TexasEscapes.comTexas Escapes Online Magazine: Travel and History
Columns: History, Humor, Topical and Opinion
Over 1800 Texas Towns & Ghost Towns
NEW : : TEXAS TOWNS : : GHOST TOWNS : : TEXAS HOTELS : : FEATURES : : COLUMNS : : ARCHITECTURE : : IMAGES : : SITE MAP : : SEARCH SITE
HOME
SEARCH SITE
ARCHIVES
RESERVATIONS
Texas Hotels
Hotels
Cars
Air
Cruises
 
 Texas : Features : Columns : "It's All Trew"

Indian trails full of mysteries

by Delbert Trew
Delbert Trew

Few things are more enjoyable to Ruth and I than prowling the Trew Ranch. Now in the family for over 60 years, the changes wrought by Mother Nature and time continually fascinate.

Ownership history goes back almost to the end of the Red River Wars of 1875. The ranch abstracts show where Lewis Carhart, founder of Saint's Roost and Clarendon, sold land to Sir Alfred Rowe, an English rancher and founder of the RO Ranch and the town of McLean. He was also body No. 109 recovered after the Titanic sank in 1912.

Our north boundary is marked by Old Trails Ridge where Indians traveled from the creek bottoms of Oklahoma to Tucumcari Mountain. This same ridge was chosen to place the Rock Island Railroad in 1900 to 1902. Even later, in 1927, the ridge was designated Route 66, one of the earliest highway crossings America. One short stretch of land 200 yards wide displays Indian trails, an old dirt highway, a coast-to-coast fiber-optic telephone line, the Rock Island Railroad right-of-way, Old Route 66 and both lanes of I-40.

A number of old homestead sites are located here and they are marked by concrete foundations and low places in the soil. A visit to these sites after a hard rain usually reveals bits and pieces of the past. Repairing fences along the old Railroad and Route 66 sites has yielded a number of tourism artifacts.

A 3-inch rain two years ago left a buffalo skeleton showing in a cutbank buried about 3 feet below the surface. It appeared to be a yearling-past with the hump ribs just beginning to form. We removed the bones but found no evidence of the head.

A recent visit to the head of Bobcat Canyon where we used to see the critters each time we rode by, revealed a sinkhole 10 feet long, 5 feet wide and about 14 feet deep. It was located right on the edge of the cap rock and could not be seen from any distance. The bottom displayed a cow skeleton which proved to be complete with no broken bones. Now the mystery. Did she fall into the hole or did the soil cave in with her weight as she walked?

Occasionally we find flint scrapers and arrowheads. More likely we find piles of flint chips where an Indian lookout watched over his group camping below in the canyon, while sitting on the cap rock watching for enemies or settlers.

Another mystery never solved came when we found several empty, brass .22-caliber cartridges at an old homestead down in Southwest Canyon. Bois de Arc post stumps mark the lines of a small frame cabin and a crude yard gate still attached to the only yard post. The cartridge cases were bright and exhibited a Maltese Cross inscribed on the shell head.

My gunsmith son, Mike, sent the cartridge cases to a known ammunition expert in Colorado.

After months of research he found they had been manufactured in a small factory in Belgium in the early days but had never been exported out of the country.

Now, how did those cartridges make it around the world and across Indian land to end up at a settler's shack in our canyon? Sounds like a plot for a novel to me.

Delbert Trew
"It's All Trew" February 17, 2008 Column
E-mail: trewblue@centramedia.net.
Related Topics: Texas | Features | Columns | Texas Towns | Texas Panhandle

 
HOME | TEXAS ESCAPES ONLINE MAGAZINE | TEXAS HOTELS
TEXAS TOWN LIST | TEXAS GHOST TOWNS | TEXAS COUNTIES

Texas Hill Country | East Texas | Central Texas North | Central Texas South | West Texas | Texas Panhandle | South Texas | Texas Gulf Coast
TRIPS | STATES PARKS | RIVERS | LAKES | DRIVES | MAPS

TEXAS FEATURES
Ghosts | People | Historic Trees | Cemeteries | Small Town Sagas | WWII | History | Black History | Rooms with a Past | Music | Animals | Books
COLUMNS : History, Humor, Topical and Opinion

TEXAS ARCHITECTURE | IMAGES
Courthouses | Jails | Churches | Gas Stations | Schoolhouses | Bridges | Theaters | Monuments/Statues | Depots | Water Towers | Post Offices | Grain Elevators | Lodges | Museums | Stores | Banks | Gargoyles | Cornerstones | Pitted Dates | Drive-by Architecture | Old Neon | Murals | Signs | Ghost Signs | Then and Now
Vintage Photos

TRAVEL RESERVATIONS | HOTELS | USA | MEXICO

Privacy Statement | Disclaimer | Recommend Us | Contributors | Staff | Contact TE
Website Content Copyright 1998-2008. Texas Escapes - Blueprints For Travel, LLC. All Rights Reserved
This page last modified: February 17, 2009