Granddad’s Days as a West Texas Cattle Rancher

G.M.C. Family, 1931 — infant Tom in front row

G.M.C. Family, 1931

Granddad wrote of his many endeavors from farming in east Texas as a young man to teaching in multiple rural schools across Texas to running a Star mail route to hustling highway work when he found himself suddenly out of work and in need of a job.

Here, he recalls a time when he decided to raise some cattle on a small ranch near Carlsbad, Texas, 20 miles from San Angelo.

And then from that time I was in charge out on the farm near Carlsbad; And by the time that he moved to Marfa, I was getting my cows that I had straightened out and a few more good cows, I had one registered Jersey cow and bought another; And just in a little while, I bought six fine young registered Heifers that were springers; and prepared for a real spree with the Fine Registered Jerseys when I bought 6 other cows — all registered.

Then I made the worst mistake ever when I traded with a young man that had a big family started; to go out there, and take up the Job of looking after the stock; and crops; and share with me; the lease, and the benefits of the lease; and stock of the farm.

There are no two people that see everything that pertains to a business as big as that was just alike: soon the other fellow wanted to go into the army; and I had to take the affair over; and let him sell his stock off, And I bought such stock; as I wanted that he had; and then as I had not enough sense to profit by the past; I went and traded with another man to take the same place that he had occupied, and this time I was hurt too bad to try to get over it; and we worried along till my lease had worn out; and I had to give it up; For the place had sold; and the buyer wanted to move on the place himself.

I ought to have moved onto the place myself, and operated it, and no one else would have had a say so about the whole affair; And I had a chance to buy it; and would have done it If I had moved up there myself.

I had at this time that I had to give up the place 41 head of registered Cows, Male & Female; but right at the time that I had to give up the Lease; Stock was down in price; and I just bought a small acreage with a large home; and moved them over there where there had been no stock; and when they had grazed it out; I cut Pear (Spineless) and hauled meal and hulls for feed for them till they had calved out; and I had sold those that were salable; And then after grazing the rest of them for a couple of months.

And I throwed them on the market; and cashed them in; and took my whipping in the deal for not taking things in my own hands at the start; But we are never able to see ahead like we can see behind; And we are always able to see our mistakes after we have made them; and it is too late to retrieve our losses.

About bullersbackporch

I am a native Austinite, a high-tech Luddite, lover of music, movies and stories and a born trainer-explainer.
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