Page images
[blocks in formation]

Scenic Line of the World.





On the line of the Denver & Rio Grande R. R.

W. B. COBB, Gen'l East'n Agent, 317 BROADWAY, N. Y.



S. T. SMITH, General Manager,

TRAVERSING the Switzerland of America, the scenery along its route being universally acknowledged as the grandest, most varied, and most beautiful on the continent.

"AROUND THE CIRCLE," a grand summer tour from Denver, Colorado Springs, Manitou, or Pueblo, has been arranged, being a trip "Around the Circle" of one thousand miles through the Rocky Mountains, comprising more noted and magnificent scenery than is compassed in any other thousand miles of travel in the known world. Fare for round trip, $28.

This is the only line from the window of whose cars the traveler can see the wonderful "GARDEN OF THE GODS," PIKE'S PEAK," the "ROYAL GORGE," "GRAND CANYON," the "COLLEGIATE RANGE," "MARSHALL PASS," where the road crosses the Continental Divide at an elevation of 11.000 feet above the sea, the "BLACK CANYON," "CASTLE GATE," "PRICE RIVER CANYON," and a thousand objects of scenic beauty and worldwide fame.

For full information and for elegantly illustrated books, "Manitou," "Rhymes of the Rockies," "Tourist Hand-Book," and "Around the Circle," call on or address:

S.K. HOOPER, Gen'l Pass'r Ag't,


A. S. HUGHES, Traffic Manager.

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]



No. 1.

THE cattle kings of Colorado continue to congregate in Denver. The princes and potentates, the dukes and earls, assemble upon the streets, at the hotels, in the banks, and now and then, possibly, in a bar-room to take counsel, compare notes, and prepare for the incoming of Spring. The gray sobmrero flaunts its broad brim in every street, while the cowboy wanders here and there to take in all there is of life for him in the gay city; while in the evening you may see him now and then wending his way to some place of amusement in order to get rid of the monotony which has followed his path in his far-away ranch. The cattle men take their pleasure with their profits; they want all they are entitled to. The weary days and months of constant care upon the plains is given renewed impulse or hope of future profit, when the steers kick up their heels with joy, as they

gather at night-fall with a diaphragm well filled with the tender grass of the verdant plains.

Few people, outside of the bounds. of Colorado, are familiar with the methods by which the cattle men are united in order to protect their interests in the line of their profession. Not many years back, there was a summary method adopted by the moral and religious portion of this community, whereby the horse and cattle thief was disposed of at comparative inexpensive cost. When that careless individual was discovered steering a steer into the wrong path, there was a speedy reproof administered, usually beneath the shadows of a cottonwood tree. But as the cottonwoods were scarce upon the plains, the ingenuity of man was brought to the invention of methods. equally as effective in correcting the indiscretion and waywardness of the

men who do not respect the brand that marks the animals they had in charge.


The cattle men have reason thank the evolution that has brought around a more humane method of dealing with matters so closely allied to their interests. Through the courtesy of Mr. Fred. Zell, I am enabled to gather a little inside information regarding the workings of "The Cattle Grower's Association of Colorado," of which he is the secretary.

The Cattle Grower's Association of Colorado, was organized in 1872, and up to this time makes a show of usefulness most gratifying to its members. The comprehensive declaration of the objects of the association, can be easily gathered from the following clause of the constitution :

"SECTION 2. The object of this association is to advance the interests of the cattle and horse growers, and dealers, within the said State, and protection of the same against frauds and swindlers, and to prevent the stealing, taking and driving away stock bearing the brands of the members of this association, and enforce the stock laws of Colorado."

Every carload of cattle passing in or out of Denver, or any of the shipping points east, south, north, or west, has to undergo inspection in behalf of this association, and any animal found not belonging to the party in charge of the drove is at once detached, and the value of the animal is at once forwarded, by bank

check, to the owner, who may not know that any portion of his herd has gone astray; and, in many instances, a cattle raiser has received the value of several steers that he was pleased to have so readily and cheaply marketed. It is remarkable to hear that so many young cattle wander so far from their home ranch. Colorado cattle having comfortable homes within the bounds of this central State, have wandered to the far north as far as Montana and to the south into New Mexico; yet, through the efficient management of this association, are promptly returned to the proper owners, either in their proper person or their value; and all this is done in consequence of the system of brands, coupled with the efficiency of this association.

There is a close alliance between the State and this association, whereby the interests of the "grower" is protected by stringent laws, which reach beyond the mere punishing of the guilty culprit who would dare steal a mule, or even a helpless calf. We can hardly realize the efficiency. of an association that would have detectives by every train loaded with cattle that would be so well skilled in hieroglyphics, that they would tally off a couple of hundred steers, and tell to whom each animal originally belongs; and, if a reasonable excuse for a stray sheep or shoat, horse or heifer, could not be given, to confiscate it at once for the benefit of the suppostitious owner; and if the own

er is never found, the value escheats to the State for the benefit of parties interested in the growth of four legged animals.

The vast plains which reach to the East are almost an unbroken pasture ground for these dumb animals; and God and nature intends they shall be used when occasion calls them in use. I was a little interested to find how an animal could find food from those plains when no hay was husbanded, and no corn in the bin; but the people tell me that food is found enough to keep every one fat, (if they have already attained that condition), for a month or more together.

The great saving to the "grower" on these plains, is in not being required to harvest a winter's supply of hay, and as corn is rather scarce, that article must be added when the neighborhood of the great Eastern markets are reached.

an individual to contest before the courts a just claim for such loss of property. property. To-day there need be not the least cause for the intervention of the courts to adjust a claim when a car kills a cow. The value or damage is adjusted in advance, at least the parties have consented to the adjustment, and future fees to an attorney are beyond the reach of the ambitious pettifoger.

It is a little wonderful how these inspectors of droves of cattle can at once detect a stray animal not belonging to the herd. The State has published an immense volume, giving ten thousand or more registered brands, and counterfeiting these brands is punished with a heavy penalty. An interesting book it is, and at first would be mistaken by an uneducated tender-foot, to be either a Hebrew, Greek, Chinese, Sanscrit, Choctaw, or Arapahoe volume, intended for the Columbia Exposition.

While these vast herds range over the plains, it could not be otherwise than that many would become injured or killed by railway cars that are becoming a net-work wherever the eye can reach. It was easy enough to harmonize conflicting interests when each appear willing to compromise upon an equitable basis. Constant litigation between parties when frequent occasion compelled it, had become an annoyance that needed a judicious regulation. The railroads were willing, and the cattle growers were more so, because it became a perplexing necessity many times, for

Last year, 207,226 cattle underwent the inspection required by this combination, among which, 2,551 were astray or stolen, while fully seven-eighths were either returned to their proper owners, or their value at once forwarded to them. The Secretary's report says: "The small owner is benefitted more than the large one, and the steer that wanders (or is stolen) from the Arkansas river to north of the Platte, returns to its owner in the form of a check when he leasts expects it. I believe it would be good policy for every shipper to

send off all the unknown cattle on his range, thus saving it to that extent, remove the temptation that will always exist in man, and thus enable the owner to get its full value, as attested by his account of sales."

We can readily see that these progressive methods, not only for the benefit of cattle as well as men, have a tendency to make men honest when cattle are spread over a thousand hills, and more than one person owns them.

The possibilities of these vast plains and mountains cannot well be estimated. The buffalo, the antelope and the elk, have become nearly extinct; they had a wide range in the past, and helped to supply the native red men with ample food for subsistence; the herbage was ample for these wild animals, and their flesh and peltries were just what the natives needed. How changed the outlook to-day! The plains and mountains are here, but where will we find the roving inhabitants that made. their homes all over this vast domain? Much like an uncontrolled avalanche, white men have swept down upon these prairies and mountains, and held things at their own sweet will; it has become a new world, and new laws govern in spite of all precedent.

"Lo! the poor Indian," we have our hopes for his future, while our fears are mingled into mountains of doubt respecting the proper course for white men to adopt if we are to

come in close contact with them. Their fate is a problem unsolved-it is a condition which faces this people—but this is a matter not germane to the present purpose. In spite of all that may perplex the national councils, these vast fields are doomed to become utilized for the benefit of the people who still live and are here. If there be a divinity which shapes our ends, there is a humanity not far back of it that helps to do the work. We can only look at things as they are, not as they should be; the necessities of the hour are what we are to provide for to-day.

A man from Boston once said to me: "If a person wants to choose a business by which he is most likely to succeed, he had better follow one by which he can get a lick at everyone-deal in something which everyone wants." Pretty much every one in that land of the free and home of the ox have been brought up to respect and desire, now and then, a tender roast of beef. If there have been those who had a prejudice adverse to mutton, it has been lessening in the light of modern improvements and breed since the days of Laban and the Prophets.

Right here, let me take an extract from an ancient book, owned by E. A. Kent, of Denver, entitled, "Chorography and History of America," printed in London, 1663, by Peter Heylyn. Just in that part of this ancient history, the author is treating of matters covering the very territory

« PreviousContinue »