[Logo of the Kansas Heritage Group - a sunflower,

The Greatest Game Country on Earth

OF course, it was not always fight and run, run and fight; we had our fun, too. One day a stage driver, Frank Harris, and myself started out after buffalo. They were very scarce, for a wonder, and we were very hungry for fresh meat. The day was fine, and we rode a long way, expecting sooner or later to rouse up a bunch. Late in the afternoon we gave it up, and started for home. Of course, we did not care to save our ammunition; so we shot away at everything in sight-skunks, rattlesnakes, prairie dogs, and so on-until we had only a few cart. ridges left. Suddenly up jumped an old bull that had been lying down in one of those sugar-loaf shaped sand hills, with the top hollowed out by the action of the wind.

Harris emptied his revolver into him, and so did I but the old fellow stood suddenly still on top of the sand hill bleeding profusely at the nose, but persistently refusing to die, although he would repeatedly stagger and nearly topple over. It was getting late, and we could not wait for him, so Harris said: "I will dismount, creep up behind him, and cut his hamstrings with my butcher knife," the bull by this time having laid down. Harris commenced his forward movement, but it seemed to infuse new life into the old fellow; he jumped to his feet, and, with his head down, away he went around the outside of the top of the sand hill. It was a perfect circus ring, and Harris, who had gotten him by the tail, never let go his hold; he did not dare; it was his only show. Harris was a tall, lank fellow, and his legs were flying higher than his head, as round and round he and the bull went. I could not help him in the least, but had to sit and hold his horse and judge the fight. I really thought that the old bull would never weaken. Harris said to me,


after it was over, that the only thing he feared was that he would pull the bull's tail out by the roots, and if he did he was a goner. Finally the ring performance began to grow slower and slower, and Harris at last succeeded in cutting his hamstrings, when down went the bull. We brought in his tongue, hump, and hindquarters, and, at a glorious feast that night, had a big laugh with the boys over Harris' comical adventure.

I wish here to assert a few facts concerning game, and animal life in general, in early days, in the vicinity of Fort Dodge and Dodge City. There were wonderful herds of buffalo, antelope, deer, elk, and wild horses.


There were big gray wolves and coyotes by the thousand, hundreds of the latter frequently being seen in bands, and often from ten to fifty grays in a bunch. There were also black and cinnamon bears, wild cats and mountain lions, though these latter were scarce and seldom seen so far from the mountains. Then there was the cunning little prairie dog-millions of them; and next in number to them was the little swift, similar to a fox in shape and color, but much prettier, and it could run like a streak, which gave it the name of swift. They were very susceptible to poison, and soon vanished from the face of the earth, as did the black croaking raven. I have seen the ground literally covered with dead ravens, for the space of an acre, around the carcasses of dead wolves that had been poisoned; having eaten of the flesh of the poisoned wolves, it affected the ravens the same as if they had eaten the poison direct.

One terror of the plains was mad wolves. Several times were the different forts visited by them, and they not only did great damage to stock, but frequently to human beings. One ran into Fort Larned one night, bit the officer of the day, Lieutenant Thompson, and two soldiers, and I think two or three employees of the government. Thompson went east and put himself under treatment, but he never was the same man afterward. It


is doubtful whether it was the treatment he underwent that affected him, or the continual dread. The others all died.

Now I wish to give an idea of the great number of water-fowl and amphibious animals, such as the otter, beaver, muskrat, weasel, and mink, that were found on the southwestern plains. Up to about '87 the beavers were plentiful, and there was also quite a number of otter; but neither of these animals could stand civilization, and both were soon wiped out of existence, on account of the high price of their fur, and too many trappers.

For some years after Dodge was established, our rivers, streams, ponds and lakes were covered with wild fowl-ducks, geese, swans, brants, pelicans, cranes and every species of water-fowl known to this continent. It was a poor day or a poor hunter who could not kill a hundred ducks and geese in a day, and sometimes several hundred were killed in a day, so one can judge by this how plentiful they were. Then turkeys and quails there was no end to them.

Their number were countless; one could not estimate them. Indeed, I am almost ashamed to state how many I have seen, but what I am going to say about their number is no exaggeration. I have seen thousands of turkeys in a flock, coming into roost on the North Fork and the main Canadian and its timbered branches. Several times, at a distance, we mistook them for large herds of buffalo. They literally covered the prairie for miles, with their immense flocks, and, more than once, we saddled our horses to make a run for them, thinking they were buffalo. If my recollection serves me right, about ninety miles down the North Fork of the Canadian from Fort Supply, is what is called, Sheridan's Roost, named for the large number of wild turkeys, killed in a single night, by Major-General Sheridan's escort, who made camp there one night. I had passed by the place before, and several times after the big killing, and I should think it was rightly named, for, in my trips


through that country, I thought I saw, with my own eyes, more wild turkeys than there were tame ones in the whole United States put together; and there were just as many quails in the sand hills, bordering on these streams.

I must not fail to mention, among our game birds, the pretty prairie plover, which, for about three months in the year, came in great numbers and dotted the prairie everywhere. It was a most beautiful game bird and considered by epicures to be very fine eating, superior to quail in flavor and juiciness. I have often gone out and killed from one hundred to two hundred, and back to Dodge, inside of four hours. It was beautiful sport. The bird would arise singly, when you approached it within forty or fifty yards, and sail gently away from you; and before you could reach your first dead bird, you would oftentimes have three or four more down. Army officers, and distinguished sportsmen and our governors and congressmen would come here to hunt them. But, like the wild turkey and other game, the prairie plover, too, has almost ceased to appear. Civilization or settlement of the country has sounded its death note.

I have spoken about the great number of wild animals, but have failed to mention the skunks. They, too, were very numerous, in the early days, at and around Dodge City, and, strange to say, their bite was almost always fatal. At least eight or ten persons died here from their bite, the first season Dodge started. We supposed they were mad skunks, or affected with hydrophobia. Everyone, of course, slept out of doors, and skunks would crawl right into bed with the men, and bite. Some were bitten on the nose, some on the lip, some on the hand or finger, and one man had his toe bitten almost off. One man who was bitten through the nose, had the skunk hold on to him, while he ran through the camp in the night, beating with both hands at Mr. Skunk and he had a time getting rid of the beast. The man whose toe was


bitten was George Oaks, partner, at the time, of our fellow townsman, Mr. George Richards. After he was bitten he determined to have revenge, so he camped his train (and he had quite a large mule train) and waited for, some say, four nights, before Mr. Skunk came back. Anyhow, he laid his train up for a day or two. But finally, one night, he blew Mr. Skunk's head off with a double-barreled shotgun, and, not satisfied emptying both barrels into his victim, reloaded and shot him again. He sure got his revenge. Some people were mean enough to say that Mr. Skunk would have died anyway, after biting Mr. Oaks, and that Mr. Skunk only came back to .apologize, after he found out whom he had bitten, but I think different; this was a joke, for George Oaks was my friend and a big hearted, noble fellow, even if a little eccentric, and some people could not appreciate him.

The creeks, when the Fort (Dodge) was first started, were all heavily wooded with hackberry, ash; box-elder, cottonwood, and elm. We cut fifteen hundred cords of wood almost in one body on a little creek six miles north of the fort, all hackberry. There were a good many thousand cords cut on the Sawlog, which stream is properly the south fork of the Pawnee, but the soldiers would go out to the old Hays crossing, chop down a big tree, hitch a string of large mules to it, haul it up on the bank near the ford, and, after stripping off its top and limbs, leave its huge trunk there. In consequence thousands of immense logs accumulated, making the place look as if a sawmill had been established; and these great trunks were sawlogs ready to be cut into lumber. The early buffalo hunters called the creek Sawlog, which name it bears to this day.

Just above the crossings was a great resort and covert for elk. I have seen as many as fifty in a single band at one time. Every spring we would go out there and capture young ones. That region was also the heart of the buffalo range as well as that of the antelope. I have seen


two thousand of the latter graceful animals in a single bunch driven right into Fort Dodge against the buildings by a storm. I have shot buffalo from the walls of my corral at the fort, and so many of them were there in sight it appeared impossible to count them. It was a difficult problem to determine just how many buffalo I saw at one time. I have traveled through a herd of them days and days, never out of sight of them; in fact, it might be correctly called one continuous gathering of the great shaggy monsters. I have been present at many a cattle round-up, and have seen ten thousand head in one herd and under complete control of their drivers; but I have seen herds of buffalo so immense in number that the vast aggregation of domestic cattle I have mentioned seemed as none at all compared with them.

In writing this brief description of animal life along the old trails, I have purposely left till the last the mention of the buffalo for it is the animal to which it is hardest to do justice. The southwestern plains, in early days, was the greatest country on earth, and the buffalo was the noblest as well as the most plentiful of its game animals.

I have indeed traveled through buffaloes along the Arkansas river for two hundred miles, almost one continuous herd, as close together as it is customary to herd cattle. You might go north or south as far as you pleased and there would seem no diminuation of their numbers.

When they were suddenly frightened and stampeded they made a roar like thunder and the ground seemed to tremble. When, after nightfall, they came to the river, particularly when it was in flood, their immense numbers, in their headlong plunge, would make you think, by the thunderous noise, that they had dashed all the water from the river. They often went without water one and two days in summer, and much longer in winter. No one had any idea of their number.

General Sheridan and Major Inman were occupying my office at Fort Dodge one night, having just made the


trip from Fort Supply, and called me in to consult as to how many buffaloes there were between Dodge and Supply. Taking a strip fifty miles east and fifty miles west, they had first made it ten billion. General Sheridan said, "That won't do." They figured it again, and made it one billion. Finally they reached the conclusion that there must be one hundred million; but said they were afraid to give out these figures; nevertheless they believed them. This vast herd moved slowly toward the north when spring opened, and moved steadily back again from the far north when the days began to grow short and winter was setting in.

Horace Greeley estimated the number of buffaloes at five million. I agree with him, only I think there were nearly five times that number. Mr. Greeley passed through them twice; I lived in the heart of the buffalo range for nearly fifteen years; now who do you think would be the best judge of their number? I am told that some recent writer who has studied the buffalo closely, has placed their number at ninety millions, and I think that he is nearer right than 1. Brick Bond, a resident of Dodge, an old, experienced hunter, a great shot, a man of considerable intelligence and judgment, and a most reliable man as to truthfulness and honesty says that he killed fifteen hundred buffaloes in seven days, and his highest killing was two hundred and fifty in one day, and he had to be on the lookout for hostile Indians all the time. He had fifteen skinners, and he was only one of many hunters.

Charles Rath and I shipped over two hundred thousand buffalo hides the first winter the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe railroad reached Dodge City, and I think there were at least as many more shipped from there, besides two hundred cars of hind quarters and two cars of buffalo tongues. Often have I shot them from the walls of my corral, for my hogs to feed upon. Several times have I seen wagon trains stop to let the immense herds pass;


and time and time again, along in August or September, when putting up hay in the Arkansas, bottom, would we have to put out men, both night and day, to keep them out of our herd of work cattle. We usually hunted them on horseback; that is, we would single out one animal in a herd, and ride along by the side of it, and shoot it with a six-shooter. Sometimes we would kill several buffalo on a single run, but very few white men killed them wantonly.

There was great antipathy between the hunters and the Indians; they cordially hated each other. This hatred between them was greatly on account of their different manner of killing the buffalo. The Indian hunted the buffalo altogether on horseback, with bow and arrow, or else with a long spear or lance, which they planted in the side of the animal by riding up alongside of him. By either means, they had to ride up close to the buffalo, scattering the herd and running them out of the country or off the range entirely. The Indians claimed they only killed for meat or robes, and, as soon as they had sufficient, they stopped and went home, the herds of buffalo soon getting together again and recovering from their panic. Whereas the hunters never knew when to quit or when he had enough, and was continually harassing the buffaloes from every side, never giving them a chance to recover, but keeping up a continual pop-pop from their big guns. The Indians further claimed that the hunters' mode of killing was not only unfair, but it was cowardly, and downright murder, pure and simple, for they did not give the buffaloes the ghost of a show for their lives. They would get a stand on a herd by shooting the leader, at the great distance of a mile, clear out of scent and sound of the gun, and almost out of sight, and in a short time, would annihilate the entire bunch, whilst the bewildered animals would wander around, taking their deaths, ignorant of what was the source of danger or how to get away.


Besides, many of them, wounded, would

wander off, out of sight and reach, and were not found until they were unfit for market; and the Indians claimed that the noise of the hunters' guns and their mode of killing would soon drive the buffalo out of the country or annihilate them. Time has proved that the Indians were correct.

A band of hunters cared no more for Indians than Indians did for foot soldiers, and, unless they greatly outnumbered the hunters, and then only under the most favorable circumstances, the Indians would not attack the hunters. They were afraid of the hunter's big guns, his cool bravery, and, last but not least, of his unerring, deadly aim. Then, too, the hunter had but little plunder that was dear to the Indian, after the fight was won only a team of work horses, and the redskin cared much more for riding ponies than for work animals.

I want to say something of the buffalo and its habits.

The buffalo-wallow is caused by the buffalo pawing and licking the salty alkali earth, and when the sod is once broken the dirt is wafted away by the action of the wind; then, year after year, by more pawing and licking and rolling or wallowing by the animals, more wind wafts the loose dirt away, and soon there is a large hole in the prairie. Now there is a much more curious spectacle to be seen every year when the grass starts up; is even plainly to be seen yet when springtime arrives. These are rings on the prairie; and there are thousands of them-yes, millions. From the first of April and until the middle of May was our wet season on the plains; this was always the case; you could depend upon it with almost the certainty of the sun and moon rising at the proper time.

This was the calving season of the buffalo; the buffalo, not like domestic cattle, only rutted one month, neither more nor less, then it was all over. I want to interpolate a statement here, that no man living I ever heard of or saw witnessed the act of copulation by the buffalo. it was


all done after night. Then was the only time that the buffalo made any noise or fuss; but at this season they would keep up a low roaring sound all night, and, as a consequence, the cows all calved in a month. At that time there were a great many gray wolves in the country as well as the little coyote. While the cows were in labor, the bulls kept guard to drive off the wolves, and, in their beat, made the rings referred to. I have had people argue to me that they were caused by lightning striking the earth; but it is certainly strange that lightning should only strike at these breeding places and nowhere else. Others would argue that the Indians had their war dances there, which is just about as absurd a statement as the other;

Others even say that two bulls get their heads together in battle and push each other round and round in a ring until a circle is formed. Buffaloes live to a great age. I have heard it from best authority that some of them live to be seventy-five or eighty years old, and it is quite common for them to live thirty or forty years; in fact, I think I have seen many a bull's head that I thought to be over thirty years old. After a storm, when we would go in search of our lost cattle, we could tell the buffalo tracks from our cattle tracks because the buffalo tracks would be going against the storm every time, while our domestic cattle would invariably go with it. You see the buffalo is much more thinly clad behind than in front; nearly all of his coat is on his head, shoulders and hump, and, when our cattle would turn tail, the buffalo would naturally face the storm.

In another paragraph, mention has been made of the terrific noise and quaking of ground, resulting from a stampeding herd of buffaloes. I will now remind the reader of my exciting adventure with buffaloes, referred to in another chapter, and which I promised to relate. It will be remembered that, after a forced march in flight from Indians, I was allowing my horse and cattle to rest and graze a few hours, before proceeding on our way to


the ranch at Aubrey. While waiting for the animals, and for greater safety to myself away from them, I ascended a dry sand creek a couple of miles, where the banks rose very steeply to the height of eighteen or twenty feet, and were sharply cut up by the narrow trails made by the buffalo.

The whole face of the earth was covered with buffalo; they were grazing slowly toward the river. As it was a warm day, and getting on in the afternoon, all at once they became frightened at something and stampeded pell mell toward the very spot where I was. I quickly ran into one of the precipitous little paths and up on the prairie to see what had scared them. They were fairly making the ground tremble, as in their mighty multitude they came on running at full speed; the sound of their hoofs resembled thunder, only a continuous peal. It appeared to me that they must sweep everything in their path, and for my own preservation I ran under the banks; but on they came like a tornado, with one old bull in the lead. He held up a second to descend the deep, narrow trail, and when he got half way down the bank I let him have it-I was only a few steps from him-and over he tumbled. I don't know why I killed him-out of pure wantonness, I expect; or perhaps I thought it would frighten the others back; not so, however; they only quickened their pace over the dead bull, and others fell over them.

The top of the bank was actually swarming with them; they leaped, pitched and rolled down. I crouched as close to the bank as possible, but numbers of them just grazed my head, knocking the sand and gravel in great streams down my neck; indeed, I was half buried before the last one had passed. The old bull was the last buffalo I ever shot wantonly, excepting once from an ambulance, to please a distinguished Englishman who had never seen one killed. Then I did it only after his hard persuasion.

Jack Bridges, a scout of some fame in eastern Kansas during the war, said to me one day: "I see you always


hunt buffaloes on horseback. If you will take a needle gun (that was an improved Springfield) and go with me, you will never hunt on horseback again." And I never did. We usually hunted the calves only in the fall and winter, as all we cared for was the meat. It was wonderful to see how strong the mother's instinct was to protect her young. The calf would invariably run on the opposite side of its mother. One day I had taken a knee rest, and waited and waited for the calf to run ahead of its mother as they ascended a hill together. At last I saw a dark spot just ahead of the cow's breast and fired, killing both cow and calf, breaking the cow's neck as he had it distended ascending the hill, and shooting the calf dead, as I supposed. Just then a soldier came along and asked permission to have their tongues. We told him yes. On coming back with a wagon, picking up the dead calves, we found this one gone. Bridges said to me: "See, the d- soldier has stolen the calf." We saw the soldier soon after coming to us. He said: "After I cut the tongue out of the calf, he got up and ran over the hill a quarter of a mile." Sure enough, there he lay dead, with his tongue cut out.

Two other soldiers verified this one's story.

Notwithstanding this abundance of game and the general pursuit of it, for a white man to go south of the Arkansas River to hunt was considered suicidal until after '87 . The south side of the Arkansas was considered sacred to the Indians, or at least this was their view of it, and no one ventured across the Arkansas except the old traders, unless under a good escort of soldiers. The more daring of the hunters would take desperate chances to hunt pelts and furs in winter, south of the river, but they were very few, and some of them never returned, and they would go singly, never more than two together. It was considered an unknown quantity, and so it was. Rich in furs and pelts, game everywhere, no wonder it was watched by the Indians with such jealous care. With longing eyes the daring hunters would gaze across; it was


forbidden fruit, and their curiosity and hankering would be increased all the more for this reason. Curly Walker and Jack Pratt were two who ventured down into that country every winter, sometimes in partnership, but most generally alone, with a strong light wagon, two good draft horses, and a good and tried saddler. [Another view of Dodge City in 1879. This appears to be some of the buildings further along Front Street. They are, for the most part, less substantial than those in the view facing page 48, and lack the raised walk to accommodate teams and wagons. ] They always returned loaded to the brim with the richest furs, beaver, otter, big grey wolves, and sometimes a silver fox. The little coyote was too insignificant, and only caught to make up the load. These men made their headquarters at Dodge. They traded with the writer, and I seldom paid them less than six dollars apiece for their grey wolf skins, and their load never netted them less than a thousand dollars and sometimes double that amount.

A game animal of the utmost practical value was the wild horse, which was hunted in a manner very different from that in which other game was hunted, and which was attended by peculiar difficulties and dangers. In the summer of 1878, Mr. J. T. Elliott, of Dodge City, in company with L. M. Henderson and F. C. Foxworthy, started in pursuit of wild horses. An account of their experience, as related at the time, runs as follows:

"They struck a band of about two hundred head of the finest wild horses they ever saw. After following them on horseback and afoot for nine days and nights, they finally succeeded in corralling forty-eight head. They were thirty-six hours without water, and came near perishing for want of it. Finally the herd struck the Arkansas River, just at the time when they were ready to give up further pursuit, as they felt they could go no farther and must surely perish for want of water. New courage overtook them, however, and they stuck to their little band until the river was reached. They are holding these horses at Lakin. Mr. Elliott was in Dodge a few days ago, purchasing supplies for another trip after wild horses." Wild horses were numerous on the plains. These


horses were the progeny of abandoned horses by plainsmen, and they were harmful to range stock. The capture of the stallions was necessary, so as to corral and capture the mare herds. The increase of the wild bands was made, yearly, by the escape of horses from the stock herds. The wild stallions could not be secured by a cowboy on horse-back. A winter's campaign was necessary to accomplish the capture of the wild horses. The stallions were shot, by getting in close range by the cowboy, from time to time, and the mares were secured alive.

A horse belonging to a cattleman by the name of E.

Clemence, was being saddled with a cowman's saddle, made by R. E. Rice, when it broke away from its owner, and was not seen until two years afterwards, when it was discovered with a drove of wild horses, the saddle still being in proper position on the back of the horse. The owner never recovered the animal.

Among the many things that young Dodge City took great pride in and excelled in, was one pertaining to her great game resources and the chase, and that was her dogs. They were known far and wide; everyone was singing the praises of Dodge City's dogs, and justly, too, for they were the best bred of the kind in the world. I mean the pure-bred greyhound, and there were several large packs of these hounds. I expect the greatest pack and the largest was one owned by Mayor James H. Kelly* , and, for that reason the "gang" christened him "Dog" Kelly. .

The first winter of Dodge's existence there came a deep snow, the latter part of November, which drove the antelope off the hills into the river bottom, where they bunched up by the thousands. Kelly started out, the morning after the storm, with a lot of sports and a big pack of greyhounds, and just a half mile west of Dodge they struck a big band of antelope, and the dogs soon caught all they could carry home. The snow was deep and the morning turned out to be very warm. They


were all true sports and did not wish to kill for useless slaughter, and the dogs were warm and tired, so they called them off and started back to town. When they got in, Kelly missed a favorite hound by the name of Jim, only a pup six months old, but a monster. He was extraordinarily large for his age, big boned and well muscled, and gave promise of making a fine animal when he got of age. So back went Kelly after Jim-dog. A mile or two from where they quit the hunt, he found a dead antelope;

a few miles farther along the Santa Fe trail, he found another; and on he went, finding dead antelope until he got to the foot of Nine-mile Ridge, twenty miles west of Dodge City. There he -found Jim-dog lying by the side of his last kill. I know Kelly told me there were at least a dozen antelope killed by this same dog in the twenty-mile run. You see, the old Santa Fe trail ran along the river, and the wind had swept the snow, to a great measure, out of the trail, and the herd of antelope they started that morning kept the trail because it was easier traveling for them. The dog kept after them, and when he would kill one, would leave it and go after the others, until he was completely used up and worn out. Kelly brought him home in front of his saddle, and no money could buy Jim after this exploit.

Many times afterwards, when the dog got age, and they would be on a hunt twenty or thirty miles away, the other dogs would all quit and the hunters return home, when Jim-dog would be missing, sometimes it would be two or three days before his return, and he would eventually stagger in all tired out, as lank as a shad, and it would be days before he would notice anything but water and food, he would be so completely done up and worn out. We would kid Kelly by saying, "Jim has quit." "Not until the antelope does," would be his reply.

In this connection, a story entitled, "A Race to Death," clipped from the "Dodge City Times," of Sep


tember 15, 1877, is of decided interest. It seems there was. great rivalry between Lieutenant Gardener, of Fort Dodge, and Mr. James Kelly, as to who had the best pack of hounds. The story continues:

"The dogs of both of these gentlemen are known to be the best in the land and were eager for the contest, so they made up a race, which, from its tragic termination, will not soon be forgotten. On the morning of the 14th, together with a large party of friends and sports, they crossed the Arkansas four miles from Dodge, in the lower hills that skirt the river, and started two fine antelope.

Then followed a race after the flying dogs and antelope, that for excitement and reckless enjoyment makes the finest sport in the world. The antelope, clearing away over the prairie with flying feet, almost seemed for awhile to outdo the sleek graceful hounds, who, with ears laid low and tails straight out and active muscles, dashed after the beautiful fugitives. It was a beautiful sight, the antelope, the hounds, and the huntsmen. A mile and a half of breakneck speed told the story, and just as that wonder of modern speed and ugliness, Yclept, Old Calamity (this was the name of a famous hunter), carried this dep,onent over the brow of a hill, the hounds brought the tired creatures to the ground. It was a victory dearly won, and the dead antelope were soon to be followed by their captors, in a chase through animal paradise.

"The last of the huntsmen had hardly reached the finish when it became apparent that the faithful dogs had given their lives for the game. Unable to stand, they were taken upon the saddles before the hunters and hurriedly carried toward the river, three miles away. Poor Fly, a most beautiful animal, never reached the water. The others were taken to the river, bled, and rubbed, but to no purpose. Rowdy soon followed Fly, and, to close the scene, Kate, an elegant imported hound of Lieutenant Gardener -both animals, for grace, beauty and speed, probably have no peers in western Kansas-paid the debt of nature.


The best dogs die first, and the latter two were very king and queen. It is not everybody that enjoys this kind of sport, but, once a participant, there are but few who will not admire the graceful animals, and, after so noble an effort, be sorry to see them die." The loss of dogs was great in hot weather hunts. Kelly never sold a dog but would occasionally give one away to a dear friend, and, when parties would come to Dodge and bring their dogs for a grand hunt, Kelly would often buy one, no matter what the price. He paid one hundred dollars for a dog, and often fifty dollars, and I have known him to pay two hundred dollars when he saw an extra good one. A few days after the race, Lieutenant Gardener lost two more of his dogs. One was his favorite hound, Omar, who died of congestion of the lungs, brought about by\ the last day's sport. Omar had an unblemished pedigree. I could mention a great many more exciting races if I had the space.


want no more." Instead of the fatted calf we cooked them several camp kettles full of bacon and beans, many of the same full of coffee, two gallons of black molasses, plenty of sugar, and a box of hardtack. They feasted, and went on their way rejoicing.

The ultimate fate of the old ranch was, that the Indians burnt it, together with several tons of hay, the day after Mr. Anthony abandoned it, by order of Major Douglas, commanding Fort Dodge.


[*Kelley is correct spelling, but even the Kelly Opera House was without the 'e']


Preface Introduction 01 02 03 04 05 06 07
08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 Appendix Home Ford County History KS Heritage Kansas History Dodge City History Old West Kansas American West
Lawrence, Kansas,