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Title: Law and Order Companies
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What was sometimes styled "vigilant companies" were organized in Warren, as well as other counties in this state, at an early day, before the settlers had the advantage of legal measures and courts, as well as the steam and electric railway lines, with the telephone and telegrapic systems that now form a net-work throughout the domain. These vigilant companies were formed to protect the farmers from the depredations of horse thieves, cattle thieves and counterfeit money men, who frequented this county. Redwood Point became a known and very dangerous point within the settlement for this class of robbers. Property that had been stolen here and farther to the east was concealed here in the deep, wild ravines, and when it was thought safe it was taken out and sold at distant points. Counterfeiter's tools and spurious money were found at the place above mentioned, but the crime of counterfeiting was never fastened on any citizen of Warren county. Reports went current that a poor peddler had been killed not far west from West Lebanon for what little money he was thought to have upon his person. It was believed that his body was thrown into an old well. One night, when the clouds hung low and it was very dark, a company of these vigilants called upon the accused parties, who lived in the vicinity. They were conducted to the well by the company, to them all unknown at the time, and there a thorough search was made both in and near the well, but no body was found, hence the parties were allowed to go their way.

In 1853 a company known as the Milford Regulators, with a membership of thirty-five men, was formed, with captain and lieutenants, and this put a stop to the stealing habit that had for years been going on in this county. Another company, styled the Warren Regulatiors, was organized in 1859; the Grand Prairie Rangers in 1861; the Warren County Detectives were formed in 1865, in Liberty and Washington townships; the Pine Creek Rangers was organized about that date, as were also the Warren County Minute Men. The State Line Detective Company was formed in 1866, just at the close of the Civil war period; its men lived in Kent, Mound and Steuben townships. Other companies were the Liberty Police Rangers, the Liberty Guards, the Rainsville Detectives, the West Lebanon Detectives, the Jordan Rangers, the Kickapoo Guards, all formed to keep down the bandits and horse thieves. Its effect was wholesome, and when guilty persons were caught justice was meted out in quick order. However, the very presence of such home guards kept these objectionable characters from carrying on their illegitimate work.

[Page 293-294.]

Date: 1/1/1913
Origin: Past and Present of Fountain and Warren Counties Indiana
Author: Thomas A. Clifton, Editor
Record ID: 00001276
Type: Book
Source Archive: Williamsport-Washington Township Public Library
Date Entered: 8/10/2001
Collection: Williamsport-Washington Township Public Library
Entered By: Leslie J. Rice

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