Queer Places:
Phillips Academy, 180 Main St, Andover, MA 01810
Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138
Wickenburg Massacre Site Wickenburg, Maricopa County, Arizona, USA

Frederick Wadsworth Loring (December 12, 1848 - November 5, 1871) was an American journalist, novelist and poet.

A novel by Frederick Wadsworth Loring, titled Two College Friends, published in 1871, is set at Harvard University and, later, during the Civil War. Loring dedicated his story to his Harvard friend and classmate, William Wigglesworth Chamberlin, suggesting that the chums of the novel paralleled these chums in life. Two College Friends, which featured highly charged scenes of young men in battle during the Civil War, has been singled out as an important work in the history of romantic male friendship. His characters, Tom ("soft, curling brown hair, deep blue eyes and dazzling complexion") and Ned ("the complexion is olive, the eyes brown., the lips strongly cut"), fall in love in school and eventually go off to war together. In a torrid scene at the novel's end, Ned visits Tom, who is lying wounded in a military hospital: "O my darling, my darling, my darling! please hear me. The only one I have ever loved at all, the only one who has ever loved me... O Tom, my darling! don't forget it. If you knew how I love you, how I have loved you in all my jealous, morbid moods, in all my exacting selfishness, - O Tom, my darling, my darling!"

Loring was born on December 12, 1848, in Boston, Massachusetts, to David and Mary Hall Stodder Loring.[1] He was a fifth great grandson to immigrant Thomas Loring.[1] He graduated from Phillips Academy, Andover, in 1866, and then from Harvard University, where he first made his mark with contributions to the Harvard Advocate, in 1870. Inheriting a love of literature from his mother, who died when he was eleven, he quickly gained in stature as an up-and-coming American author.[2] In 1871, he published a novel, Two College Friends, and a book of poems, The Boston Dip and Other Verses. He also made numerous contributions, both fiction and non-fiction, to such periodicals as The Atlantic Monthly, Appleton's Journal, Old and New, The Independent, and Every Saturday during this time.


Frederick Wadsworth Loring, in his campaign costume, with his mule "Evil Merodach". Taken about 48 hours before the Wickenburg massacre

In the spring of 1871, Appleton's Journal sent Loring as a correspondent on a cartographic expedition to Arizona led by Lieutenant George M. Wheeler of the US Army Corps of Engineers. The articles Loring wrote included "A Council of War," "A Glimpse of Mormonism,"[4] "Silver Mining in Nevada," and "The Valley of Death." Their party suffered several setbacks, and in August 1871 Loring wrote to his employers from Death Valley: "I am bootless, coatless, everything but lifeless. I have had a fortnight of horrors. This morning an Indian fight capped the climax. However, I am well and cheerful."[5] Although they escaped from the valley, his party's carriage was attacked on November 5 by a band of Yavapai near Wickenburg, Arizona, while on the way to La Paz. That ambush came to be known as the Wickenburg Massacre. The driver, Loring, and four other passengers were killed. After his death, he was mourned by Charles Reade as the most promising of all young American authors.[5] Several of Loring's poems, including "In the Old Churchyard at Fredericksburg" and "The Old Professor", have appeared in American verse anthologies.

Based upon a letter that Kruger wrote to Loring’s family, five of the men who died at the scene were reportedly buried in Wickenburg on November 6th, three hours after a hastily called inquest. The sixth man, William Salmon, was not discovered until the morning of the 6th and was reportedly buried in a “deep cut in the hillside.” [Reference 3] Later reports claim that his remains were exhumed from the hillside and laid next to the other five men several weeks or months later. For unexplained reasons, the local graves of these men were reportedly “disturbed” in 1949 and then disappeared from local records. The original location of their presumed graves in Wickenburg is a matter of some conjecture, but would likely have been either the Stone Park Cemetery or the so-called “Lumber Yard” Cemetery next to the present location of the Wickenburg Sun — since no other cemeteries were known to exist at that time. In the years that followed, the remains were said to have been exhumed and reinterred at least twice to new locations. The last re-interment may have returned the remains to the original site of the ambush — at least according to legend. Unfortunately, any records that could explain the reasons for moving these burials from the original cemetery are now lost in time.

The rock pile with the wood cross is believed to be the grave of Frederick Loring, who was riding on top of the stage coach with the driver, “Dutch” John Lance, and another passenger, Charles Adams. There are additional graves to the left, uphill beyond the cross. The most distant grave from “Loring’s cross” is roughly 120 feet to the northeast and may belong to William Salmon. Records clearly indicate that he was killed very near to that location. He may have been buried (or re-interred) at this spot. Local descendants of that era grew up with an understanding that the victims were buried where they died and were never transported to Wickenburg. These strongly held beliefs persist to the present time.


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