Davenport, John Wesley 2002-04-16

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John Davenport discusses his early life on the east coast and his ambition to head west. He discusses his experiences as a ranch hand moving from ranch to ranch throughout the western United States as well as the majority of his time on the Matador Ranch in Texas.

General Interview Information

Interviewee Name: John Wesley Davenport

Additional Parties Recorded:

Date: April 16, 2002


Interviewer: Jill Stuver

Length: 01:40:33


Introduction; Family Background; Parents; Occupations; Dairy life; Left North Carolina; Wanted to go west; Family reactions; Good jobs; Electrician; Parents’ names; Born in Georgia; Tulia, Texas; Got a job near Happy, Texas; Went back to Tulia; New job in Dimmit, Texas; Travel time from North Carolina to West; Reason for moving; Wanted to have a ranch; 19 when moved to Tulia; Laid steel in Grain elevators; Next job was drilling water wells; Stayed in a hotel; Type of work; Very boring work; Day working; Drifted around the United States; Different types of work; Matador Ranch; Story of getting the job; Matador Ranch (continued); Wagon; Never modernized; Typical day at ranch; Split up ground; Drive the cattle; 8 or 9 hours; Turn horses lose; Poker; 15 cowboys; Different camps; Batch camps; Size of ranch; 300,000 acres; 600 sections; Worked all over the ranch; Brief history of Ranch; Henry Campbell; Never owned land; Matador Cattle Company; Scotsmen; Bought stockholders out; 10 corporations; Move headquarters; Boundaries of Ranch; Surrounded Matador, Texas; Economy during the time; Ranching was big business; Harm was screw worm; Screw Worm; Larva from a blow fly; Horrible for cattle industry; Roped because of worm; Smear 62; Black substance; Paid by the month; Once a month; Cattle on ranch; Replacement cows; Housing; No comfort anywhere; Hazards from land; How ranch affected area and today; Feed lots were all in Kansas; Built them in Texas in 60’s; Thought it was too hot; Land; Too dry; Fit for cattle; Overall experiences gained from ranch; Had a lot of fun; Lonely; Had to stay at wagon; Had to get along with everyone; Scott Family; Went back to Montana; Windmill work; Worked seasonal areas; How he met his wife; Born and raised in Turkey, Texas; Moved to Russellville camp; Drifting between ranches; Oklahoma; Race horses; Post, Texas; Back to Oklahoma; Diamond A ranch; Snow storm; Fall 1968; Summer of 1969; Transferred to Southern New Mexico; 1984 came back to Texas; Shoeing horses; Settled in Brownfield, Texas; Moved to Post, Texas; Publishing a book; Expanding on old book; Name of new book; “I Still Remember”.

Access Information

Original Recording Format:

Recording Format Notes:

Transcript: No transcript available

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