Monday, May 16, 2016

My Favorite Story

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As another Lame Cherry exclusive in matter anti matter.

I have a few main stories that I can read over and over again. Some are like the 1873 Buffalo Hunt and others are as this one from Our Wild Indians, by Lt. Col. Washington Irving Dodge.
I share this story, because it is a life lesson for all Americans in what Americans were once, and how choices are made with consequences.

This is the story of an American Rancher in Kansas.

Oh and if you ever read Larry McMurtry in Lonesome Dove. He plagiarized most of the work of Colonel Dodge for the basis of his fortune and left the real Heroes to be unknown who took the chances and created the America now being stolen from Americans, as much as Europe from the Europeans.

A few years ago the beef contractor at one of the 
military posts in the Indian Territory had an adven- 
ture which I will let him tell in his own idiom. 

"Wall, boys, I was mighty nigh onto busted that 
time, an' I'll tell you about it. You see I'd worked 
hard an' roughed it, an' got a nice little lot of cattle. 
The contract for this post was to be let, I bid on it, 


an' got it. Wall, my cattle was none ojf the best, the 
grass was poor, an' afore long the commandin' officer 
says to me, says he, f There's complaints agin your 
beef, you must do better, or I will order the com- 
missary to buy good beef and charge it to yer.' Says 
I, f Commandin' officer, I know my beef is none of the 
best, but give me a little time, and I'll get yer the 
very best.' All right,' says he, but do it.' So next 
mornin' I put some money in my belt and started for 
Texas. I bought a hundred and fifty head of first 
class beef, and hired a Mexican boy to help me drive 
'em. He was only a little chap about twelve years 
old, but he was powerful bright and handy, and, sand ! 
lots ! I had a breech-loadin' rifle, and pistols, but the 
Injuns was bad, so I bought a double-barrelled shot- 
gun for the boy. Everything went on all right till 
we'd got into the territory about one hundred miles 
from here. One mornin' we was movin' along, when 
a man rode up to me. He was a small-sized man, but 
the handsomest man I ever seed, an' dressed the 
handsomest. He had on high boots, big silver spurs, 
an' buckskin breeches, an' a buckskin huntin'-shirt 
all over fringes, an' open at the front. He had 
on a white biled shirt, an' a red silk necktie with 
long ends a flyin' behind. Around his waist was 
a red silk sash, an' he wore a regular Mexican 
sombrero, an' his bridle an' saddle was Mexican, 
an' covered with silver. He was on a splendid 
mustang that bucked an' shied all the time, but he 
rode him like his skin. I tell you, boys, it was a 
handsome outfit. Good mornin',' says he, a liftin' 
up his hat mighty polite. *Good mornin',' says I, 
an' with that we chatted along pleasant like. He told 
me that he had a big herd of cattle about three miles 


to the east, an' he was afraid I'd give 'em the fever, 
an' he wanted me to keep more to the left, off his 
range. Wall, I was agreeable, an' he kept with me 
for a mile an* more, showin' me where to go and then 
thankin' me polite, he said good-bye, an' rode off. 
Wall now, boys, I had kept on the course he told me 
for about two hours, when just beyant a little rise I 
drove right into my gentleman friend an' six other 
fellers. Ridin' right up to me, my friend says, says 
he, after thinkin' it over, I have concluded it would 
be a pity to lose such a extra fine lot of beef cattle as 
you have got, so I have concluded to take 'em in.' 
Wall, boys, I saw right through the thing in a minit 
I knowed it were no use to fight agin so many, so I 
begged. I told him how I was situate, that if I 
didn't get them cattle to the post I was ruinated. He 
listened for a few minutes pretty quiet, an' I thot I 
had got him, when all at once he drawed a pistol, an' 
all the other fellers drawed their pistols at the same 

"*My friend,' says he,  we don't take no advantage 
of cattle-men, but them cattle of yours is the same as 
Government property. They is going to feed soldiers. 
All such property is as much ours as anybody's, now 
you git' — and with that he stuck his cocked pistol in 
my face, an' all the other six stuck their cocked pis- 
tols at me. Wall, boys, me and that Mexican boy — 
we left. 

"Them fellers rounded up my cattle, an' drove 'em 
back ther own way. Boys, my heart was most 
broke. I knowed I was ruinated if I lost them cat- 
tle. Wall, we travelled along for a mile or more, 
when I made up my mind. * Domingo,' says I to the 
little Mexican, * are you afeared to stay and take 


care of the hosses, while I settle with them chaps?' 
No,' says he, an' Til help you ef you want me.' 

 The country was about half 4 prairie, an' t'other 
half the thickest kind of black jack, and scrub-oak 
thickets. I hid that boy an' them hosses wher a 
hound couldn't ev found 'em, and when it got towards 
evenin', I started on foot to hunt up my friends' cattle 
camp, an' as I knowed I had to get in my work in the 
dark an' at close range, I took the boy's double-bar- 
rel shot-gun, each barrel loaded with sixteen buck- 
shot, an' big size at that. 

" About midnight I found the herd. The cattle was 
held in a prairie with thickets all around it. I poked 
around, keepin' in the thickets. They had about a 
thousand head not countin' mine. I found ther * dug 
out.' Ther was two men on herd. I poked around 
till I found wher my cattle was. They knowed me, 
an didn't make no fuss when I went among 'em. 
Thar I laid down in the grass. In about an hour 
one of the herders rode right close on to me, an' I let 
him have one barrel. In a minit the other herder 
hollered out, *what the h — 1 is that,' an' gettin no 
answer he galloped right over ther, and I give him 
the other barrel. I got back to the thicket and went 
to my camp, an' to sleep. Next mornin' when the sun 
was way up, that boy he woke me, an' says, says he, 
* ther havin a high time in that camp, you had better 
be looking after 'em.' Wall, I got my breakfast an 
went to look after 'em. They wus in a big commo- 
tion, all of 'em together, huntin' everywhere for my 
trail. I had wored mocassins, an' I knowed none of 
'em fellows could follow my trail. I had another big 
advantage of 'em. They couldn't go nowhere unless 
they wus on hossback, and the brush wus so thick they 


had to ride in the open prairie whar I could see 'em. 
I poked round in the thicket wher they couldn't see 
me. Next night 1 tried it agin, but they wus all on 
herd and held the cattle out in the prairie so fur from 
the woods that I had no show. I changed my plan, an' 
went back to my camp. Next mornin' I was out early 
pokin' in the thickets and watchin\ A lot of cattle 
grazed up towards a pint of woods. I knowed they 
would stop that soon, so I hid in that pint. Pretty 
soon a feller came chargin' round on a full run after 
them cattle. He was a likely chap, an' 1 felt a little 
oneasy until I recognized him as having stuck a 
pistol in my face two days before. I got him. 

 Wall, boys, thar's no use in stringin' this thing 
out. Them chaps wus scared from the start, and 
would have got out of thar, if they hadn't had to go 
through thickets. I knowed that, an' took it easy. 
In three days I had gradually got away with them. 
They wus so few that they couldn't herd ther cattle. 
On the mornin' of the fourth day I noticed a lot of 
cattle feedin' off. They wus nigh two miles from the 
dug-out — I laid with 'em, but in the thicket. To- 
wards afternoon a feller came dashin' in at full speed 
an' rounded up within twenty feet of me. When he 
fell he was so tied up in his lariat that he stopped the 
hoss. I caught an' tied that hoss in a thicket, so that 
the others at the dug-out wouldn't know this man 
was dead. 

After the second day I had never seed my fine cap- 
tain. He had made the others take chances, but he 
had stayed in the dug-out, an' run no risk himself. 
I thought if I could get him I'd be all right. So, 
afore day next mornin' I hid in a break about twenty 
yards from the door of the dug-out, an just at day- 


break I covered that door with my shot-gun, an' fired 
off my pistol with the other hand. As I expected, he 
jumped out of the door with his gun in his hand, but 
he had no chance an' no time, I doubled him up right 
in the door. In a few minits a white rag was stuck 
out of the door on a stick. I called to the man to 
come out, and put up his hands, an' he did. I walked 
up an' said to him, I ought to kill you, but I won't if 
you will do as I tell yer. Get your hoss, cut out my 
cattle, and drive 'em over to that hill.  He said, says 
he, * I never saw you before, an' I don't know your 
cattle ; I am the cook of this outfit, an' I am the only 
man left.' So I made him get me a hoss, an' he an 
me cut out my cattle, an' drove 'em over near my 
camp, an' me an' the boy took 'em, and by hard drivin' 
got to the post in time. It were a tight fit, boys; an' 
now, what '11 yer have to drink."