The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 32, July 1928 - April, 1929 Page: 35
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A History of the J A Ranch 35
In April, 1926, Mrs. Goodnight died and Colonel Goodnight
was left alone in his large ranch home, as they had no children.4
Only two of the men who came with Colonel Goodnight to the
J A Ranch in 1876 are living today. Walter W. Dyer, ex-wagon
boss on the J A Ranch, lives in Clarendon and J. C. Hughes owns
a ranch of his own near Quitaque, Texas. Sam Dyer, Lee Dyer,
J. C. Johnson, Dave McCormack and Archie Hugo are dead.
Colonel Goodnight was manager of the J A Ranch from 1877
to 1887. How well he succeeded in this capacity has already been
told. T. D. Hobart, present manager of the ranch, gives the fol-
lowing account of the other managers:
Mr. Goodnight was succeeded by J. E. Farrington who con-
tinued as manager of the property for three years; then Arthur
Tisdale was placed in charge for one year. He in turn was fol-
lowed by Richard Walsh, who became manager in 1892 and con-
tinued in that capacity until 1910.6 Mr. Walsh came out to the
ranch from Ireland in 1885. Beginning at the lowest round of the
ladder, he passed through the various phases of ranch work, until
he was fully equipped for the responsible managerial position he
later assumed. It remained for him to make the greatest impress
on the ranch in various ways, and wisely did he build on the
foundation laid by Colonel Goodnight. It was Mr. Walsh's ambi-
tion to build up one of the best herds of cattle in the country.
How well he succeeded in this is known to every cattleman. He
spared neither pains nor expense in trimming the herds and in
securing good blood. In 1901, a carload of J A steers won the
Grand Championship at the International Live Stock Exposition
in Chicago, and in 1904 another carload won the Grand Champion-
ship at the St. Louis World's Fair.
In the early nineties many settlers located on school lands on
the ranch. It fell to Mr. Walsh's lot to deal with them. This
he accomplished in a tactful manner, purchasing many of their
'Some time last year Miss Corine Goodnight (no relative of Colonel
Goodnight) of Butte, Montana, having read an account of Colonel Good-
night, wrote to him because of the similarity of names. In this way they
began a correspondence and Colonel Goodnight invited her to visit him.
At the time he was seriously ill. Miss Goodnight, who was a telegraph
operator, had a few days' vacation at this time, so she decided she would
accept the invitation. She found Colonel Goodnight seriously ill and
nursed him back to health. Out of this grew a romance which culminated
in their marriage in Clarendon on Colonel Goodnight's ninety-first birth-
day, March 5, 1927.
'Information relating to the rest of this chapter was furnished by Henry
W. Taylor, T. D. Hobart, J. W. (Johnnie) Martin, M. E. (Mitch) Bell,
Joe Horn, and J. W. Kent unless otherwise indicated.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 32, July 1928 - April, 1929, periodical, 1929; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101089/m1/39/: accessed May 1, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.