About Elijah S. "Lige" Briant
Elijah S. "Lige" Briant (1861-1933) - Born in raised in Simpson County, Kentucky, Briant headed to Texas in the early 1880s. Described as a very quiet and dignified person, he first worked as a school teacher in Coleman, but later joined up with U.S. surveyors plotting the boundaries of Colorado, Wyoming and Arizona. When that job was complete, he returned to Sonora, Texas, where he served as postmaster from 1893 to 1807 and worked owned sheep.
In 1898, he was elected as the Sutton County Sheriff, at a time when the area was over-ridden with lawless elements. But, Briant seemed to fear very little and soon began to clean up the area. In 1900, he was wounded by a robbery suspect but continued on. The following year, on April 2, 1901, he and his deputies, along with former sheriff, Henry Sharp and Constable W.D. Thomason went after Wild Bunch members, Will Carver and Ben Kilpatrick who were known to be hiding in the Ogden Building at Sonora, Texas. Like many of the outlaw captures of the Old West, the two outlaws refused to give up and instead, opened fire on the lawmen. When the smoke cleared, Will Carver was dead and Kilpatrick wounded. Briant received a $1,000 reward for killing Carver, but would later say that he regretted the shooting. Later, he became a county judge before moving to San Antonio, Texas in 1918, and to San Angelo, Texas in 1920. There he worked in the land and stock commission business. He died in San Angelo on December 22, 1933 and was buried at the Fairmont Cemetery.