Lion and a Boy by Mike Cox
The eight-year-old snuggled next to the seemingly docile animal
looks quite at ease... More than 50 years later, with a nod to the
late radio commentator Paul Harvey, I learned the rest of the story.
not to like about animals? They don't borrow money - they don't ask
for a ride to the airport and they'll never ask you to help them move.
On the flip side: they don't help out with chores, they run around
naked all the time and they couldn't care less about world peace -
as long as their immediate territory is under control - preferably
Animals bring out the best in humans - even Texans. So we're including
this feature where we can read stories of how animals improve our
lives, lower our blood pressure and attempt to pay us back (in their
own simple and mysterious ways) for those midnight runs for pet food.
Cows / Cattle
/ Longhorns / Oxen
Ranches & Ranching
Texas Longhorn: Shaped By Nature by Clay Coppedge
Abattoir by Mike Cox
Rockport used to be a coastal cow town, a place where hooves and
horns drove the local economy, not fishing and tourism...
by David Knape
the Bear by Mike Cox
Nickels were hard to come by in the tough economic times of the
early 1890s, but the cowboys patronizing Jim Scarborough’s saloon
in Claude never minded standing Blackie a drink when they could
Texas' first industry by Delbert Trew
The book "The Long Trail" by Gardner Sowle, published in 1976
by McGraw-Hill, tells the real story of early cowboys, longhorns
and the first industry developed in Texas. This was the chore
of capturing, branding, taming, raising and driving longhorns
adjust to barbed wire by Delbert Trew
Because of the nature of the subject, a significant chapter of
Old West history - bloody livestock injuries - is often ignored
or forgotten. However, it did happen, and here is the story.
the Calves by Robert G. Cowser
In the late 1940s cattle auctions were common in the towns of
Northeast Texas. Each town picked a different day of the week
so as not to compete with nearby towns...
feed, from slab to sack by Delbert Trew
Like all progress, the evolution of ranch livestock feeding has
changed greatly, and for the better.
scene paves way to ranch memories by Delbert Trew
Lake - Watering spot for cattle
Cattlemen saved Texas from financial ruin by Murray Montgomery
After the Civil War, Texas and the rest of the South were in a
bad economic situation. The war had drained the resources of the
defeated states and when the soldiers returned home, they found
it extremely hard to make a living. But Texas had an untapped
resource roaming wild on the open range – longhorn cattle provided
an industry that grew to become the largest in the state.
Fever by C. F. Eckhardt
South Texas cattle didn’t die of the disease. They didn’t even
show signs of it. Within weeks after south Texas herds passed
northern herds sickened, began to pass red urine, and then—in
95 cases out of 100—died. It was called Redwater Fever from the
red urine, or simply Texas Fever. Nobody knew what caused it...
Pecos by Mike Cox
She didn’t have a particularly feminine sounding name, but the
old heifer they called Pecos sure came branded with a good story.
Legend Of Bone Hill by Bob Bowman
Bone Hill, a landmark standing about four miles northeast of Center,
reportedly got its name from a herd of cattle who died atop the
mill, leaving their bones to whiten in the East Texas sun. But,
as with all legends, there’s more to the story...
Branded Murder 1889 by Murray Montgomery
To the cowboys who rode the range in West Texas during the [1890s]
there was one longhorn steer that was always an object of dread...
His appearance among their herds brought a chill of terror to
in the Brush by Mike Cox
If you’re tired and ready to hit the beach at South Padre, the
120-mile drive from Corpus Christi can seem like it’s going to
take forever. But imagine walking that distance. And in a time
before convenience stores, Dairy Queens or any other places to
get water or something to eat. That is what it was like in the
late winter of 1846 when Gen. Zachary Taylor started his Army
on its march from Corpus Christi to Point Isabel (now Port Isabel)
and the nearby Rio Grande...
Silly by Mike Cox
Fuss over a Cow at Snow Hill...
Cattle Deaths’ Not So Mysterious by C. F. Eckhardt
In the news over the past several years there has been a rash
of ‘mysterious’ deaths of livestock, most notably cattle. Apparently
the animals have been sucked dry of blood, as a general rule the
genitals have been cut out, apparently surgically, the eyes are
usually gone, often the tongue is gone, and the rectum has been
removed. These have been blamed on everything from UFOs to Satanic
cults. Apparently, they are the result of neither.
Cows by Mike Cox
"...But at night, especially when the moon bathed the landscape
in a light far cooler than day, the energy level rose. Not only
did the animals move, many believed that unrested souls flitted
about. Strange things were said to happen..."
Cows - Bovine Saboteurs of WWI by Mike Cox
Shoot the Bull" by N. Ray Maxie
This is a post WWII story when I was about eight or nine years
old and written here to the best of my memory...
Field Guide to Cows" by John Pukie. A book review
Fifty-two breeds are featured with their identifying characteristics,
vital statistics and even cow demographics. Humor is abundant...
the Cow AKA Doris of LaGrange
Belle, sometime spokescow for Bluebell Creameries ...
on the Trail by Murray Montgomery
The cowboy legacy is very much alive in Texas ...
'Spares' needed pairs by Delbert Trew
Many historical journals kept by travelers using wagon trains
pulled by oxen describe the herds of extra oxen driven along for
tales - true or not by Delbert Trew
Story of a sucking calf weighing about 300 pounds...
in Galveston by Mike Cox
One rancher blamed the livestock deaths on barbed wire, which
in 1895 had only been around Texas for slightly longer than a
Conversation With The Family... (of Longhorns)
Cartoon by Roger T. Moore
Texas Official Large Mammal
Nolan and All the Pretty Horses by Clay Coppedge 6-8-18
Hall by Mike Cox 3-7-18
One of the founders of the American Quarter Horse Association.
Zareta: Queen of the Turf by Clay Coppedge 2-16-18
Pan Zareta, the greatest filly in horse racing history, known
affectionately as the "Texas Whirlwind" and "Panzy," set records
at race tracks in three countries over the course of six years.
Days of Texas Polo by Michael Barr
Mustang at The Polo Club by Michael Barr
Not all mustangs made good polo ponies, but the ones with an aptitude
for the game were extraordinary.
Popularity of Polo by Michael Barr
Fredericksburg was the smallest town in the country with a polo
club sanctioned by the American Polo Association.
Grave by the Old Oak Tree by Mike Cox
"In those days cattle rustling was one of the worst crimes
a man could commit, and it brought upon the culprit the same swift
and sure punishment as was administered to a murderer."
Horse Thief's Prayer by Mike Cox
Texas Horses by Clay Coppedge
Hirsch and Assault: Three of a Kind by Clay Coppedge
K. Green by Clay Coppedge
Of the many who have been called Texas writers no one was more
Texan than Ben K. Green, who wrote the classic “Horse Tradin’”
and several other wildly entertaining and mostly true books. That
book and the bestsellers that followed were written late in his
life after he had spent five decades around horses. Ben Green
knew horses and he knew people and he knew how to tell a story.
Dust by Clay Coppedge
Old timers believed the Steelduster is a separate breed but the
horses can trace back to single horse named Steel Dust.
Falls Falls for Flim Flam Brit by Mike Cox
Before the wild oil boom that came with the discovery of a rich
field, Wichita Falls was just a cattle town of around 5,000 folks...
Whip by C. F. Eckhardt
"Then came April, 1836. Santa Anna and his army showed up
on Vince’s doorstep. The family promptly fled, leaving their stock
behind—including Old Whip. Santa Anna immediately appropriated
the stallion for his own use..."
Hirsch, Healer and Winner Clay Coppedge
Max Hirsch, and Assault, the only Triple Crown winner from Texas.
Hirsch - Wizard of the Race Track by Michael Barr
horses and outlaw cattle by Delbert Trew
When old-time ranchers and cowboys gather, they talk for hours
recalling every horse they rode and telling the reasons for his
The camp was described as a rock corral for horses, officers quarters
and tents for the enlisted men. A farrier had space to work and
between the camp and the river, the land was used to break horses
and / or teach horsemanship...
Horse by Mike Cox
Frontiersmen James Buckner “Buck” Barry and his horse...
hobbles were a vital tool by Delbert Trew
Of all the cowboy gear used down through history, horse hobbles
are among the most important. These restraints around the front
legs of your mount allowed him to graze in a limited fashion yet
kept him from traveling very far or very fast...
Horse Marines by Clay Coppedge
Considering how much Texas history has occurred on horseback it
isn’t surprising to learn that one of the Republic’s greatest
naval victories was achieved by 20 or so armed and mounted rangers
known to history as the Texas Horse Marines...
enabled Comanches to rule Texas by Delbert Trew
Comanche culture was built around the use of horses for all reasons.
Many stories and theories have been written about how the Indians
Murder Maverick by C. F. Eckhardt
If you’ve ridden many miles on the sunset side of the Colorado
and listened to people talk in bars and cafes, you’ve heard a
good many tales. Once you get west of the Pecos, there’s one in
particular you’ll hear. You’ll hear the tale of a phantom steer
called ‘the Murder Maverick.’...
Seabiscuit Stamp: How It Came To Be by Maggie Van Ostrand
On May 11th, a 44-cent rate-change stamp featuring the great thoroughbred
racehorse, Seabiscuit, will be issued by the U.S. Postal Service.
This stamp is significant for one huge reason: We the people did
it! It took us eight long years...
stories from pioneer days by Delbert Trew
If you had lived before, during and immediately after the Civil
War and had been seriously wounded, your life might have depended
on the hair from a horse's tail. How could this be? Well listen
up to some "hair" stories.
the legendary horse by Clay Coppedge
"Even when involved with outlawry and banditry, the horse
is always blameless… In that blameless way of horses, Yalgo is
linked to King Fisher's first foray into a life of crime."
Cavalry Horse by Mike Cox
"That cold winter morning, Dec.14, 1932, was a sad one for old-time
horse soldiers and civilians alike at Fort D.A. Russell in Marfa
-- they both realized they were witnessing the end of an era."
CSA Vet Thomas Evans Riddle, & Man o’ War by Mike Cox
"Thomas Evans Riddle bet on a dead racehorse. He lost.
The horse was Man o’ War..."
Parson by Mike Cox
How a preacher held a horse race and build a church
Two Willies and a Max In Hall of Fame, At Tracks by Bill Bradfield
Texas ranches and stables have been closely linked with the sport
of horse racing for generations. Just consider the string of great
racehorses developed by the King Ranch alone... For another kind
of horseracing royalty, however, turn to two men nicknamed Willie,
and another man better known as Max at the tracks.
Braids by Mike Cox
More Texans owned horses than automobiles in 1910, but when the
middle-aged man rode into Eagle Pass that summer, people noticed.
That Old Steer by Archie P. McDonald, PhD
for Each Other by Maggie Van Ostrand
Certain living things are meant for each other, whether it be
a caballo and a canine, or a lady and a lake.
Miniature horses and Monastery of Saint Claire
Horses by Delbert Trew
Texas' only Triple Crown Winner Cartoon by Roger T. Moore
A Horse Poem by David Knape
in the Pickup Bed by C. F. Eckhardt
When the Burnham brothers of Marble Falls first created the varmint
call, back in the '50s, the devices were nowhere near as sophisticated
as they are today...
Story by Stephen Osmon
Coyotes’ Story of the Great Spirit, from "TUMBLEWEEDS' TALES:
Ghost Towns and Town Ghosts"
Short Yet Semi-Happy Life of Zip the Dog by Mel Brown
Ever since seeing an old movie long ago titled “The Biscuit Eater”
I have been enamored of coon dogs. Something about their especially
soulful faces and incredible voices has always touched me deeply...
Dexter - From Underdog to Best of (Picture) Show by Ted R. Krueger
"Adena Lewis called asking us to bring our dogs to a casting call
for the movie "The Tree of Life" that was soon to be filmed in Smithville.
The director, Terrence Malick, wanted the "hero dog" (to be called
"Shep" in the movie) to be an untrained dog..."
Wolf Old Three Toe by Mike Cox
Green Carpet by Maggie Van Ostrand
Night the Ghost Hounds Came by C. F. Eckhardt
Perfection by Dianne West Short
A large, old black dog showed up on my sister Joanne’s doorstep,
thirsty and hot...
Drinks Water - Saves Town by Mike Cox
Just about everyone has heard the expression “sick as a dog,”
and most people have occasionally felt that way, but folks in
the town of Hubbard once credited their economic heyday to a sick
Pithy Tale of Owney, the Post Office Pup by Maggie Van Ostrand
Owney was a muttly terrier who rose from the ranks of the homeless
to celebrity status with his image on the newly issued U.S. Forever
postage stamp. His life was that of a courageous 19th-Century
pioneer pup, fighting the odds, if not the Indians...
Texas Traditions by Bob Bowman
One of the hottest controveries that ever erupted in East Texas
occurred in the sixties when several cities decided that dogs
ought to be stopped from running loose on the streets...
a difference a week makes by Peary Perry
Last week I wrote a column about Buddy, my pound pooch who was
in the hospital and not expected to live...
Gently Into The Long Night by Peary Perry
When I walked into the dog pound in San Antonio ten years ago
and saw that little gray dog that looked just like Tramp in the
movie ... “Lady and the Tramp” I should have kept on going...
whale of a tale? No - try wolves by Delbert Trew
The annihilation of the buffalo brought about many sad consequences...,
another species of the prairie, the Lobo wolf, was also annihilated...
Dogs by Peary Perry
By the time you get to be my age, you would think I would know
better than to do the following: ... buy someone a dog...
days of summer"
Reeves and Cheyenne by Bob Bowman
and the Great Escape by Maggie Van Ostrand
His story is much like anybody else's, filled with both sad and
joyous times, and a lot of luck — he didn't get out of Tijuana
by himself. He had the help of many, including angels, perhaps
Santo Toribio Romo Gonz·lez, Mexico's ghostly benefactor of "illegal
aliens," and a quick-witted grandmother.
A Pit Bull On My Knee by Clay Coppedge
My first dog was named Cisco in honor of a popular television
hero of the day, the Cisco Kid. The Cisco Kid and his trusty sidekick
Pancho rode the frontier fighting evil and injustice. In his own
way, Cisco did the same thing...
heros at the Battle of Adobe Walls by Delbert Trew
Rabbit Sets the Woods on Fire by N. Ray Maxie
Ark-La-Tex area sportsmen often enjoy hunting wild brush rabbits.
Some even make a specialty of it. Often folk are so ‘into it’
they get themselves a couple of Beagle hounds...
Have Ashes, Will Travel by Maggie Van Ostrand
Markus, my beloved canine companion who had been with me for over
14 adventure filled years, had passed away...
to Breed by Elizabeth Bussey Sowdal
Christmas Angel by Kathleene S. Baker
Sadie of Corpus Christi, sometimes it takes a dog to bring out
the best in humans.
by Mike Cox
When old “Hay-sus” died that winter afternoon, just about everyone
in Eagle Pass mourned.
by Peary Perry
My source is late; he’s never been late before. ... I can’t leave
without the package. My dog will never forgive me if I come home
by Maggie Van Ostrand
She was a blue-eyed creature of enormous beauty, so beautiful
that she was named after a Greta Garbo film heroine. You'd be
proud to take her anywhere, as she was always perfectly attired.
She was a magnificent Siberian Husky.
figure in life's fondest memories by Delbert Trew
for Each Other by Maggie Van Ostrand
Certain living things are meant for each other, whether it be
a caballo and a canine, or a lady and a lake.
the East Texas Chow by John Troesser
The "Junk Yard Dog" as Teddy-Bear
in Church by Murray Montgomery
Vintage Wit from Gonzales County
The Panhandle Chihuahua
The Friendliest Dog on the Red River
Don't Kill Brownie." Excerpted from The Kountze News
Like they say in East Texas, this might just make your eyes sour
up a little.
Poems by David Knape
Tail Of The Dog
boy, A dog
Cartoons by Roger T. Moore
by C. F. Eckhardt
This is gonna come as a surprise to a lot of folks, but armadillos
are not native to Texas. In fact, the very first armadillo ever
identified in the Lone Star State apparently crossed the Rio Grande
near Brownsville in 1859...
Owl by Bonnie Wroblewski
Standing 16-25 inches tall and with wingspans of up to 4ft, these
large, ear-tuft-less raptors are commonly known as the eight hooter
or rain, hoot, striped, or wood owl...
Crane by Bonnie Wroblewski
Honored as symbols of marital fidelity and conjugal bliss throughout
Southeast Asia,... gruids have a celebrated reputation for monogamy
in folklore as well as in scientific investigations.
of My Shell at South Padre by Jase Graves
"[W]hen my family and I were on vacation at South Padre Island
recently, I jumped at the chance to witness a release of newly hatched
Kemp's ridley sea turtles by Sea Turtle, Inc., an organization devoted
to the conservation of all marine turtle species-and to the sleep
deprivation of turtle-crazed tourists...." more
Box Turtle by Bonnie Wroblewski
Determinedly plodding across grazed pastures, open woodlands, prairies,
and sandy-soiled lowlands across Texas, ornate box turtles are so
named for the distinctive yellowish lines radiating across the dark
brownish to black background of their carapaces...
and Bat Bombs
by Clay Coppedge
Little Engine That Couldn't: The Fredericksburg & Northern Railroad
by C. F. Eckhardt
"...The tunnel is still there, all 920 feet of it inhabited,
in the fall, winter, and spring, by millions of bats. The bat
flight from the tunnel at dusk resembles rising smoke...."
in the Red, and Brazilian Bats by Mike Cox
"Some three million Brazilian free-tailed bats live in the
abandoned tunnel from May through October each year, along with
a much smaller population of Cave myotis bats."
Bird Lake, formerly Town Lake, Austin
Sinkhole State Natural Area - Rocksprings, Texas
The Devils Sinkhole is the largest single chamber cavern in the
state of Texas and third deepest measuring over 350 feet deep.
The cave is home to 1 to 4 million Mexican-Free tail bats
during the summer ...
Big Bang at Blowout by Michael Barr
in the Belfry by Frances Giles
Bombs "Moore Texas Cartoon"
by Mike Cox
Does a zoologically unknown, blood-sucking creature prowl the
South Texas mesquite?
of Texas Animals