Part 8, Note 29
Click Here to See All Notes to Part 8
Lavaca County District Court Records, Criminal Cause File No. 700: State of Texas v. David Snodgrass, et al., Minute Book D, pp. 135, 664, 669, 768, Minute Book E, p. 122. The five defendants were David Snodgrass, Rupert "Ben" Van Wagner, Mac W. Rhodes, William C. Meredith, and William Burton Simpson. Townsend was about eighteen when he was killed. His father, Spencer Burton Townsend, had died before he was ten. After his father's death, he seems to have lived with his uncle, and the man for whom he was apparently named, Stapleton Townsend. In addition to Stafford, Townsend was attended on his deathbed by a Dr. DeGraffenreid. This was certainly one of three brothers, William G. DeGraffenreid, Thomas Tscharner DeGraffenreid, and Fleming Taylor DeGraffenreid, all of whom practiced medicine in the Oakland area at the time. The most likely candidate is Fleming DeGraffenreid who was, like his brother Thomas, married to a close relative of Townsend. He, rather than Thomas, is the more likely because the attending physician did not testify at the trial. Fleming died in 1869, two years before it was held. Thomas lived until 1875, and would certainly have been called to confirm or refute Stafford's testimony if he could (see Seventh Census of the United States (1850) Schedule 1, Lavaca County, Texas; Eighth Census of the United States (1860) Schedule 1, Lavaca County, Texas; DeGraffenreid Family File, Archives of the Nesbitt Memorial Library, Columbus; and Tula Townsend Wyatt, The Seven Townsend Brothers of Texas 1826-1838 (Austin: Aus-Tex Duplicators, 1974), p. 187. The latter work has been used as the source of the date of Spencer Townsend's death. Curiously, it omits mention of the suspected horse thief).