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Particulars of the Duel Between Lieutenant Mowry and Mr. E. E. Cross.

[Newspaper account]

TUBAC, Arizona, Saturday, July 9, 1859.

The latest exciting intelligence in this region is an “affair of honor,” which occurred yesterday, between the Hon. SYLVESTER MOWRY, Delegate from Arizona, and E.E. CROSS, Esq., editor of the Arizonian. Mr. MOWRY was the challenging party. The difficulty arose from certain personalities in communications to the Press, which both parties felt called upon to notice. They fought with Burnside rifles, at forty paces. The rencontre took place at 5 P.M., in an open field on the outskirts of Tubac, in the presence of a number of spectators.

Mr. MOWRY’s second was Mr. GEORGE D. MERCER. Capt. JNO. DONALDSON, United States Collector of Customs at Calabasas, acted for Mr. CROSS. The principals took their stations, and the word was given by Mr. GEO. D. MERCER, Lieut. MOWRY’s second. Three shots were exchanged without effect. Upon the fourth round the cap on MOWRY’s rifle did not explode, while CROSS’s ball whistled harmlessly past his antagonist. MOWRY held his rifle still leveled, as an indication that he had not had his shot, and many, not understanding the code, supposed that he designed trying it again. Several grasped their pistols as if to shoot him down, and they were cries of “Hold your fire!” “Don't shoot, MOWRY!” CROSS stood perfectly calm, awaiting the result. Mr. MERCER advanced, when MOWRY lowered his rifle and handed it to his second. They still claimed their shot as a right under the code. Mr. CROSS unhesitatingly expressed his willingness to grant it, but his second demurred. After conferring with several gentlemen familiar with the Code, who agreed with Mr. MOWRY that he was entitled to the shot, Capt. DONALDSON acquiesced, and Mr. CROSS, handing him his rifle, folded his arms, apparently unconcerned, and faced his antagonist.

At this stage of the proceedings the spectators became terribly excited. Many, perhaps a majority, thought it unfair, and some spoke of putting a summary stop to the whole affair, but upon learning that those present supposed to be best acquainted with the duello had declared him entitled to it, they reluctantly fell back. At the word, Mr. MOWRY fired in the air, and declared himself satisfied. CROSS had stood directly facing him, not knowing that he could rely upon his generosity to decline firing upon an unarmed foe, fully expecting death, and yet not a nerve trembled -- not a single evidence of fear was displayed. His antagonist was completely unmanned. Tears sprung into his eyes, and all enmity vanished before such an exhibition.

Mr. MERCER, MOWRY’s second, crossed the field, and taking CROSS by the hand, informed him that Mr. MOWRY was satisfied. They started forward to meet MOWRY, who was advancing, and after shaking hands, they stood for some minutes to receive the congratulations of their friends. Both are good shots, but there was a very strong wind at the time, making good shooting impossible, especially with the weapons chosen. The Burnside rifle weighs but 7 1/2 lbs., is short and not well balanced. The ball is a large slug over one ounce in weight. They will project a ball 1,000 yards, and like all guns ranged for long distances, are not well adapted for close shooting. MOWRY’s first shot grazed his antagonist’s ear, causing an involuntary dodge, just perceptible, and Mr. CROSS’s second shot caused a similar movement on the part of Mr. MOWRY.

All differences have been satisfactorily and amicably settled between them, much to the gratification of the whole community.

The following cards give the exact facts of the case:

A CARD. -- A difficulty having occurred between the Honorable SYLVESTER MOWRY and Mr. EDWARD E. CROSS, Editor of the Arizonian, in reference to certain publications made by both parties, Mr. GEORGE D. MERCER acted as the friend of Mr. MOWRY, and Capt. JOHN DONALDSON as the friend of Mr. CROSS. Mr. MOWRY being the challenging party, no compromise being effected the parties met on the 8th instant, near Tubac, weapons Burnside rifles, distance forty paces; four shots were exchanged without effect; at the last fire Mr. MOWRY’s rifle did not discharge. It was decided he was entitled to his shot and Mr. CROSS stood without arms to receive it. Mr. MOWRY refusing to fire at an unarmed man, discharged his rifle in the air, and declared himself satisfied. The settlement appended, signed by the principals is approved by the undersigned.
TUBAC, Arizona, July 9, 1859.

The following is a copy of a document sent to the Washington States for publication by the two principals:

“Mr. EDWARD E. CROSS withdraws the offensive language used by him, and disclaims any intention to reflect upon Mr. MOWRY’s veracity or upon his reputation as a gentleman, in any publication he has made in reference to Arizona.

Mr. MOWRY, being satisfied from personal explanations that he has done injustice to Mr. CROSS’s character and motives, in his letter to the Press of July 2, takes pleasure in withdrawing the imputations against Mr. CROSS, as a man of honor and veracity, contained in that letter. Any difference of opinion which may exist between them in reference to Arizona is an honest one, to be determined by the weight of authority.

The Arizonian (Mr. CROSS’ paper) has the following paragraph in relation to the affair:

“It is proper to state that, at the time of the duel between Mr. MOWRY and the editor of this paper, a high wind, almost amounting to a gale, was blowing directly across the line of fire, thereby preventing accurate aim. In this case the proverb, “It is an ill wind that blows no good,’ was aptly illustrated.”

The friends of the parties to this affair had for some time feared there would be a difficulty between them, and had endeavored quietly to prevent it, but no compromise could be made. Neither party would retract a word.

Mr. MOWRY is well known as the indefatigable delegate from Arizona. Some years since he resigned his commission in the army, to engage in mining, land speculation, or politics, or whatever might turn up on the frontier. He has at heart the welfare and interest of the Territory; and has labored early and late to persuade Congress to organize the Territory, so that mining laws could be passed, and the resources of the country be developed. For two Winters he has labored at Washington, but as yet his efforts have been without success. He again enters the field as a candidate, with renewed vigor, and will probably be elected without opposition.

Mr. CROSS has for many years been connected with the Press. He is a gentleman of intelligence and education; was formerly one of the editors of the Cincinnati Times, and for two years was the Washington correspondent of that paper, under the cognomon of “Richard Everett.” At the same time he was one of the correspondents of the New-York Herald. Since his residence in Arizona he has corresponded with several Eastern papers; disputing some of Lieut. MOWRY’s statements as to the resources of the country and its population.

Mr. MOWRY has published the following card in reference to his political position:

Editor of the Arizonian:

Will you do me the favor to say that I will cheerfully use my influence, and endeavor to exert that of my friends, to obtain a Judicial District and Surveyor-General’s office for Arizona, in case a Territorial Government cannot be obtained; although I am decidedly of the opinion that the Territorial Government is the only measure of relief that will properly meet the wants of the country. Your obedient servant,

A detachment of one company of infantry and one of dragoons was to leave Fort Fillmore during the present week to select a site for a military post on the Gila River, probably somewhere near Mount Graham. It is understood to be the intention of Government to establish posts on the frontiers of the Apache country.



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