Santa Fe New Mexican
Sante Fe New Mexico Feb 8 1900
To Grab the Staked Plains.
“Buffalo Jones” of Kansas long ago achieved fame as the grower of buffalo upon his farm in the sunflower state, and for his theory that by a cross between the bison and the domestic cattle he could produce a hardy animal which would combine the qualities of both. But the latest scheme of the Kansas man should entitle him to rank as the great practical joker of the wide west. He conceived a plan for grabbing the staked plains in New Mexico, ostensibly for a buffalo farm, and has hypnotized or buffaloed Representative Lacey of Iowa into introducing a bill in congress to lease to him, free of charge for twenty years, about all the public domain bounded by the Texas line on the east and south and extending to the Pecos river or the bills east of it into Chaves and Eddy counties. A line run westward from the north extremity of the proposed buffalo preserve; would reach to Roswell in a direct line, some seventy miles, but the buffalo promoter does not ask to have the line go more than fifty miles in that direction. It then makes an angle and goes southward thirty miles, where by a second angle it is carried west fifteen miles, and thence south to within slight of the waters of the great irrigation reservoirs seven and eighteen; miles; above Carlsbad. Then to keep his buffalo from being rounded-up by the poundkeeper at Carlsbad, Jonesy turns his pasture line eastward again a score of miles, and then runs it due south to Texas, thirty miles below Carlsbad.
The preserve would include over half of Eddy county, and about a quarter of Chaves county, and cover about 4,000,000 acres of land. Of course, there are already a few ranches in that area, but if the range were fenced in the homesteaders would have to move on, like Hungry Joe. The strip would have a length of 100 miles and an average width of sixty miles.
There is a tradition that in early days the buffalo herds trailed up the east side of the Pecos river, but were never known to cross that stream, even when they drank from it. Perhaps it is due to that early story concerning the habit of the bison that their champion did not ask congress to give elbow room clear over to the Rio Grande. A condition imposed upon the buffalo breeder for the monopoly of this tract of land for twenty years is that he, his heirs or assigns, shall place upon this domain “suitable inclosures” and not less than 100 bison.
In the magnanimity of the Kansan he proposes to give the government one pair of bison annually for parks, and at the end of twenty years let the government keep all the increase, the promoter taking but 100 animals. But Uncle Sam is to be charged with the duty of keeping cowboys from potting the animals.
Of course, no one should hint that the buffalo champion was furnished with data by a Texas cattle syndicate in order to correctly set out the metes and bounds of the preserve, as shown in the copy of the bill printed upon this page Nor can it be successfully charged, perhaps, that Jones and his assigns would make the “suitable inclosures” cover all the good pasture and run cattle as well as bison upon the lands, though there is no restriction in the bill. Of course, 4,000,000 acres is not a very big tract upon which to put 100 bison, but If the tract proved illy adapted to this purpose, it could very easily be made to serve as a calf corral for the Loving cattle trust that has taken options on 25,000,000 acres of adjoining lands in Texas and New Mexico, so the buffalo propagator, having nothing to pay to Uncle Sam, could scarcely lose money on the goods.
The Prince George’s Enquirer and Southern Maryland Advertiser. LOC
Upper Marlborough, Md February 9, 1900
Passing of the Bison.
One of the most extraordinary events that has characterized the last half of the present century is the extermination, the wiping out, of the American bison. There is little use in resorting to invective or endeavoring to stigmatize those who are guilty of this crime, but it would be well if the acts could be held up in a bright light, that those who committed them might be excoriated in the time to come, when a few bones and pictures will alone tell the story of a mighty race swept from the face of the earth by the civilized people of the nineteenth century. ln 1870, and later,” said an army officer to the writer, “the plains were alive with bison, and in crossing at places I had difficulty in avoiding them, so vast were the herds. If any one had told me then that in twenty or thirty years they would have become almost entirely extinct, I should have regarded the statement as that of an insane person.” That so many of these animals could have been killed in mere wantonness seems incredible when their vast numbers are realized. We first hear of the bison from Cortez and his followers in 1521. Montezuma had one in a zoological garden, the specimen, in all probability, having been caught in Coahuila. In 1530 Cabeza saw them in Texas, and 1542 Coronado found a herd in what is now the Indian Territory; one of his officers described them as horrible beasts that demoralized the horses. In 1612 Sir Samuel Argoll observed herds of bison near the national capital, and, in all probability, 287 years ago herds of bison grazed on the site of the Capitol building at Washington. In 1678 Father Hennepin observed them in what is now Northern Illinois, and in October 1720, Col. W. Bird saw herds in North Carolina and Virginia.
These and other facts have provided data by which the early geographical distribution of the bison has been determined, and it is known that this grand animal, that is to-day represented by a few individuals, formerly ranged in millions from the Atlantic seaboard to the Gulf of Mexico, from Texas to the Great Slave Lake, and as far west as Central Nevada. As to their numbers, they were like the sands of the seashore, and the accounts given by those who limited them twenty or thirty years ago to-day seem like vagaries sofa disordered imagination. Mr. Hornaday, who has hunted in South and Central Africa, where game is remarkable plentiful, states that the bison of this country previous to 1870 exceeded, in all probability, all the African game of every kind. An army officer in service on the plains in 1867 stated to the writer that on one occasion he was surrounded by buffaloes, and that from the top of a small hill he could see nothing but a black mass of their bodies. It was impossible to estimate their numbers, and the, party were in great fear lest they should be caught in a stampede, the rush being irresistible. Col. Dodge, in his memoirs, states that on one occasion he rode twenty five miles in Arkansas, always being in a herd of buffaloes, or many small herds, with but a small separating strip between them. The animals paid but little attention to him, merely moving slowly out of the way or advancing, bringing the whole herd of thousands down on him with the roar of an avalanche. This he met by standing fast and firing when they came in short range, the shot causing them to divide. In one day Col Dodge killed twenty-six bison from his wagon; not in sport, but as a protection. Otherwise they would have run him down and crushed man, horse and wagon.
This herd observed by Col. Dodge was later found to be fifty miles wide and to occupy five days in passing a given point on its way north. From a high rock, from which points ten miles distant could be seen in every direction, the earth seemed to be covered with bison. To make an accurate estimate of the numbers seen would be impossible. but Mr. Hornaday, by a conservative calculation, estimates that Col. Dodge must have seen four hundred and eighty thousand, and that the herd comprised half a million buffaloes. A train on the Kansas Pacific road in that State in 1868 passed between the towns of Elsworth and Sheridan—120 miles—through a continuous herd of buffaloes. They were packed so that the earth was black, and more than once the train was stopped, the surging masses becoming a menace to human safety.
“You cannot believe the facts as they existed in the days of 1871-72, said an army officer. “I was at that time on duty in the pay department, which made it necessary for me to travel on the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe railroad. One day the train entered a large herd, which scattered and seemed to go wild at the shrieking of the whistle and the ringing of the bell. As we went on the thicker they became, until the very earth appeared to be a rolling mass of humps so far as we could see. Suddenly some of the animals nearest us turned and charged; others fell in behind, and down on us they came like an avalanche. The engineer stopped the engine, let off steam and whistled to stop them, while we fired from the platforms and windows with rifles and revolvers, but It was like trying to stay a tidal wave. We stood in the centre of the car to await the crash, some of the men going to the rear. On they came, the earth trembling, and plunged heads down into us. Some were wedged in between the cars, others beneath; and so great was the crush that they toppled three cars over and actually scrambled over them, one buffalo becoming bogged by having his legs caught in the window. Such accidents occurred several times, and twice in one week were trains derailed by charging buffaloes, whose numbers it was impossible to compute.
Hunters have heard the roaring of buffaloes at a distance of from three to five miles, and that the earth trembled when they charged we can well imagine when the large bulls are known to weigh 2,000 pounds, the cows 1,200 pounds. The question of interest today is, how was it possible to destroy so many animals in so short a lime and what methods were employed? The natural fatalities were few compared to the enormous numbers. The cow bison displays little affection for her young, and many calves were lost every year; but, all in all, the conditions were extremely favorable to them, and their increase was enormous. Many were destroyed by stampeding over precipices. In 1867 2,000 buffaloes, or half a herd, became entangled in the quicksands of the Platte river. At another time a herd was lost by breaking through the ice of Lac Qui Parle, in Minnesota. The cold winters sometimes killed many that remained in the far North; but these dangers were as nothing compared to man. Man soon found that the buffaloes had a value. The Indians slaughtered them by the thousand for their skins, bone and for food; they killed 100 often times to secure five, and waste and prodigality were the rule. Yet so vast were their numbers that doubtless the Indian inroads upon them had little effect, so far as extermination is concern. But with the white man it was different. Some wished to make records, and killed for sport; some became professional buffalo butchers, to provide the gangs of railroad men with meat, slaughtering a magnificent animal for its tongue alone. It has been estimated that previous to 1870 nearly three-quarters of a million buffaloes could have been killed yearly and the herd kept intact; how many were killed and wasted will never be known. Each animal, however, had a value at this time estimated by Hornaday at $5; the robe $2.50; the tongue 25 cents; hindquarter $2; bones, horn and hoofs, 25 cents; and this was sufficient to attract an army of destroyers. The hides were the greatest feature, and one firm in New York between 1876 and 1884 paid the killers nearly $1,000,000, or, to be exact. $923.070 for the robes and hides, which represents the final extinction of the animal. The Government never interfered, owing to protests of interested legislators and the neglect of higher officials. Another firm paid $216,000 for robes and skins, and there were scores of private traders in the field. The word went out to kill everything in sight, and from 1876 there was a price on the head of every buffalo.
It is a dark and disagreeable subject to probe, but it is interesting to note some of the methods of these national calamity makers. A band of half-breeds in two hunts, according to Ross, killed 47,770 buffaloes, 260 men being engaged in the sport, out of which about 30.000 animals were wasted or partly eaten. Hornaday estimates that from 1820 to 1825 live buffalo expeditions went out composed of 610 carts each, killing 118,950 buffaloes. From 1825 to 1850, live expeditions of 750 carts each, killed 146,260 buffaloes. From 1835 to 1875 six expeditions of 895 carts, killed 174,528 animals. From 1835 to 1840 fifty-four expeditions of 1.090 carts each, killed 212,550 buffaloes. Total number killed by the Red river half-breeds alone in twenty years, 652,275, valued at $3,961,375. An interesting table has been furnished the Government by the firm previously mentioned, J. & I. Boskowitz, showing the decline of the buffalo as an article of commerce. It shows that in nine years this firm handled 146,175 skins, costing $924,790. In 1878 they received 41,208 robes; in 1883, 5,000; in 1884, none. The end had come, and the buffalo was a memory. Another dealer, Joseph Ullman, states that in 1881 he handled 41.000 robes, valued at $3.50, and 12,000 at $7.50. In 1882 he purchased 40,000 hides at $3.50, and 10,000 robes at $8.50. The prices hunters received were: Cow hides. $3.; bull bides, $2.50; yearlings, $1.50; calves, 50 cents. The expense of transportation brought the hide up to $3.50 in New York. This dealer in four years paid but $310,000 to these men. who killed buffaloes by the tens of thousands for $2.50 a head. Both of the above-mentioned dealers in eight years paid out $1,233,070 to the exterminators.
That the real extermination of the buffalo was caused by the demands of trade there can be no doubt, aided and abetted by sportsmen, Indians, and others; but the blame really lies with the Government that in all these years permitted a few ignorant Congressmen to block the legislation in favor of the protection of the bison, so that all the efforts of humanitarians were defeated and the hills, when passed, pigeon-holed.
There were many methods of extermination that are graphically illustrated by paintings and molds in the Smithsonian Institution. The still hunter was the most insidious enemy of the buffalo, and a single man by sneaking upon a herd has been known to kill 1,000 in a single season. One Capt. Jack Bridges, of Kansas, has the honorable (?) record of having killed 1,142 buffaloes in six weeks. He took the contract to that effect and bagged his game. Up to 1870 there were undoubtedly several million of buffaloes alive but the lust for blood was on, and soon came the demand for robes and hides from the dealers, and men who could not make a living at any thing else went out to kill buffaloes. In the different States there were regular killing outfits that cost, in rifles, horses, cars, etc., from $2,000 to $5.000. Such methods developed some famous characters, Buffalo Bill was one. He contracted with the Kansas Pacific railroad to furnish them with all the buffalo the men could eat as the road was built; and, according to Mr. Cody’s statement, they ate 4,280 buffaloes in eighteen months, for which he received $500 per month, the price he paid for his title.
Many buffaloes were killed by running them down; this was the popular method among the Indians, who shot them with rifle or bow and arrow, or chased them over precipices. The great herds north of the Missouri were mostly exterminated by the Indians of the. Manitoba Red River settlement, who hunted them in a regular army. One division of such an army of exterminators consisted of 603 carts, 700 half-breeds, 200 Indians, 500 horses, 200 oxen, and 400 dogs. The movement against the buffaloes in Nebraska were often made by 3,000 people, and as each man killed at least ten—30,000 buffaloes bit the dust. In this way Indians as above killed, it is estimated, 652,000 buffaloes.
The completion of the western railroads divided the buffaloes into two herds, northern and southern. In 1871 the southern herd was composed of an estimated 3,000,000, and from now on the animals dropped away so rapidly that it was estimated that 3,000 or 4,000 a day were killed. It became evident that they were doomed and appeals were made to the Government by the hundreds. From 1872 to 1874 there were 1,780,461 buffaloes killed and wasted—3,158,780 in all killed by the white people and the skins shipped east over the Atchison. Topeka and Santa Fe road. During the same time, the Indians killed 390,000; besides the settlers and mounted Indians killed 150,000, so that the grand sum total for the years was 3,698 780. In the following year, 1875, the deed was done. The southern herd had been swept from the face of the earth; the northern herd went in the same way. In 1882 it was believed that there were 1,000,000 buffaloes alive in the herd, but there were at least 5.000 white hunters at every point. Such a merciless war of extermination was never before witnessed in a civilized land. Then came 1883; thousands took the field this year and Sitting Bull and some whites had the honor of killing the last 10,000.
There were living at the last Government census, made eight years ago, 256 pure-blooded buffaloes in captivity, the last of the untold millions that covered this continent during the past century.— Scientific American.
The Burlingame Enterprise, Mar 8, 1900
WANTS BISON SAVED
Col. Buffalo Jones’ Plan Indorsed by Many Congressmen
Asks for the Setting Apart of a Large Preserve for the American Buffalo in the Territory of New Mexico
(Special Washington Letter)
“Buffalo Jones” is here, and will remain until he can accomplish the object of his coming.
……Congressman Lacey, of Iowa, chairman of the committee on public lands, has introduced a bill “to set apart a preserve for the American bison,” and it is proposed to place this preserved in charge of “Buffalo Jones.”
Inasmuch as Congressman Lacey has great influence in the house of representatives, because he is chairman of the committee on public lands, and inasmuch as that committee will have charge of the pending bill, it seems likely let the measure will, in due season, become a law. It is regarded as a very important proposition by all congressman who have had time to give it consideration, and a majority of them seem to spontaneously favor it.
……The proposed preserve is to be located near the southeast corner of the territory of New Mexico and is to be 40 miles square. Col. Jones says that any smaller area would be useless for many reasons. In the first place, he says that the buffalo is a living barometer. He can tell when it is going to rain, or snow, or blow and he knows how to conduct himself accordingly. In a range of 40 miles, a buffalo can care for himself, and hide in canyons, or race across the plateaus to dry places, when snow or rain are coming. There may be clear weather on one portion of a tract 40 miles square, while exceedingly inclement weather exist in some other part of the tract. Moreover, Col. Jones says that the buffalo is the greatest of all liberty-loving animals, and close confinement has caused many a one to die of a broken heart.
I am not a philanthropist,” says Col. Jones. “I am simply trying to do what seems to me a duty. No man has killed so many buffaloes as I have killed, for my victim’s number many thousands. For years I made it my business to kill them, and make money out of their hides. Moreover, in my early days, I used to kill them for sport. Now I deem it my duty to the buffalo, and also to mankind on this continent, to preserve the American bison from extinction. Only a few years ago countless millions of these animals roamed over the plains of North America. They had an absolute title to, and possession of, many millions of miles, as the Indians had to their hunting grounds. They were the invincible tribes of the plains and prairies. They would never have been subdued but for the extension of railroads across the continent. Their territory had been well nigh inaccessible, but railroads made transportation cheap, and immediately there followed a demand, from all over the world, for the beautiful, warm, soft robes of the buffalo.
……“The supply had to equal the demand. Millions of buffalo hides annually were sent abroad, and other millions were taken up in our own country. The slaughter became so widespread and of such proportions that annihilation became simply a question of a brief period of time.
……“In 1875, when I first began thinking of the necessity of preserving the buffalo, there were fully 1,000,000 still living. Now there are less than 400 left. I estimate that before the trans-continental railways were built there were between 15,000,000 and 20,000,000 of them. When I first seriously talked of domesticating the buffalo I was ridiculed by people who declared that the wildest of all animals could never be brought within the control of man. They said that nothing but a stone wall like the Chinese wall whatever hold them. The vicious old bulls had smashed away a board fence, and scattered the rails from rail fences. I tried many kinds of fence, and finally stretched barb wires around a section of 640 acres of land, and kept 150 buffaloes for a year, without any difficulty. The wire itself might have been broken by them, but they accepted it as the limit of their range, and they had no desire to break it. The wired offered no obstruction to their vision, and hence, as long as they could have freedom of site around them, they had no fear of danger, and desire to break loose from a confinement which was made agreeable to them.
……“I have demonstrated that the buffalo can be domesticated. I have buffalo milk which is sweeter, richer and more nourishing than the milk of any other breed of cows. The meat of the buffalo is better than any produced by the cattlemen of this country. The tallow is better than any butter that has ever been made, except butter churn from the cream of buffalo milk. With the aid of the government I hope to be able to preserve for prosperity the finest domestic animal given to man for this continent. Inside of 20 years there will be 10 full generations of buffalo growing into domestic habits. Their wildness will disappear, and their domesticity will increase by hereditary with each generation.
……“I have had considerable experience in taming these animals and teaching them to work in yolks like steers. It takes time and perfect patients. But when they are properly and completely ‘broken’ they become accustomed to restrain, and they exceed and courage and strength any animal subjected by man to assist in his burden of labor. I have a team of seven-year-old bulls one of whom killed a keeper who did not know how to handle him. They are gentle and work well together. They draw feed to the other animals on my ranch in winter, and are used in plowing with excellent results in summer time.
……“It was very difficult to teach the vicious fellows to carry bits and their mouths. But they do it now all right. I have hemp rope lines of the best material attached to heavy forged iron bits. Formally I had a small windlass attached to each line, and by turning the crank I could control the bulls, no matter how hard they might pull. Nowadays, however, I drive them without the use of a windlass, with as much ease and pleasure as though they were a pair of carriage horses.
……“In addition to the superiority of the buffalo cow over any of the standard breeds now generally regarded as the best in the world, her longevity must be considered. I have seen some of them sold that their horns had decayed and dropped off. I saw buffalo cow in a zoological garden which was known to be 31 years old, and I am sure I have seen wild cows 10 or 15 years older. They are good milk cows as long as they live. They are very intelligent, too, and there is no domestic animal that is more affectionate.”
The legacy bill, after carefully describing the metes and bounds of the proposed “preserve for the American bison,” fixes the status of the contract in the following words: “The Secretary of the Interior is hereby authorized and directed to lease to Charles J. Jones, of Topeka, Kan., his heirs and assigns, the tract of land described in section one of this act for a period of 20 years, free of rental charge. Said lease shall provide that the said Charles J. Jones, his heirs and assigns, shall place upon said tract of land, within one year from the passage of this act, suitable inclosures for bison, and no less than 100 full-blooded American bison, of sufficient number of males and females for breeding purposes: that it shall be unlawful to sell, kill, maim or destroy, or otherwise dispose of or removed from said tract of land by the said Charles J. Jones, his heirs or assigns, or any other person or persons whomsoever, any female bison except for sanitary, scientific or humane purposes, during the continuance of this lease, unless the increase should be in excess of one bison to each 500 acres of land in said tract and except the excess of one mailed to every 20 females.”
……The bill is a long one, but this extract shows how carefully it has been drawn, in order that the government may be protected, and the bison protected, from any possibility of Jones or any other persons been tempted to take undue advantage of the privilege granted. A penalty is also provided that “any person violating any of the provisions of the act shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction shall be punished by a fine not exceeding $500 or imprisonment of not exceeding 90 days, or both fine and imprisonment.”
……“The proposed safeguards in the bill meet with my entire approval,” says Col. Jones.” While I may be honest myself, and the committee may have perfect confidence in my integrity, my life is like all other lives, and may not last and other day. I am 56 years of age and hope to live another 20 years at least. But if my life should be snuffed out I want the work to go on, and I want it so guarded that nobody can willfully use this grant or lease for any personal gain.”
Smith D Fry.
The Dupuyer Acantha. LOC
Dupuyer, Montana April 19, 1900
TO PRESERVE THE SPECIES.
Government May Make Effort to Buffalo From Extinction.
The government is to make an effort to preserve the buffalo, which threatens to become extinct as a species, and now exists only in a few places, the famous Montana herd being one of the most notable in the country. Montanians will be interested in the news that the senate has passed a bill setting apart a reserve in New Mexico for these almost extinct animals. The house committee on public lands has made a favorable report under the bill, and Chairman Lacey will endeavor to push it through. The bill authorizes the secretary of the interior to lease to Charles K. Jones, of j Topeka, Kan., a tract of land in New j Mexico for a period of 20 years, free of rent. Jones is required to provide a suitable enclosure for bison, and not less than 100 full-blooded animals of this kink, of which there shall be both males and females for the purpose of breeding.
It will be unlawful to kill, maim, destroy, or otherwise dispose of or remove from the tracs of land any female bison, except for sanitary, scientific or humane purposes during the continuance of the lease, unless the increase should be in excess of one bison to each 500 acres of land in the tract. The excess can be disposed of by Jones and the remaining animals will become the property of the United States.
The secretary of the interior may remove from this tract every five years during the continuance of the lease five pairs of bison for use in national parks. Any person violating the provisions of this act will be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction be punished by a fine not exceeding 8500 or imprisonment not exceeding 90 days. In its report, the committee says: “Professor Hornaday thinks there are at present 400 living buffalo in the whole world. These are the here belonging to the Flathead Indians, the ‘Buffalo’ Jones herd, and the Goodnight and Corbin herds, besides a few specimens found here and there in zoological parks. There are still perhaps 20 in the Yellowstone National park and a few scattered wood buffalo west of Hudson’s bay, which embrace all that are left of countless millions of a generation ago.” -Helena Independent.
The Times Greater London England Apr 24 1900
The Scranton Republican May 11 1900
PRESERVE THE BISON
From the North American.
……Congress seems to be giving but scant attention to the efforts of C.J. Jones and others to save the American bison from utter extermination, but the subject is worthy of serious attention, and it requires prompt and effective action. The promoters of the movement are not actuated by mere sentimental motives, but give strong practical reasons why the bison should be preserved. Mr. Jones has preserved a herd of more than a hundred of the animals in Texas and has demonstrated that by crossing the bison with hardy breed of cattle a variety very valuable for beef and for hides can be produced. The cross-breed retains the characteristics that make the bison capable of taking care of himself under conditions that are disastrous to cattle. For example, the bison does not destroy the grass of the ranges but leaves untouched enough of the seed grass to insure the next year’s crop.
……When traveling to water or migrating, the bison herds move in Indian file, making a narrow trail and doing the least possible damage to the grazing land. Cattle, on the contrary, destroy more than they eat, and, in fact, they have nearly ruined the bunch grass and gamma ranges of the west, and have reduced by 50% the pasturage capacity of the land.
……Mr Jones suggests that of the 30,000 acres of wasteland in New Mexico and 2,500,000 near the Guadeloupe mountains be reserved for the bison, and that 200,000 acres be granted to him for breeding grounds, offering to give all the cows to the government and to use the proceeds of sales of surplus bulls for the care of the herd. At the end of 20 years, the entire herd is to be turned over to the government. The position seems reasonable and practical, but a committee of the House has rejected it and recommended a lease of 20,000 acres to Jones at about six cents an acre per year.
……Opposition the proposed plan for preservation of the bison was led by Pedro Perea, delegate in Congress from New Mexico, who stated before the committee that the buffalo and Indian are things of the past, and should have been exterminated long ago. Perea’s animosity to the Indian is a survival of the conflict that was waged from the days of De Vargas to the American occupation between the Spanish settlers and the wild tribes, but the Apache and Navajo have been subdued, and the restoration of the bison would not revive the hostile activity of the Indians, as Perea seems to fear. The mongrel native population of New Mexico is unprogressive and devoid of enterprise and will not reclaim or make any use of the wastelands of the territory, and therefore any opposition to Jones’ plan by New Mexico lacks reason.
New-York Tribune., May 13, 1900 LOC
AUROCHS AND BISON
STRANGE EUROPEAN CATTLE, NOW VERTUAL.LY EXTINCT
From The London Standard.
Dr.Nehring’s recent description of a horn of the aurochs, or urus, discovered in a Pomeranian peat bog, has again attracted attention to a form of big game which, since history began, has disappeared before the hunter. Popular report often confuses two species of wild cattle, the one called in science Bos primigrenius, and the other the European bison. Their remains are found under similar circumstances in cavens and various superficial deposits, the bison also occurring in the forest bed of Norfolk and having, therefore, reached .his part of Europe before the so-called glacial epoch began. But while the aurochs is extinct the bison survives, leading a protected existence in certain forests of Lithuania, but being really wild in the Caucasus. Once, however, it roamed over Europe, and in Asia extended as far as Siberia, while its bones have been found in the frozen soil of Escholtz Bay, in Alaska.
These animals were not uncommon in Central Europe in the sixteenth century, and about that time were regarded as royal same in Poland, not less than sixty being killed in one great hunt so late as 1752 Even then, however, they appear to have been restricted to Lithuania, where, as we have said, they still survive, though in greatly diminished numbers. Bison Bonassus or Europaeus bears a general resemblance to, but is specifically different from, his American cousin, named after that continent, which also has almost disappeared from the earth during the last fifty or sixty years. The American beast wandered over the prairies, while the European species is a lover of the forest. But the aurochs or urus was a very different creature, and must have been not very unlike one of the long-horned oxen which may be seen to-day in the lowlands of Italy. It was a large and formidable beast; its horns had a slight double curvature, and attained to a great length, for skulls have been found in which the bony cores measure forty-two inches: from tip to tip. That, as Mr. Lydekker states in the pages of “The Royal Natural History,” would mean that the points of the sheaths, the horns proper, must have been rather over four feet apart, and a greater length than this was: sometimes attained. They appear to have been occasionally used as drinking cups, and such a “horn of a!e” would not be quickly drained.
The aurochs is related to certain Asiatic forms of oxen, and makes its appearance in Europe, if not at the same epoch, only a little later than the bison, but was not less widely spread, for it wandered as far north as Scandinavia and Russia, and southward to Italy, Greece and even Algeria. It has been found in Palestine, where some writers have identified, it with the reem or unicorn of the Authorized Version; but how far eastward it extended has not yet been ascertained. Its remains, especially in caves, are associated with the wild horse, the brown and the grizzly bears, the lion, the spotted hyena, two species both of rhinoceros and of elephant, and a number of other animals, some still living in Europe. Such as were good for food man hunted; such as were eaters of flesh, perhaps, sometimes hunted him. A savage armed with nothing better than rudely chipped spearheads must have often fared badly when the lion was roaring after his prey, and at first, the struggle for existence between man and the wild beasts must have been protracted and severe. But that he could slay the aurochs we learn from remains found at Laugerie Basse. These cave men of Central France, though they were not so far advanced in mechanical arts as to smooth their weapons of stone, could carve bones or antlers into shapes of animals, or incise on them outline sketches, rude, but fairly accurate. One such shows an aurochs quietly feeding, while a hunter, who has crept up behind him, is just throwing his spear. The form of the horns identifies the animal, but that the bison was also known is proved by an equally characteristic sketch of two heads on a second carving. On the other side of it a hunter is attacking a wild horse. Some of the big game which these early races of men hunted apparently vanished from Europe almost simultaneously with then for what was their fate and where on earth they are now represented, unless by the Esquimaus, we cannot tell. The next race, at any rate, the neolithic folk, as they are now called, whose weapons and tools, made after more elaborate patterns, are often polished, seem to have come as conquerors. Perhaps the comers foresaw that the aborigines might give rise to inconvenient racial questions, so, as Tacitus says, “they made solitude and called it peace.” Bui with the older race several of the larger wild animals disappeared, at any rate from the British Isles from Northwestern Europe—the mammoth and the woolly rhinoceros, the hippopotamus, the sabre toothed tiger which had already become extremely rare if not extinct; perhaps, also, the lion and hyena.
They may have disappeared from our islands because a general sinking of the land replaced many broad, grassy or tree clad plains with shallow seas, and completed the severance of Britain from the Continent. This change and the incoming of a better armed and more cunning race of hunters may have turned the scale distinctly in man’s favor. Still; some big game remained, for the Britain of that age was very different from that which we inhabit. No towns only scattered villages; large districts of forest and marsh land such as. were the backwoods of Canada, and still are some parts of Central Africa. Here wild animals found ample protection and had no more to dread from ____than from the wolf or the lynx. So the reindeer remained, at any rate in the north; perhaps also, the so-called Irish elk together with the bison and the aurochs. Some thirty years ago a skull of the latter was dug out of a Cambridgeshire fen, and in it, a stone axe was found embedded in the forehead. It was broken off short, apparently snapped by striking again the bony orbit of the eye as if the animal had been struck by a blow delivered from one side.
Wood County Reporter – LOC
Grand Rapids, Michigan May 31, 1900
LAST OF THE BISON
Down in the panhandle of Texas, there are about 100 boys and girls who are getting an education at a college supported by buffaloes. Fourteen years ago Charles Goodnight, a Texas ranchman, at the request of his wife, caught three buffalo calves from which they have raised the largest herd of buffaloes now in this country. As the herd increased in size Mrs. Goodnight sold some of the animals to zoological gardens, and with the money, she started a little college for the children of other ranch people who were without schools or the means of education.
The Goodnights are great friends of “Buffalo” Jones of Kansas, a famous hunter who had a herd in the northwest which he took to Texas and went into partnership in the Goodnight ranch. Mr. and Mrs. Goodnight are growing old. They have never had any children of their own, but they have learned to love their buffaloes almost as much as if the animals were children, and they do not wish the herd to become scattered and left to die after they themselves are dead, so they have asked the government to give them a lease of a big tract of wild land in New Mexico where buffaloes can be raised and preserved, they agreeing to supply animals for national parks to pay some of the profits to the Goodnight college, and at the end of twenty years to give their whole herd to the government, “Buffalo” Jones, their partner, is now in Washington trying to get congress to accept the offer.
“In Drinking, the Buffalo Come Down to the Water in Single File, Like Indians and Soldiers”
The government has 30.000.000 acres of unoccupied land in New Mexico and in the section around the Guadeloupe mountains nothing lives at the present time. It is the best place in the world for raising a herd of buffaloes, for there is plenty of buffalo grass, gamma, grass, and shade. Mr. Jones wants the government to set 2,500.000 acres of this land for the use of the buffalo, and he will himself agree to utilize 500,000 acres of it for this purpose. The committee on public lands in the lower house of congress has agreed to recommend that only 20,000 acres be leased to Mr. Jones, which is not enough for his purpose, as the buffalo is a migratory animal and likes to wander about. It can live on less land, though, than cattle for the reason that cattle in grazing run all over the fields, cropping a mouthful of grass here and there and destroying more than they eat. Besides which cattle only bite off at first that part of the grass containing the seeds and afterwards come back and eat it nearer the roots. The bison when grazing line up like a company of soldiers, about eight feet apart, and eat the grass down to the roots as they go forward. The strip of grass left between each animal is about four feet wide and this furnishes the seed the next year for the land that has been eaten over so that plains on which buffaloes feed are each year covered with fresh grass, while in the places where cattle feed the grass is soon destroyed. Buffaloes never have the diseases common to cattle because it is a cleaner animal. In drinking, for instance, the buffaloes come down to the water in single file, like Indians or soldiers: they are usually led by an old cow and each one treads in the tracks of the one before it. This makes deep paths in the prairie, called trails, and when once these trails have been made the buffaloes always use them in going to and from their drinking places. When they get to the water, they go in, drink their fill and come right out again. Cattle straggle down without any system or order, wallow in the watering place, often until it is foul and the water unfit to drink, and when they come out wander aimlessly around, tramping down more grass than they eat, while the buffaloes go back to their feeding grounds in single file by the same trail they come.
In the summer time when cattle become thin and poor by reason of being worried by flies and mosquitoes, the buffalo waxes fat because his thick under fur and the “pantalets” on his legs protect him from these pests. In the winter time when the blizzards and other storms stampede herds of cattle causing them to drift with the storm until many of them are lost or die from weakness, the buffalo faces the storm and quietly eats on his thick winter robe of fur protecting him against the fiercest blizzard that ever blew. In the spring when they shed their thick fur coats they go where there is hard, dry clay and roll until they curry themselves clean. These places are called buffalo wallows, but they are never wet or unclean as the name would suggest.
The buffalo always lies with his back up hill, so that he can get upon his feet quickly and easily. At night a certain number of them stand guard and do picket duty while the herd sleeps. At the first sign of danger the guards and pickets give an alarm. They are courageous animals and combined are able to fight off all foes except man.
All of these things and more ‘‘Buffalo” Jones has told the committee of congress about this noble animal to which nature has given a keener instinct than almost any other wild quadruped.
“Buffalo Bill,” in writing of the plan proposed for saving the buffaloes, says: “Means have been taken to save the seal, but the buffalo, whose fur at one time was so common, is now really more valuable than the seal. The question of preserving all the fur bearing animals must be considered, and that soon. If we set about it earnestly and quickly we may save the buffalo; in a few years it will be too late. We may save it to be a fur bearing animal when the seal has become extinct. The buffalo may be raised in captivity, but the seal, never. Alaska will one of these days have a great population to whom cheap furs will be a necessity. They will need food animals as well. In my opinion, the buffalo crossed with hardy Scotch cattle (this has been successfully tried by “Buffalo” Jones) is the animal for the north. The surplus buffaloes will provide the Alaska Americans with fur coats, and the cross breeds (catalos) with meat.”
“Buffalo” Jones, when a young man, bunted buffaloes for a company, getting fifty cents for each one he shot. The company marketed the hides for two dollars each and left the carcass to waste. “Buffalo Bill” says that he has killed 1,280 buffaloes, which were used by men building the Kansas Pacific railroad. Hide hunters have killed many, but the greatest destroyers of buffaloes were Generals Sherman, Sheridan, Hancock, Harvey, Miles and Merritt. These generals all commanded troops in wars with the Indians, and the herds of buffaloes were the Indians’ commissary department, supplying their meat, and in order to subdue the Indians, the soldiers slaughtered their buffaloes by wholesale, until today not any remain on the plains. Soon they will be known only by the pictures unless protected by the government.—Little Chronicle.
Pine Bluff Daily Graphic
Pine Bluff, Arkansas, Jun 3, 1900
IT BISON RESERVE TO BE ESTABLISHED ON PUBLIC LANDS IN NEW MEX.
The Petrified Forest of Arizona to be Made a National Park.
Special Correspondence to the Graphic.
ALBUQUERQUE, N,M., May 28 — A little over a quarter of a century ago the great Southwest was full of Bison. The thousands of herds that roamed the Western plains and the constant fear of buffalo stampedes added to the terrors of commercial caravans and pioneer life. The stampede was almost as dangerous to the freighters and caravans bound for California over the Santa Fe Trail along in the fifties as though warlike tribes of Indians. But the advent of the great transcontinental railroads has changed all this. The Red Men have become trackable and are now peacefully confined to their reservations or pueblos, while the great American bison has become almost extinct.
Recently there has been a movement to establish a bison reserve, on which a small herd of buffalo are to be confined, bred and developed. A bill has recently been reported to the Lower House of Congress by the committee on public lands to set aside 20,000 acres of public land in New Mexico for a buffalo reserve, to be placed in charge of “Buffalo” Jones, who now owns the only herd of bison on the continent.
The committee gives its reasons for reporting the bill in most interesting language, and report is not without historical value. The report says:
“There is perhaps no fact in the natural history of America which brings such reproach on civilized man as the reckless and almost total destruction of the bison. At this time there are in all probability not 500 animals on the continent. When America was discovered by the American Indians, measured by their flocks and herds, were as opulent as any people on the globe. The bison was the common property of all. He took care of himself both winter and summer and furnished a never-failing supply of food and raiment for the aborigines. Through inconceivable ages, this animal has become adapted to the soil, climate, and surroundings. The bison is the most typically American of all the indigenous beast on the continent.
“In 1832 the last of the bison was killed east of the Mississippi river. Before the development of the railroads vast herds of these animals avoided the destructive effects of the white settlements by emigrating to the far west, and down to as late as 1870 they still numbered very many millions. The building of the Pacific railroad was the signal for the destruction of these vast herds. They were slaughtered without mercy, for sport, and for profit. The most pitiful story in history of all animal life is Professor William T. Hornaday’s report on the extinction of the American bison. The mania for slaughter seems to have affected every one. The English lord, the miner, the cowboy and the emigrant slew right and left, gotten the plains with thousands upon thousands of tons of bleaching bones that have since been gathered up and transported to the sugar refineries on the Atlantic coast. These herds, that could have easily been converted into domestic animals and preserved as a permanent source of wealth, have literally been swept from the face of the earth.
Professor Hornaday thinks that there are at present 400 living buffalo in the whole world. The herd of the Flathead Indians, the ‘Buffalo” Jones herd, the Goodnight herd, the Corbin herd, a few specimens here and there in zoological parks, remnants still of perhaps twenty in the Yellowstone national park, and a few scattered buffalo west of Hudson Bay embrace all that are left of the countless millions of a generation ago.
“In New Mexico, the Buffalo finds his natural home, both summer, and winter. There remain vast acres of unoccupied public lands where the buffalo formally roamed and bread with much fruitfulness. Domestic cows can be placed on this range and crossed with buffalo bulls. This is no longer an experiment. This product of this cross is an animal with a coat heavy enough to resist the severest winter storm. This, however, is only an incident to the real purpose of the plan, as there would be no attempt made to breed from the female buffalo anything but the pure-blooded bison. The addition would be made by breeding domestic cows, and so the production of pure bloods would not be in this manner decreased.”
There is also a probability that Congress will set aside as a National Park the petrified forest in the central-east of Arizona. The readers of the Graphic will remember that I gave them something of a description of this great natural wonder during my sojourn in Arizona last summer. It is proposed to designate the “forest” as “Chalcedoney Park.” This is one of the most remarkable natural curiosities in the world. It is only a few miles from the Santa Fe railroad, and on a direct route to the Grand Canyon of the Colorado, perhaps the greatest natural wonder in the world. The petrified forest is thus described by a government expert:
“There is every evidence to show that the trees grew beside some inland sea. After falling they became water-logged, and during that decomposition, the cell structure of the wood was entirely replaced by silica from sandstone in the walls surrounding this great inland sea. Over the entire area, trees lie scattered in all conceivable positions and in fragments of all sizes. If phenomenon perhaps unparalleled in the most remarkable feature of the park is the natural bridge formed by a tree of agatized to wood spanning a canyon forty-five feet in width. The park was discovered in 1853.”
The Kalispell Bee – LOC
Kalispell, Montana, June 15, 1900
Mr. C. E. Conrad has purchased one-eighth of the Allard herd of buffalo which have been ranging for a number of years on the Flathead reservation under the watchful eye of herders. The buffalo don’t seem to lose much of their wildness by the herding process and Mr. Conrad very wisely nominated in the bond that the shaggy creatures should be delivered. It is expected that this part of the contract will be somewhat difficult to fulfill as the buffalo will be much harder to handle than the ordinary range steer and it will be a ticklish job to get them from where they are ranging now to the pasture which Mr. Conrad is having prepared for them about three miles north of Kalispell. About 250 acres of land will be strongly fenced and Mr. Conrad’s share of the herd, numbering about 40 head will be allowed to roam at will therein.
The present plan of transportation is to load the buffalo on a barge at the foot of the lake and have the steamer tow the barge to De Mersville which will be only about five miles from their destination, it is expected that the final part of the trip will be the hardest.
Buffalo are very valuable livestock just now, a cow being worth about $500. This will seem just a little remarkable to the old timers who have seen thousands of bison in countless herds roaming the prairies not many years ago. The Allard herd are probably the only buffalo left in the west outside of those in the National Park.
The close vicinage of a herd of buffalo will add in no small degree to the attractiveness of Kalispell as a point of interest to visitors.
The Chieftain – LOC
Socorro, New Mexico, September 22, 1900
Buffalo Jones Has Made a Failure of His Theory
Stockmen who have clung to the theory advanced by “Buffalo ‘ Jones to the effect that quarter-blood or half-blood buffaloes would increase the value of western cattle have been compelled to acknowledge their error.
Reports from Sioux City, in which neighborhood there are several half-blood buffalo herds, indicate that the ranchmen who have tried the experiment have failed to achieve any success in crossing domestic cattle with the shaggy survivors of the one-time monarchs of the plains. The half-blood buffaloes are still buffaloes, so far as the flavor and texture of their meat is concerned, and buffalo meat is strong and coarse, and not to be compared with prime beef. The hides are not valuable, either, because the front is rough and shaggy and the high part is rather smooth, like steers. This variation of texture makes it less valuable than beef hide, and consequently in less demand.
The main argument advanced by “Buffalo” Jones in favor of crossing native cattle with the American bison was that the buffalo is a more economical range feeder. The buffalo did not trample down what grass he did not eat, as cattle are apt to do, and in consequence, the supply of grass was always plentiful, no matter how large the herds that roamed the prairies every year. But this ‘argument loses strength in view of the fact that the range is disappearing. There are no more immense herds, of cattle feeding on thousands of acres of buffalo grass, as in early days in the west. The ranchman does most of his feeding from the harvested crops of alfalfa or hay, and when it comes time to fatten for the market the cattle are shipped to the corn states.
This evolution in cattle feeding has taken away the last claim of the buffalo to survival. It is lamentable that the buffalo has been so thoroughly exterminated that there are few specimens left for museums and preserves, but the great herds of the animals were not a necessity to civilization, and it was only natural that they should have disappeared, like the Indian, in the march of civilization. Now that the last claims of the champions of the buffalo, front, a utilitarian standpoint, have been disproved, the quarter-blood and half-blood herds will doubtless disappear as quickly as did their full-blood predecessors.
The Seattle Post-Intelligencer – LOC
Seattle, Washington October 14, 1900,
Last of the Buffalo in Montana
Not many years ago buffalo roamed the Montana plains at will. The buffalo is now a curiosity-so much a rarity that a photograph of a herd of them is a work of art to be especially esteemed because of the subject it treats. A man consumed a month to secure the accompanying picture, which is reproduced in the Post-Intelligencer from the Montana Mining Record. It is the picture of the Allard herd, in the Flathead basin. Day after day the artist carried his camera over the hills and through the valleys and repeatedly stole marches on the bison. Several times he gained a position where the light favored the work and he was within a moment of being ready to snap the shutter when the herd scampered away. Infinite patience was at last rewarded and the negative in the hands of Elliott, of Butts, has come to have a value peculiar to itself. The herd has been encroached upon since then and it is doubtful whether a picture of as many buffalo in one herd will ever be taken with a camera.
Thirty-eight years ago the pioneers coming to Montana found the buffalo a nuisance because of his numbers. In 1863 a party coming up the Missouri river in a steamer was compelled to tie up two days to allow a herd to cross the river ahead of them.
The Yellowstone valley was a great stamping ground in the early sixties, and as late as 1872. It is reported that miners saw buffalo In the Prickly Pear valley in 1862, before the discovery of gold in the Last Chance.
The Montana bison now attracts attention because of the sentiment that attaches to a disappearing genus. He lacks grace and beauty. Years ago he furnished food for the trapper and Indian fighter, but they still say that the flesh of nearly any other animal was more nutritious. Theophlle B. Sackett, of Bozeman, used to tell how he made a trip of two days with nothing but Jerked buffalo meat to eat and narrowly escaped starving to death.
“It was cut into long string to dry It.” he said, “and we had several hundred yards of it alone We ate and ate and the more we consumed of the stuff the hungrier we not. I was never so glad to heave In sight of a square meal as I was after putting down twenty or thirty pounds of Jerked buffalo on that trip. I’ve seen them so thick that you couldn’t travel, and it seemed but a few years until they had practically gone altogether. There are men living now who will know the day when the buffalo will be known only as a dime museum freak.”
The Brooklyn Daily Eagle Nov 25 1900 Prospect Park
The Globe-Republican -LOC
Dodge City, Kansas Dec 20 1900
The American Bison
The buffalo or American bison is practically extinct. Thirty years ago they roamed by millions over the western plains, northward in the spring and southward in the fall, where had been their natural grazing-grounds for centuries. No man has been more familiar with these innocent monarchs of the plains than C. J. (Buffalo) Jones, who has seen them vanish from the earth, almost like a mist before a summer sun. In the New York Herald he gives the following account of his experiences with them and the success of his efforts to establish a new breed, which he calls ‘catalo,” by crossing the buffalo bulls with Galloway and Polled Angus cows:
“About thirty years ago I moved to the frontier. I was poor and it became necessary for me to join the skin hunters. I was a good shot and soon became an expert. I hired myself out to a company of farmers to shoot down buffalo at fifty cents each. I was a good hand at this bloody trade and my bosses made money following me up, skinning the animals that I had shot and marketing their hides at $2 each. I realized that the work was cruel and wicked, and many a time, as I stood and looked down into the dying eyes of the great monarchs of the plains and listened to their groans, I felt like swearing off the whole business. Next morning I would be awakened by the ‘crack, crack of the rifles all over the plain, and, concluding that the work of extermination would not be delayed over fifteen minutes in all by my small efforts, I would again join the chase.
“Even while we were killing thousands of the noble animals each year, I made up my mind that I would one day atone for my cussedness by rescuing a few of the bison, herding them and protecting them as best I might be able. This I have done. Out on the Western plains, the cow men and the ranchers will tell you how much of an effort has been necessary in order that a few of the remaining buffalo might survive up to the present.
“The bison is an animal perfectly trained to take every advantage of his environments. His instinct surpasses that of the shrewdest ranchman because for ages he maintained himself where the cattle of the ranchmen are now dying. There is no waste grass left on the four-feet swath which the animal cuts in feeding. The herd rise at dawn and commence to graze. When filled they start for the trail, led usually by an old cow, who gives the signal for starting by sounding a grunt not unlike that of a hog, only much louder. The remainder of the herd drop in behind, following exactly in her footprints until they reach the path which leads them to their drinking place. This path never exceeds twelve inches in width. It is the same path along which the ancestors of these buffalo have traveled for countless ages.
“When the pool, lake or stream is reached, the buffalo step in, fill themselves, and immediately return to the banks instead of lingering in the water and polluting it, as domestic cattle do. Thus, by keeping to one track they have saved the grass over which the cattle straggle to water, and they have kept the water pure and fresh. After resting an hour or so they wend their way over a well-defined trail for miles and miles, without cutting a blade of the grass which is so necessary for their subsistence. If the man who ’causes two blades’ of grass to grow where only one has grown is a benefactor of the race, how much more is the buffalo a benefactor, who – preserves thousands of blades that other animals ruthlessly destroy.
“The buffalo never yields to disease. He is clean ‘in his domestic habits and in consequence always drinks pure water, eats clean, fresh grass, does not besmear himself with filth, and consequently never suffers from any of the skin diseases common to domestic or range cattle. His thick under fur and the ‘pantalets’ which cover his legs make him unaware of the existence of flies in summer and allow him to fatten where domestic cattle grow thin and die on account of those pests. When winter comes he adds an additional robe of fur to his ‘robe of fat, and turning his head to the storm eats quietly along to the front in the face of the fiercest blizzard that ever blew.
“There are many small traits of the buffalo that are lacking in cattle. The buffalo cow never allows her calf to be destroyed by the coyote. The buffalo never mire in swamps or pools, as so many cattle do. When they find that they are becoming stuck they throw themselves on their sides and swim or paddle through the mud as would a hog. In springtime they curry themselves by rolling wallows made in _________________________thus removing their winter coats and loosening up their skins, so as to take on flesh. They always lie with their backs up a hill so as to raise early and always have guards out day and) night to warn the herd of approaching danger. They always face in a storm, and never ‘drift in do cattle-They lie down with their head to the fiercest storm, throwing their heads around on their sides and sleeping contentedly, while the great mass of fur on their high humps shields the more exposed parts of their bodies from the winds.
“What is true of the buffalo is also true of the ‘catalo, a cross which I originated first in Kansas, and afterwards continued in Texas. The catalo is a cross between the buffalo and the domestic cow, and in all essentials, it takes its instinct from the stronger blood that of the buffalo. In my travels in the Arctic regions, I became convinced that millions of meat-bearing animals could be maintained there if nature’s laws were followed. We cannot expect to cultivate cattle or buffalo on the luxuriant moss of the far North, where the reindeer and musk-ox thrive. Neither can we expect to make a complete success with cattle on the buffalo’s natural pasturage.
The new race of cattle the catalo which I have produced by crossing: the buffalo with the Galloway and Polled Angus cattle are as well adapted to the shortgrass country as the buffalo, and they combine with the best natural characteristics of the buffalo the peculiar advantages of cattle for human food. The catalo has the great size and weight of the buffalo. It breeds as fast and is as healthy. Its flesh is as juicy, compact and sweet as that of our best cattle. For shelter it requires only the handsome black beaver hide, which is a cross between the strong, heavy coat of the buffalo and the softer hide of its cow mother.
Lawrence Daily Journal Dec 25, 1900
BUFFALO AMONG CATTLE
Relic of Old Days Appears In North Dakota Herd
……An immense Buffalo bull has put in an appearance among the cattle owned by the Sioux Indians and ranged near the Standing Rock reservation, 60 miles south of Bismarck North Dakota. The animals came unheralded, whence nobody knows, says the Chicago Record. For years it has been supposed that every bison was extinct in North Dakota, and the last time that any were seen in the state was back in the middle of the 80s, when Gov. Roosevelt, hunting along the Little Missouri River, killed one at the crossing of the river. The animal that has made its appearance near Standing Rock is unusually wild and fierce and disposed to attack herdsman who attempt to get near it. Strict orders have been issued by the agent against killing the animal in the hope that it will remain in that others may be discovered.
……The presence of this loan monarch of the prairie recalls the time when the bison ranged the vast prairies in the western part of the state by thousands if not millions, when every waterhole was a gathering place for them and the hills and the valleys were worn deep with trails along which the animal went from feeding ground for watering places. Even yet all through the western part of the state, there are deep trails that were made by the bison and that have not been wiped out in half a century. The suddenness of the extinction of the bison is among the most remarkable features of the development of the West. From thousands and hundreds of thousands, they dwindled away almost at once.