Feuding’ and Fightin’ Friday: Boyce-Sneed Feud (Because This Is Texas) – Part One


A woman was at the center of this feud in early twentieth-century Texas, a love triangle in which two wealthy cattle ranchers fought over who would win her back – the husband or the lover.  The feud might have started, innocently enough, years before when the two men, John Beal Sneed and Albert Boyce, Jr., vied for the attention of Miss Lenora (Lena) Snyder while attending Southwest University in Georgetown, Texas.

John Sneed won her hand in marriage, but after twelve years of marriage Lena wanted a divorce – and with good reason in her estimation as she had been carrying on an affair with none other than her husband’s college rival, Albert Boyce, Jr.  Sneed, a cattle buyer and lawyer (Princeton graduate) reacted by committing his wife to a sanitarium in Fort Worth to treat her “moral insanity”.  One source related that Lena was treated with calomel (mercury chloride).  It had been common practice in the nineteenth and into the first part of the twentieth century to treat people in the advanced stages of syphilis, which typically would be accompanied by mental illness.

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  1. Can you tell me how to get a copy of the book “Because this is Texas” by Clara Sneed or how to contact the author? My searches have not yielded any results to find a copy.

    • It appears to have been a lengthy article in a 1999 issue of the Panhandle-Plains Historical Review. That issue is listed on their back issue list (you can download the list on this page: http://www.wtamu.edu/museum/about-pphr.aspx). I’m not sure if that implies you can purchase this back issue or not, but it’s worth a try. I really enjoyed writing about the Sneed feud. I used this book as a reference: Vengeance Is Mine: The Scandalous Love Triangle That Triggered the Boyce-Sneed Feud (available at Amazon). Thanks for stopping by Digging History!

  2. I might occasionally consider a guest post but it would have to be submitted for approval first. Do you currently have a blog of your own that I could read? I’m so happy to hear you enjoy the blog — I just love writing it every day. I’m trying to build a bigger audience and hopefully attract some business/interest in my skills as an ancestral and historical researcher (History Depot – http://www.historydepot.net).



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