Scalp Harvest and Other Stories by William Heuman
Life on the frontier, from fighting a battle against the rampaging Sioux, to fighting to keep a town from being overcome by a tinhorn’s greed and intimidation.
Scalp Harvest and Other Stories – Life on the frontier from fighting a battle against the rampaging Sioux, to fighting to keep a town from being overcome by a tinhorn’s greed and intimidation.
Gunsmoke On The Arrow (1946) – Rank-proud Major George Brandon led his troops down a redskin glory-trail. And only a renegade shavetail knew that trail ended in bloody Sioux massacre on the open prairie!
A four chapter novelette.
Scalp Harvest (1946) – Only one man could keep the seething caldron of the Sioux Reservation from spilling over and becoming a whooping, blood-crazed torrent threatening to drown the little settlement. Only one man, and Sergeant Morgan Carr knew where to find him—in the biggest gambling hell in town, a bottle near his shaking hands!
A five chapter novelette.
There’s Blood On His Star (1948) – Golden Billy Smith, Marshal of Clover City, backed the law with a soft voice and a loud Colt, until a bust-head boom-town honky-tonk bouncer tried to prove that two hard fists could beat two fast guns!
Chapter One – New Tinhorn for Clover City
Chapter Two – The Fastest Draw
Chapter Three – Grand Opening
Chapter Four – Lights Out
William Heuman (1912–1971) was born in Brooklyn, New York. He began writing westerns for the pulp magazines about 1944, but as they began to die out, he turned to writing direct-to-paperback for Gold Medal, Ace and Avon.
Heuman also screenwrote for television. In 1952 he wrote for The Chevron Theatre, in 1956 he wrote for The Ford Television Theatre, and in 1957 he wrote for Tales of Wells Fargo.
Heuman also wrote a number of sports stories and is probably best remembered for his Horace Higby series of juvenile sports stories.
Scalp Harvest and Other Stories contains 7 illustrations.
Available for and
Excerpt: Gunsmoke on the Arrow
HE STOOD in front of headquarter’s window looking out across the parade grounds where Troop “A”, was drilling. He watched horses and jaunty troopers in short blue cavalry jackets, gray with dust now, blue pants with the yellow stripe down the sides, forage caps, sabers banging on the left side, carbines suspended from belt swivels on the right.
At the desk behind him, Lieutenant Kern Malloy, Fifth United States Cavalry, heard the pen of Major George Brandon scratching foolscap paper, and then the light step of the orderly leaving the room after the pen stopped scratching.
Gray eyes hard, and a certain tightness in his lips, Kern came around. He looked straight into George Brandon’s black eyes —the handsomest eyes at Fort McLane.
Major Brandon sat behind his desk, a cigar in his mouth, smoke curling up toward the log rafters of the ceiling. Brandon was smiling around the cigar, a good-looking man, a wave in his long black hair, straight Roman nose, a well-shaped mouth. He hadn’t changed much in the ten years since they’d graduated from the Academy together. He could still have passed as a ‘shavetail’ just up from the Point, but this hot mid-summer’s afternoon out on the barren Dakota plains he was Major Brandon, acting commander of Fort McLane.
Brandon’s voice was soft, cultured. “What do you think, Kern?” he asked.
Now, with the orderly out of the room, it was ‘Kern’, and not Mr. Malloy. It was ‘Kern’ the way it had been at school, and riding together as Second Lieutenants just graduated from the Point, riding for General Sheridan in the ‘Wilderness’.
Kern Malloy said quietly, “Bowman believes there are nearly a thousand Indians within ten miles of Fort McLane.”
“Some of our Crows just came in,” George Brandon pointed out. “They’ve seen a few scattered war parties—a hundred, two hundred. They could be heading south to raid Kiowa ponies.”
“They wouldn’t be coming so close to the post if that were true,” Kern said. “They’d give us a wide berth.”
“You think they mean trouble?” Brandon asked softly, and the light was in his eyes again—the light Kern Malloy did not like to see. George Brandon had been his best friend—back at the Point, through four years of bloody warfare between the States, another four years, a rather dull four years, in Indian Territory. He knew Brandon—knew the things that were going on inside his head. He could almost see the wheels turning.
Kern didn’t answer right away, and Major Brandon went on coolly, thoughtfully, “Wouldn’t you think, Kern, that Sioux warparties hanging around in the vicinity of the post called for—for a show of strength?”
Kern Malloy’s eyes flickered, and an old saber cut across his left shoulder, sustained in the shambles of Shiloh, began to ache, and these were the only indications that he’d once again read George Brandon’s mind. He’d read it also two days before when the word came that Colonel Lawrence, in command at Fort McLane, had suddenly been stricken ill and would have to leave for the east for a possible operation, thus putting Major Brandon in temporary command of the strategic post on the border of the Indian country and along the line of the Bozeman Trail.
Brandon had been chafing at the bit ever since he’d been assigned to Fort McLane. Brandon loved the blare of the bugle and the charge. He liked the smell of gunpowder in his nostrils, and this forced inactivity while the patient Colonel Lawrence tried to parley with the powerful Sioux chieftain, Running Bear, went against his grain.
Back east, at a civic banquet, George Brandon had publicly stated that, ‘given three troops of United States Cavalry he could ride through the whole Sioux nation.’
Kern Malloy was thinking about that now, remembering that Brandon had his three troops here at Fort McLane, and that he was in complete command of the post until the War Department got around to appointing another man. It could be weeks before the appointee would reach McLane, and the Sioux were present now, almost encircling the post, hitting at small patrols and wood details, giving occasion for open battle.
“A show of strength,” Kern said quietly, “might precipitate open battle, Major.” He watched George Brandon puff on the cigar and look through the window, eyes half-closed. Brandon wanted battle very definitely; Brandon wanted to go back east again as a conquering hero. He wanted brevets; he wanted advancement and there had been none since the Big War ceased and the tremendous Grand Army of the Republic was reduced to a handful of soldiers patrolling the wagon trails to California and to Oregon.
Excerpt From: William Heuman. “Scalp Harvest and Other Stories.”
More by William Heuman