In early September 1890, according to the Sedalia Weekly Bazoo, a man who called himself Porter arrived in Sedalia. The 35-year-old man was about 5 feet, 5 inches tall and had square shoulders, auburn hair and a heavy mustache. He wore cowboy boots and told people he was a mule buyer from LaJora, Colorado. He wore a Grand Army of the Republic badge, meaning that he was a veteran of the Civil War, and was from Custer Post, No. 2, in Saguachi, Colorado.