Description of Slade and Maria Virginia

Alternately a man of courteous manner and a merciless killer, he seemingly escaped the notice of Majors’ principled eye when he was taken on by the company as a carry-over from the stumbling Hockaday line. From Fort Kearny to Horseshoe Station, where he lived in unexplained luxury with a sour-countenanced, heavy-haunched wife, Slade ran a tight, fear-struck division, exercising ruthless control with a quickly-riled temper and a ready gun. But his chameleon character was disarming. Mark Twain, quite aware of his awful history, found him “a pleasant person, friendly and gentle-spoken.”