Austin Ira Aten (Austin Ira Aten)

Austin Ira Aten

Texas Ranger. Born in Cairo, Illinois, in 1862, he later moved to Round Rock,Texas, with his father, who was a methodist minister. In 1878, while living in Round Rock, he witnessed the death of outlaw Sam Bass by the Texas Rangers. This is when he decided to be a lawman. In 1883, Aten joined the Texas Rangers and was assigned to Company D, under Captain L.P. Selker and later promoted Sergeant under Frank Jones. He served first as a Regular Ranger and then a Special Ranger until 1891, working in and around the Rio Grande area, sometimes without pay. He was involved in many cases usually acting as a ranch hand, but his most famous case was the ‘Fence Cutting Wars’ (1886 to 1888), where individuals would put up barbed wire on public property and claim as there own, sometimes leading to violence or murder. It was his job to track down these individuals known as ‘Fence Cutters.’ The war eventually stopped after Aten claimed he had put dynamite in and around these areas. In 1890 he was appointed sheriff of Fort Bend County and of Castro County in 1893. In 1904 he moved to Imperial Valley, California, and was appointed to a post on the Imperial Valley District Board, which oversaw the construction of the Boulder Dam and the All-American Canal. In 1945 his memoirs was published in the magazine, ‘Frontier Times’ by J. Marvin Hunter. He died from pneumonia at the age of 91 in 1953. He was inducted into the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame in Waco, Texas. (bio by: K)  Family links:  Parents:  Austin Cunningham Aten (1832 – 1924)  Catherine Eveline Dunlap Aten (1833 – 1897)  Spouse:  Imogen Boyce Aten (1867 – 1957)*  Children:  Marion Hughes Aten (1892 – 1961)*  Albert Boyce Aten (1894 – 1918)*  Imogen Aten (1898 – 1987)*  Eloise Elsie Aten Radder (1908 – 1976)*  Siblings:  Angeline Elizabeth Aten Kimmons (1854 – 1890)*  Austin Ira Aten (1862 – 1953)  Calvin Grant Aten (1868 – 1939)*  Edwin Dunlap Aten (1871 – 1953)* *Calculated relationship


  • September, 03, 1862
  • USA


  • July, 07, 1953
  • USA


  • Evergreen Cemetery
  • California
  • USA

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