By Patrick Dearen
Along a lot of its Texas stretch this present day, the Pecos is simply a polluted trickle, squeezing via a jungle of salt cedars that choke banks sloughed and overlooked. the trendy motorist crossing it via bridge is prone to greet it with a yawn than with visceral emotion. yet have been he to learn the heritage buried deep in its banks, he may locate the sweat and blood of cowhands who knew this ghost because the so much ambitious and treacherous river within the West.
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Extra info for A cowboy of the Pecos
9 The Pecos, no matter the location or era, always proved challenging anytime cowhands turned cattle into its waters. A major concern was ensuring that a herd entered the river exactly where a ford's sloping banks Page 15 allowed access and egress. "You can have all kinds of hell," noted Billy Rankin, who crossed herds in the late 1920s and early 1930s. . . (Author) Rankin, who leased a forty-one-section ranch near Horsehead Crossing in 1928, had firsthand knowledge of just how unmanageable the banks were for an animal drifting downstream in the water.
Campbell's Route to California"). 23. W H. Boyd, interview with Haley, Sweetwater, 24 January 1932, Haley Collection, Haley Library, Midland. 24. Jim Lane Cook, as told to T. M. Pearce, Lane of the Llano (Boston: Little, Brown & Company, 1936), 8. 25. Such an incident occurred on Charles Goodnight's first drive to the Pecos in 1866. See Charles Goodnight, "Recollections II," 70, typescript, Haley Library. 26. See log of Michael Erskine, and log of James G. Bell. Page 26 27. , Diary of Michael Erskine, 160 ("Memo of Mr.
39 The first drover to identify Texas Bend and turn a herd into its coil was Robert K. 42 There, the Pecos intercepts a northeast-trending draw known today as Narrow Bow43likely a corruption of Narbo. ," recalled J. K. Millwee, who drove the trail in 1868. 45 Page 38 Their bellies once more bloated, beeves forged another twelve miles upriver to water at Sand Bend, where low, broken hills mark yet another sharp crook into the sunset. 46 Leaving the Pecos to its own meanderings, the animals cut a trace ten miles northwest to yet another landmark on the riverPope's Camp,47 headquarters for an ambitious drilling project initiated in 1855.
A cowboy of the Pecos by Patrick Dearen
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