About Isaac "Ike" Stockton (leader of the Stockton Gang)
Isaac "Ike” Stockton (1852-1881) - Born and raised in Texas, Stockton was an outlaw and leader of the Stockton Gang of robbers in northern New Mexico. Making his way to Lincoln, New Mexico in 1874, Stockton ran a saloon for a brief time before moving north to Colfax County, New Mexico later that year. No doubt, he had some involvement in the infamous Colfax County War that took place in 1875-76. He and his brother, Port, moved to Trinidad, Colorado briefly in 1876, but after Port killed a man in December, they moved on to western Colorado. There, the two posed as cattleman, settling in the Animas Valley around 1878. Unbeknownst to area residents, Ike was actually running a gang of robbers called the Stockton Gang. They also became involved in a bitter feud with they were now with the Simmons family in nearby Farmington, New Mexico. Sometimes referred to as the San Juan County War, the Simmons’ accused the Stocktons of stealing their cattle and selling the beef to army posts. The "war” erupted into full scale shoot-outs and lynchings in 1880.
On August 24, 1881, one of the gang members, Burt Wilkinson, killed Marshal Clate Ogsbury of Silverton, Colorado and a $2,500 reward was offered for his arrest. Ever the scoundrel, Ike turned in his own gang member in order to secure the reward money. Nineteen year-old Wilkinson was arrested and lynched on September 4th.
But, local law certainly didn’t see Stockton as any kind of hero. They soon dug up a New Mexico warrant for Ike for the murder of a man named Aaron Barker in 1881. When Silverton Deputy Sheriff Jim Sullivan went to arrest, Ike, the scoundrel resisted and the deputy shot him in the leg. The outlaw died after having his leg amputated on September 27, 1881. Later, it was said that Deputy Sullivan claimed to hate a traitor more than a murderer.