San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas
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October 17th, 2009
Jack C. Hays rides on film

Jack C. Hays and the Texas Rangers ride in to San Marcos in a new movie about his life. Photo by Margery Hall Marshall.


The Hays County Historical Commission, after months of planning, filming and editing, will be show its film, “Captain Jack- The Story of John Coffee Hays,” at the Alkek Library Theatre at Texas State Sunday at 4 p.m. The public is invited to attend.

Setting the mood for the movie, the Celtaire String Band will give a 20 minute performance before the screening. The band, which specializes in period Americana music, provided some of the soundtrack for the movie.

The 30-minute film tells the story of Jack C. Hayes, starting with his arrival in Texas in 1837 to his death in Oakland, CA, in 1883. The film features re-enactments of historical events including Hays’ meeting with Sam Houston. Other points dramatized in the movie include Hays recruiting Texas Rangers in San Antonio and their battle with the Comanche Indians at Walker’s Creek. The movie also covers his years patrolling south Texas with the Rangers, surveying land and the meeting of Hays and his future wife, Susan Calvert.

Hays led a wagon train west to California and eventually became the first sheriff of San Francisco. Hays also founded the city of Oakland.

The project was directed by Richard Kidd and produced by Kate Johnson. Period music for the film was provided by both the Celtaire String Band and the Gillette Brothers.

Support for the movie came from the Hays County Comissioners Court, citizens, foundations and companies in Hays County.

Additional Sunday afternoon showings in the county will be at the Wimberley Playhouse in Wimberley on Oct. 25 and at the Salt Lick, Thurman Mansion in Dripping Springs on Nov. 1. Both screenings are at 4 p.m. The movie premiered on Oct. 11 at Jack C. Hays High School.

Groups interested in scheduling a screening of the film may contact Richard Kidd at

Another scene from the Jack C Hays Movie. Photo by Margery Hall Marshall.

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