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with venison and bear meat and honey to trade to us for bread, whiskey and tobacco. In the little settlement of Quihi, about six miles from Vanderburg, there was a small saloon, and an Indian went there and got on a spree. He stayed around for about a week, drunk, but did not molest anyone. A man named Allen came along and found this Indian there and killed him without cause, and from that time on the Indians became hostile and killed many of the settlers.
My father died while I was quite young, but before
his death he bought two cows, and from this start we raised a nice stock of cattle. When the Civil War broke out I joined as a private and remained in the army until the close of that great struggle. When I returned from the war I found that our nice stock of cattle had dwindled down to only a few head. But, not discouraged, I made another start in that line and after several years of trading, buying and raising I accumulated several hundred head of cattle and fine horses.
A long time before the Civil War we had to plant and
hoe our corn in the open land, as there were no fences. We had no teams or implements to prepare our land. It was a hard matter in those days to make a living, but we had to pull together—and pull we did. We had no school or church in our neighborhood, none nearer than Castroville, fifteen miles away, and through such misfortune I received no education. I am now 77 years of age. In conclusion I wish to say that I farmed and raised cattle and good horses from the time I was a boy until a few years ago, when I retired and sold my entire stock of cattle, horses and my brands, and divided my ranch lands among my children.
EDITOR'S NOTE. Since the above sketch was written, Mr. Wanz had been “gathered unto his fathers,” his death occurring in the fall of 1922.
EXPERIENCES OF A TEXAS PIONEER
By John M. Sharpe No résumé, writeup or talk on the development of the cattle industry in Texas, or the Northwest for that matter, would be complete without giving considerable space to the achievements of the Snyder Brothers, D. H. and J. W., who have been residents of the state for more than sixty-five years, their operations extending from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific slope. While it is almost impossible to speak of the experiences and achievements of the one without the
D. H. SNYDER other, for they were not only brothers but steadfast friends and business associates, it is our privilege at this time to speak of a few of the vast and ever-changing experiences of Col. Dudley H. Snyder, the oldest brother and senior member of the firm, who was known for more than fifty years in all the great cattle marts of the country as the one man who could, and did, fill his contracts promptly, it mattered not the number of the thousands of head he had agreed to furnish nor the distance it was necessary to traverse in order to make the delivery. There was never any doubt in the minds of the contractors who had purchased cattle from him; they knew that delivery would be made on the day appointed and at the place agreed upon.
Col. D. H. Snyder was born in the grand old state of Mississippi in 1833, the year the stars fell. His father died in 1840, leaving a widow and four children, three sons and one daughter. The father, a prudent business man, had prepared for the eventuality of death, and left the dependent wife and mother in reasonably good circumstances, her property being composed of interestbearing securities, loans, etc. In 1841, the year following the death of the father, the great panic came upon the Republic and the studied investments of the widow were carried away on the swelling tide of misfortune, leaving the family in circumstances, from a financial standpoint, that were more meager than they had ever known before. Col. Snyder, being the eldest son, assisted in caring for his mother and the younger children, during the years that intervened, and in 1854 he came to Texas by way of Ozark, Ark., and Mansfield, La., having secured a position with a horse dealer who furnished him a horse to ride and the food he ate in consideration of his services with the herd. From this trader, Col. Snyder says he learned one of the most important lessons of his life, "a man never makes money in selling a horse—the money is made in buying it."
Arriving in Texas, his first stop was at Round Rock, in Williamson county, where he visited his grandfather, Dr. Thos. Hade, who also was a pioneer merchant. The
good man gave the young grandson a job collecting accounts at ten per cent on the total amount collected. This work carried him on horseback all over Central West Texas, and from the employment he realized a net earning of fifteen dollars per month. Finding this a very slow process toward fortune the young Mississippian concluded he would try farming the next year. Renting some land from one of the settlers in the community where his grandfather resided, he set to work getting things in order to make a crop. He had no team, but succeeded in borrowing one work-ox from a neighbor with which to do his plowing. One not being enough, the resourceful pioneer caught up a wild steer from the range and with the team set to work breaking land and planting his crop. After gathering the crop he secured a team of five yoke of oxen, a heavy wagon and hauled cedar from mills in Bastrop county to Williamson and Travis counties. After that he made several trips to Missouri, returning at intervals with teams and new wagons, and these were loaded with apples and other delicacies unobtainable in Texas, which were sold at a good profit
Deciding to go into the horse business, Col. Snyder walked to San Antonio where he put all of his earnings into a small herd of Spanish ponies, which he drove to Missouri and exchanged for Missouri horses. These he brought back to Texas, and on account of their size and adaptability as draft horses he sold at good prices and a substantial gain over their purchase price, taking advantage of the valuable lesson he had learned from his first employer, i.e., that the money made in handling horses is to be made on the purchase and not the selling price.
In 1862 Col. Snyder received a proposition from Terrel Jackson, a wealthy planter and land owner of Chappell Hill, Washington county, proposing to put him in charge of a contract to deliver beef cattle to the Commissary Department of the Confederate Army, he having made a contract with Major Ward, of that department, to furnish the Confederate government with thousands of head for the purpose of providing meat for the soldiers. These cattle were driven to a point of delivery under the personal supervision of Col. Snyder through sparsely settled and dangerous country, and in order to reach their destination it was necessary to swim the herd across some of the greatest rivers of the South, one of these being the Mississippi. In order to expedite the work of crossing these rivers Col. Snyder secured two "lead steers” which were trained swimmers, and upon arriving at a stream these water steers would plunge right in and the herd would follow without trouble.
After the close of the war, in which Col. Snyder did valiant service, both as a citizen furnishing beef and as a soldier, he turned his face to the great Northwest, and his herds year after year, in ever-increasing numbers, for more than a quarter of a century, wended their way toward the setting sun, followed by the sturdy cowboys of that day who placed their faith in God, their trusty six-shooter and the “chuck wagon.”
In the spring of 1868 Col. Snyder employed Col. W. C. Dalrymple, of Georgetown, a noted scout and Indian fighter, to command his outfit, and with a large crew of cowboys, every one veteran, well provisioned and armed, started Northwest with a herd of fourteen hundred head of cattle. These were secured in Burnet, Llano, and Mason counties and were paid for in gold at the rate of $1.50 per head for yearlings and $2.50 for two-year-olds; $3.50 for three-year-olds and cows and $7.00 for beef steers. On this drive Col. Snyder learned another important and remunerative lesson. It had been the custom of cattlemen when driving large herds of cattle across the unwatered plains to stop and kill all the calves in the herd on the theory that they impeded the progress of the herd and were unable to stand the tortures of thirst. After putting in a day at this gruesome business