A Guide to the W. S. Ikard Papers, 1933-1935
Born in Somerville, Mississippi, William Susan Ikard (1847-1934), was one of five sons of Milton Ikard and Isabella Tubb. Ikard lived with his family in Louisiana for a short time before relocating to Texas in 1852. Nicknaming himself "Sude," Ikard learned to farm and ranch and fought with local Native Americans in several conflicts. Although Ikard was only 16 years old, in 1863 he joined a militia to protect the northern Texas frontier during the Civil War. Following the war, Ikard and his brother Elisha employed themselves in rounding up stray cattle in Parker County, to return to the owners for a dollar each. Eventually accumulating a herd, the Ikard brothers made cattle drives up the Chisholm Trail from 1867 to 1874. In 1871, Ikard and his brother helped establish the town of Henrietta, and four years later, they purchased property in Charlie and established a ranch, which flourished until a drought in 1881.
In 1877, Ikard married Mary Kate Lewis, with whom he had eight children. His profitable ventures allowed him to purchase large tracts of land near Wichita Falls and in Clay and Archer counties. Establishing Circle Ranch in Archer County around 1883, Ikard entered into partnership with three of his brothers, and they became the first ranchers to fence their land in northern Texas. In addition to being one of the founders of the Cattle Raisers Association of Texas (currently the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association), Ikard helped found and was the first president of the Texas Hereford Association.
Blackman, Joseph Andrew. "Ikard, William Susan."Handbook of Texas Online. Accessed January 28, 2011. http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fik01.
Composed of four typescripts of reminiscences, the W. S. Ikard Papers, 1933-1935, document Ikard’s experiences as a young boy moving from Mississippi and Louisiana to Texas, as well as his life as a cattle driver and rancher in north central Texas in the 1870s and 1880s. Additionally, the collection contains the reminiscences of his wife, Mary Kate Lewis Ikard, which also recounts her husband’s life story.
This collection is open for research use.
W. S. Ikard Papers, 1933-1935, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
This collection was processed by W. H. Richter, August 1966.
Basic processing and cataloging of this collection was supported with funds from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Briscoe Center’s "History Revealed: Bringing Collections to Light" project, 2009-2011.
Detailed Description of the Papers