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J. O. Russell, and two uncles settled and built the first houses on the site of Denver, Colorado. This settlement was made in 1857, and the city was duly platted and named Auroria. W. A. McFaddin was president of the company, and Dr. L. J. Russell was secretary. Another uncle, Green Russell, mined the first gold in that section of Colorado.
In 1892 Mr. Russell was married to Miss Mattie E. Strickland of Tom Green county. Two daughters were born to them.
In my earliest boyhood days the great ruling ambition was to become a cowboy, and the information that my brother was to take up a bunch of cattle in Live Oak county my ambition was about to be realized, as I was to be a member. In March, 1883, we left Yoakum and went to George W. West's ranch in Live Oak county and took charge of 2,500 old cows and brought them to Lavaca county, where grass was plentiful. This was my first drive and no happier boy lived in the great state of Texas. These cows were ranged on the prairies now where the little thrifty city of Shiner is located. After this we were sent to the Bennett & West ranch in Jackson county to get 3,000 yearlings and brought them back with us. A few days after this we started on the trail with the herd, for the North Platte in what was then regarded as the very life itself of the cattle movements. The trip might well be called "The River Route," as we crossed practically every river of any importance in this country. The San Antonio, the Guadalupe near Gonzales, the San Marcos, the Colorado at Austin, the Brazos and Lampasas, the Pease at Vernon, the Red River .South Fork at Donner, Okla., the Cimarron, the Wichita and the Arkansas, all rivers of more or less importance and as there