Doniphan's Expedition and the Conquest of New Mexico and California
by William Elsey Connelly
pp. 137-138 (footnote to text)
"... They left Shreveport, La., on May 10, 1865, and went to Monterey, Mexico. In this party were Col. A.M. Standish, Col. A.H. Conron, Major S.C. Williams, and others. There General Parsons determined to return to the United States, and with Col. Standish, Col. Conron, and Major Williams set out on July 16. With them was "Dutch Bill," the servant of Col. Standish. On the same evening General Parsons, Col. Standish, Col. Conron, and "Dutch Bill" encamped near a small town called Chino, just beyond the San Juan River, leaving Major Williams back on the road to exchange his horse, which was lame. About nine o'clock that night General Parsons and his party were attacked by Mexican soldiers, and, after being overpowered, were murdered, and their bodies thrown into the river. On the following morning Major Williams made a diligent search for them but their bodies were never seen again. This fact made the families hope that they might have escaped, but this hope was finally abandoned. The facts in regard to the murder were not known until the families presented claims for indemnity against the Mexican Government, when the whole matter was made public. The claims were pending for ten years, but finally allowed, and paid in gold.
"Colonel Austin M. Standish was born at Cahara House, County Limerick, Ireland, and came to the United States in 1851, locating in Missouri. He was an accomplished civil engineer, and was for years chief engineer of the Missouri Pacific Railroad. In 1857 he was married to Miss Mildred Parsons, sister to General Parsons, at Jefferson City. He was a splendid soldier. At Wilson Creek his horse was shot from under him, and his watch alone saved his life; at Pleasant Hill, La., he was painfully wounded. He was murdered with General Parsons and others by the Mexicans. The Mexicans afterward displayed a case of engineering instruments which had belonged to him, and also a watch taken from General Parsons."