work, and murdered him with five bullets. A few days later the three desperadoes were hung with suitable ceremony on a large sycamore tree on Main Street near Pinal Creek, at Globe, Arizona.

Frank Goodman was a young Englishman who had been wandering about the United States for adventure. He had some means and was even willing to pay Major Powell if he could join the expedition at Green River Station. Goodman had no particular skill or training which would have suited him for the work. He came along for the adventure and proved to be a rather useless member of the party. He rode in the boat with the Howland brothers and when the "No Name" was wrecked and the men lost their personal belongings, Goodman, who had nearly drowned in the accident, had had enough. His parting, though a disappointment, was not entirely lamented by the others. Sumner says caustically, "Goodman, being fonder of bullwhacking than rowing, left us." The dates of Goodman's birth and death are not known, and his experiences, subsequent to his part in the expedition, have not been traceable.


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