Famed cattleman Charles Goodnight established one of the first ranches in the Texas Panhandle, the JA Ranch, in 1876. Later that year Thomas S. Bugbee established the first cattle ranch in Hutchinson County.
As a result of soaring beef prices cattle ranching proliferated in this region of the U.S. In the 1880s, the Texas Panhandle, with its open range and expansive grasslands, became the preferred winter grazing site for cattle migrating south from Colorado, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Kansas. This seasonal influx of cattle disrupted the practice of area ranchers who went to great lengths to respect adjacent ranch boundaries.
Members of the Panhandle Stock Association pooled their resources and in 1882-85 erected barbed wire barriers along a 200-mile stretch of the panhandle Including Hutchinson County to prevent cattle from drifting south into the fertile Canadian River Valley.
The "drift fence" worked too well in the winters of 1886 and 1887 when thousands of cattle moving south ahead of strong storms stalled at the fence line and froze or were trampled to death. The staggering losses prompted
Sesquicentennial of Texas Statehood 1845—1995
Erected 1994 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 14964.)
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Industry & Commerce.
Location. 36° 1.388′ N, 101° 13.823′ W. Marker is near Stinnett, Texas, in Hutchinson County. Marker is on County Road 22, 0.1 miles north of Farm to Market Road 281, on the left when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Stinnett TX 79083, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 13 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Holt School (here, next to this marker); Holt Cemetery (within shouting distance of this marker); Adobe Walls Battle Ground (approx. 9.7 miles away); a different marker also named Drift Fence (approx. 10.7 miles away); Lindberghs Land at Spearman (approx. 10.8 miles away); Santa Fe Railroad Stationmaster's House (approx. 12.2 miles away); Spearman (approx. 12.3 miles away); Robert E. (Bob) Martin (approx. 12.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Stinnett.
Credits. This page was last revised on August 23, 2020. It was originally submitted on August 23, 2020, by Allen Lowrey of Amarillo, Texas. This page has been viewed 120 times since then and 25 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on August 23, 2020, by Allen Lowrey of Amarillo, Texas. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.