The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 81, July 1977 - April, 1978 Page: 46
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
consuming work that can ruin your health. For this work the farmer
necessarily uses a riding horse, which is absolutely indispensable.
It is true that you have to provide shelter and winter feed for only a
few weeks. On the other hand, you must not resent it if your cattle run
away ten, fifteen, or more miles when a norther blows in, and then often
cannot be found again. From many farmers I heard that they often
have to do without milk and butter in winter. For that reason a start is
being made with stall-feeding of a few cows in winter.
Many ranchmen have large herds, but when Bracht says on page 89
that "only a few planters know even the approximate head count of
their herds," I must say that at least almost all German farmers belong
to these few.
A good cow costs sixteen to twenty dollars at the present time. The
so-called muley cattle are much sought after because of the absence of
horns. In addition to this type of cattle, you find the American and the
Mexican breeds. The former is tamer, the latter tends to become wild.
Oxen are no less important than cows to agriculture. They are almost
indispensable for breaking the land and they are also used for drawing
wagons, as was mentioned earlier. If they are worked constantly, they
are fed corn to supplement grazing. Now and then I also saw oxen with-
out horns.133 A yoke of good oxen costs between forty and fifty dollars,
and especially well built and well trained ones will surely cost more.
There are several types of horses. As long as they are not used for
work, they need very little or no special care and attention because the
pastures provide them with their needs. Besides the American horse,
which costs one hundred to one hundred thirty dollars and more if it is
young and good, there is the pure Spanish horse, which is priced about
the same or even higher. This type of horse is raised mostly in Mexico.
The Mexican horse, which is very hardy and makes out on ordinary
feed, can be bought for ten, twenty, thirty dollars or more. The mus-
tangs cannot be used much because they rarely become entirely tame.
You can buy them for five to ten dollars, but as a rule they run off if
they have not been thoroughly tamed. Catching and taming them is
breakneck work, and it is performed mostly by Mexicans.
Mules, the American as well as the Mexican kind (I don't mean don-
keys), are seen very frequently. They are preferred to horses on long
trips. They are hardier than horses, although they almost always remain
1331t is highly improbable that there were any hornlets ot mulcy \Cen used fi o pulling
plows or wagons. Most likely they were dehorned.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 81, July 1977 - April, 1978, periodical, 1977/1978; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101205/m1/64/: accessed July 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.