William Armstrong's grave marker
The grave marker of William Armstrong, who was killed in 1903 by an enraged bull. (Photo by Brad Fuqua/Philomath News)

Published as it appeared on April 29, 1903, in the Corvallis Times, Page 3, Column 3.

Attacked Without Warning and Fought Long—William Armstrong.

With collar bone broken, several ribs crushed that their broken ends rested in his lungs, and with many other injuries about the chest and head, William Armstrong, a well known citizen of Benton county, died late Monday evening, two hours after he had been rescued from the furious attack of a Jersey bull. Mr. Armstrong was the father of Mrs. A.O. Bowersox, whose husband died a few years ago, from the effects of a kick from a horse. With Mrs. Armstrong, he resided at the home of Mrs. Bowersox, whose farm, four miles south of Philomath, joins his own. The two families have lived together ever since the death of Arthur Bowersox.

The bull that killed Mr. Armstrong was a jersey, and was without horns. The animal had been in the pasture during the day, and in the evening, Mr. Armstrong had gone out to bring him to the barn. There was a ring in the animal’s nose, with chain attached. Mr. Armstrong was on the way to the barn with the bull, and within 100 or 200 yards of the house the bull made attack. One account is that the man stooped down for some reason and the bull with a loud bellow attacked him unexpectedly. Armstrong was knocked prostate, and after he had fallen the animal kept up the attack, standing over and butting him persistently about the body. Armstrong was 68 years of age, and this, with his injuries made it impossible for him to do aught, to escape. Not unil the bellowing attracted the attention of the household, and of the 12-year-old grandson, coming from school, did help arrive. The brave boy seized a club and went at once to the rescue of his grandfather, but all his efforts to beat the enraged animal off were unavailing.

Directed by the victim, he brought a shotgun from the house, and sent a charge of shot into the bull’s nose. This drove the animal away, and with difficulty, the badly injured man was assisted to the house. James Henderson, who resided half a mile distant was attracted by the bellowing, and soon arrived on the scene. Medical aid was summoned, and Dr. Loggan arrived, but only a short time before Mr. Armstrong died. Dr. Cathey of Corvallis, was also summoned, but he did not reach the bedside until after death had claimed the victim. The attack occurred shortly after four o’clock, and Armstrong died after six.

John Armstrong, a son of the deceased has been summoned from Wallace, Idaho, and the funeral arrangements await his arrival.

(Editor’s note: Genealogical records, including the grave marker, indicate Mr. Armstrong was age 65 at death, not 68 as shown in the story).

Published as it appeared as part of a briefs package on May 2, 1903, in the Corvallis Times, Page 2, Column 4.

The remains of William Armstrong, who was killed by a bull last Monday, was buried in Newton cemetery Wednesday. The funeral procession is said to have been a mile in length.