In 1854 Comanche County, Texas was still two years away from being organized as a county, and just the name COMANCHE was enough to strike fear into the hearts of even the bravest adventurer. It was here, right through the center of what today is known as the town of Comanche, that the fierce Comanche Indians often roamed as they ranged through this part of the state.
It was in the summer of 1854 that young Martin Fleming and his father, Washington Fleming, first entered what many simply referred to as Indian Territory. It was to be a trip that Mart would never forget!
Just 15 years old, Martin Fleming accompanied his father into the Indian Territory to scope out the “North Leon River Country” which was being issued by the government. The area was reputed to be extremely fertile and very conducive to farming and ranching. Young Fleming was apparently proud to have been invited along on such a venture.
After establishing that the area lived up to its reputation, the Flemings made camp under a group of live oak trees located on what today would be the southwest corner of the courthouse square in Comanche.
Sometime in the night, father and son were awakened by loud voices and the thundering sound of horses running toward them. According to young Mart, he had only enough time to dive behind the trunk of the nearest tree. From here he watched as the Comanches thundered past.
By the early light of dawn, Martin and his father were shocked to see that the trunk of the very tree that had sheltered the boy was full of arrows. According to Martin Fleming, he pulled several of the arrows out of the tree; he wanted to keep these to remind him of his harrowing night.5..…Citations may be found in The View From The Old Oak Tree by Fredda Davis Jones