Texian Stomping Grounds Page: 61
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RANCHO BUENA VISTA
the brush country of Texas-and also in the border country of
Mexico. The traditions pertaining to Buena Vista that have been
told over and over among the children and grandchildren of
Florencio Guerra and his wife, Josefa Flores, are the kind of
traditions to be heard all up and down the border country.
Some of them, perhaps a majority of them, treat of actual
happenings, and are folk-lore only in that they are traditional
and that they are hardly important enough for history. The
stories are of Indians, floods, captives, sheep herders, buried
treasure, violent death, happenings when the Bishop came or
the wool went to town. When a fire burns on a winter night or
when it is raining and the water in Becerra Creek is high, people
at Buena Vista tell and hear these traditions of the land.
Ever-present in the minds of ranch people is the question of
water. The foremost topic of conversation among them is the
condition of the range, the prospect of rain, the water of the
tanks. This part of the country has never found good well
water to pump up with windmills, and tanks are depended on
for stock water.
In the old days there were no tanks. The cattle watered at
the two or three creeks in the country. In time of drouth they
were driven the eighteen miles to the Nueces River. There
was never trouble over water rights. Through the years these
ranchmen kept the peace among themselves; the struggle with
Nature occupied their chief energies. The first fence went up
in 1891. Don Florencio's son, Donato, used to go out of his
way before and after school to watch the fence-building opera-
tions being carried on by the Callaghan Ranch hands, who
were erecting a fence between Buena Vista Ranch and theirs.
Three times in the history of Buena Vista Ranch La Becerra
Creek has been half a mile wide-in 1878, 1903, and 1937. Of
course, the oldest flood is the most romantic. Don Justo and his
wife were still living then, old and set in their ways. Their ranch
house was of mesquite poles and adobe, thatched with grass
and set on the very banks of La Becerra Creek.
One day it started to rain; torrents poured down. As the
Here’s what’s next.
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Dobie, J. Frank (James Frank), 1888-1964. Texian Stomping Grounds, book, 1941; Dallas, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc67663/m1/69/: accessed April 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Press.