Constable T. C. Craig

Constable T. C. Craig

Houston County Constable's Office - Precinct 3, Texas

End of Watch Tuesday, April 27, 1875

T. C. Craig

David Land was charged with cattle theft and when the sheriff attempted to arrest him, Land assaulted the sheriff. Land was under indictment in district court for theft of cattle, and assault with intent to murder the sheriff when he escaped from the county jail. Land stole a horse from M.C. Dupuy. Dupuy and Constable Craig started in pursuit, and after going out seven miles, overtook the suspect, who hid in the brush. Land fired on Constable Craig and Dupuy. One round hit the constable and killed him instantly. Dupuy was also shot and dangerously wounded. Land escaped.

On May 1st a suspicious man appeared in Phelps Station on the Great Northern Railroad and the description matched that of Land. Deputy Sheriff W.E. Hall and Constable W.C. Parker determined that it was the wrong man, but a group of citizens who had been drinking demanded the reward money to release the man. A brawl ensued and one citizen was killed. Later the same day a group of citizens captured Land while he was sleeping at a friend’s house. He was arrested and bound across a horse, feet and neck being tied together. The men carried him 10 miles and gave him a choice – jail or die? The men said Land chose to die. His body was riddled with buckshot and left in the woods.

Land was a widower with five children in the 1870 census. His place of burial is unknown. The precinct 3 constable position no longer exists.


  • Age 57
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Unknown weapon
  • Offender Killed by posse

Most Recent Reflection

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Constable Craig,
On today, the 142nd anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Houston County.


United States Border Patrol

April 27, 2017

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