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resided there, but as many Indians as there are now white inhabitants. He began working for Col. Meyers at a salary of $30 per month, which was steadily advanced until the third year, when he took entire control of his employer's trail business at a salary of $1,800 per year and expenses. He continued in this position for seven years, during which time he drove herds to Abilene, Wichita, Great Bend, Ellsworth and Dodge City, Kansas, and also to Cheyenne, Wyoming, Salt Lake City, Utah, and the Humbolt River in Nevada, across to California, and to the various Indian agencies on the Upper Missouri River and the Black Hills country. His business relations with Colonel Meyers were terminated in 1873 by the death of the latter gentleman. In 1875 he assumed the general management of the extensive cattle business of Ellison, Dewees & Bishop of San Antonio, handling from 30,000 to 50,000 cattle annually. In the spring of 1878 the firm dissolved, and Mr. Head formed a partnership with Mr. Bishop for the handling of the cattle on the ranch and on the trail. The firm of Bishop & Head existed until 1883, when the prevailing high prices induced Mr. Head to insist upon a sale of the partnership property, which was accomplished over the friendly protest of Mr. Bishop. In May, 1883, Mr. Head accepted the management of the Prairie Cattle Company, the largest concern of the kind in the world. He filled this position for three years, during which time he marketed from the ranches of the company 54,000 head of cattle, netting $1,300,000, and branded for the company from its herds more than 83,000 calves, and after paying all expenses, interest on debenture bonds, and also paying dividends to its stockholders amounting in three years to 42 per cent of the capital invested, the company had about 5,000 more cattle than when he assumed the management of its business, and an undivided surplus of about $80,000. His salary for his service with the company was $20,000 per annum. When he severed connection with the Prairie Cattle Co., its employees presented him with a solid silver service costing $1,500.
In 1886 Mr. Head was elected president of the International Range Association, representing the live stock industry of the plains, from the Gulf of Mexico to British Columbia, and west to the Pacific coast. He was one of the original promoters of the American Cattle Trust, and maintained his headquarters in Denver, Colorado, while acting as general manager of that association. He was principal owner of the Phoenix Farm and Ranch Co., of Mora county, New Mexico, which was one of the most systematically conducted properties in the entire West. Mr. Head was also a large stockholder in the Fort Stockton Livestock & Land Company of Texas, which owned 50,000 acres of land, 20,000 of which was under irrigation. He also owned a farm of above 700 acres at his old home in Caldwell county, Texas.
In 1892 Mr. Head moved from Denver, Colorado, to his famous Phoenix Ranch near Watrous, New Mexico, and from there to Las Vegas in the fall of 1901. He died April 8, 1906, leaving his wife, two daughters, and a son, R. G. Head, Jr.
SKETCH OF. J. M. CHOATE
The subject of this sketch, known to all the old cowmen as “Monroe" Choate, was born in Tennessee, April 28, 1822. He was married to Miss Mary Elizabeth Adkinson, June 2, 1844, and they had ten children, eight boys and two girls. Only one of these children is living today, S. P. Choate of Kennedy, Texas, who was next to the youngest child.
Mr. Choate moved to Karnes county in 1855 and settled on Hondo Creek, where he lived until his death, which occurred August 9, 1899. He was buried in the Runge cemetery.
Monroe Choate was one of the largest cattle operators in that section of the state, and often drove cattle to Louisiana before the trail opened to northern markets. When the driving of stock to Kansas started he was among the first to send cattle up the trail. He was a man of many sterling qualities, generous, whole-souled, thoughtful of his men, full of wit and humor, and the life of his outfit on the trail and in camp. He was highly esteemed by all who knew him, and after the trail driving days were over he settled down to a quiet and active life on his place in Karnes county.
Several of his sons were trail drivers, among them we mention, J. H. Choate, born in Mississippi, August 29, 1847, died at Helena, Karnes county, Texas, and is buried there; D. C. Choate, born February 17, 1851, in Leon county, Texas, died in Dodge City, Kansas, in 1878, and is buried there; K. B. Choate, born February 1, 1858, in Karnes county, Texas, died in Dodge City, Kansas, July 4, 1884 and is buried at Goliad, Texas.
W. M. CHOATE
W. M. Choate was born in Leon county, Texas, May 14, 1854, moved to Karnes county with his parents in 1856 and lived there continuously until 1889, then moved to Del Rio, and worked cattle in Mexico for three years. He was for two years a deputy United States marshal at Del Rio. In 1895 he returned to Karnes county, and was appointed inspector for the Cattle Raisers' Association, which position he held for fifteen years, living at Karnes City and Cuero during the time. Later he made his home in San Antonio for three years, and then moved to Beeville where he died in June, 1915.
Mr. Choate made his first trip up the trail when he was fifteen years old with his father's herd. Later he drove horses for himself to Kansas. The greater portion of his life was spent in stock business. On January 9, 1884, he was happily married to Miss Pollie Porter, who still survives him and resides at Pettus, Texas.
CROSSED THE ARKANSAS RIVER IN A SKIFF
James Henry Saul, known among the old timers as Little Jim Saul, was born six miles from Huntsville in Walker county, Texas, June 26, 1849. While he was quite small his parents moved to Williamson county, and located on the San Gabriel, twelve miles above Georgetown, where they lived for two years, then moved to Brushy Creek, a bout twelve miles below Round Rock.
Mr. Saul grew up in the cattle business. When he was 23 years old, in 1872, he took a herd of 1,000 head of his own cattle from Williamson county to Baxter Springs, Kansas. Among his
JIM SAUL hands were Buck and Jack Blanton, the Crum brothers, the Summers brothers, and his brother, Charlie Saul.
His next drive was made in 1879 to Ogallala, Nebraska, with 2,800 head, and in 1879 he drove 2,900 head to Caldwell, Kansas. On one of these trips, when Mr. Saul reached the Arkansas River he found it on a rampage and about five hundred yards wide. The ferry had washed away, so he employed some Indians to make a skiff out of a cottonwood log, and the men and supplies were taken across in this skiff, while the wagon was taken down and floated across. The herd took the water and made it by swimming.