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of the big herd. They were one of the old King herds which had come in by way of Dodge City, Kansas, from the old coast country down in Southern Texas.
They wanted to walk, so we strung them out and headed for the old South Platte. When the lead cattle got to the bank of the river the boss said, "Now, Sam, don't let them turn back on you, and we won't have any trouble." We landed on the other side all O. K. and went through the valley and on through the town. Everybody in town was out to see the big King herd go through. I threw my hat back on my head and I felt as though the whole herd belonged to me.
When the lead cattle struck the foothills I looked back and could see the tail end coming in the river, and I told my partner, the right-hand pointer, that we were headed for the North Pole. We raised our hats and bid Ogallala good-bye. When the lead cattle got to North River it was an hour and ten minutes before the tail end got to the top of the hills. My partner and I threw the range cattle out of the flats and we had it easy until the chuck wagon came over and struck camp for noon, then four of us boys went to camp.
We had a highball train from there on.
We didn't cross the North Platte until we got to Fort Laramie, Wyoming. The snow was melting in the mountains and the river was muddy and no bottom to the quicksand. I was looking every night for a stampede, but we were lucky. The night we camped close to the Court House Rock, they made a jump off the bed ground, but that didn't count. I think they got wind of the old negro cook. This herd had come from the old King Ranch, away down in Texas with a Mexican cook. I told the boss that the next morning and he said he was almost sure that was the cause.
The North Platte River in places is more than a mile wide and it seemed to me when we reached the place we were to cross, it was two miles wide. The range cattle