Luke Short

Lorem IpsumShort
Lorem IpsumShort
Shortshort

Luke Short

By Captain Chuck Chambers

Luke Short the Arizona Territorial Ranger, should not be confused with Luke Short, the infamous gunslinger of Tombstone and owner of the Long Branch Saloon in Dodge City. Our Luke was just 18 when the “undertaker’s friend” died in 1893.

Lucas L. Short was born December 8, 1875 at Whitesboro, Grayson County, Texas, the son of John and Lou Short. In 1880, his family was living on his grandparents’ farm in Grayson County and his father and uncle were listed as cattle buyers. In 1898, at Las Vegas, N.M., he married Miss Forrest James. In 1900, Luke and his wife were living in Pagosa Springs, Colorado and he was a sawmill laborer there. Later that year, they moved to Paradise, Arizona then an active mining camp and he was the first peace officer to be elected there. He served several years in that position finally becoming a member of the Arizona Rangers under Capt. Harry Wheeler. He only served a few months in 1908 resigning January 1909 to become a mine supervisor. In 1910, his family was in Pima County where he served as chief deputy sheriff under Sheriff John Nelson. He later served as a guard at the state penitentiary under Thomas Rynning (the former Captain of the Rangers) during the construction of the buildings at the prison.

In 1912, Luke came to Douglas, Arizona to serve as a mounted United States Customs inspector and they lived at 701 17th St. Forest Short died later that year in Douglas on 6 December. She was buried in Calvary cemetery but no headstone was erected.

During the trouble with Mexico, Luke served as a scout for the U.S. troops while they were in the service of the U.S. Department of Justice in Mexico. After World War I, he engaged in mining enterprises in Mexico which he continued until he became badly afflicted by rheu¬matism and came back to the United States. In 1920, Luke was living in Los Angeles with his youngest daughter Bessie and his occupation is listed as a streetcar motorman. He returned to Douglas sometime after that and died there on 5 Jul 1929. His obituary in the Douglas paper states that he was survived by their three daughters - Mrs. Lillian Cobie of Los Angles, California, Mrs. Helen Hamilton and Miss Bessie Short of Taft, California. He was also survived by his mother, Mrs. Lou Short of Gleeson, Arizona and by six brothers and one sister. He was buried next to his wife in Calvary Cemetery also without a headstone.

For eighty years his final resting place was unmarked until The Douglas Company of the Rangers had a headstone made for Luke in December of 2008. He was one of three Territorial Rangers honored at Calvary Cemetery with a special marking ceremony on 15 May 2009.


Page 1 of 2 12