Forty years at El Paso, 1858-1898; recollections of war, politics, adventure, events, narratives, sketches, etc., by W. W. Mills. Page: 22 of 163
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FORTY YEARS AT EL PASO.
ern Pacific, the Mexican Central, the "Sunset" and the
Does the tenderfoot who now rides over these routes,
in luxury and safety, appreciate the work of these men?
I have heard more than one of them intimate that he
would have done things much better than we did, if he
had only arrived in time. I am very sure I have heard
several of them say that they would have made and
saved plenty of money, if they had only had our opportunities;
and this appears to me the proper place for a
few remarks on success and failure in life; if, indeed,
any place is good for such a homily. By success I, of
course mean what the majority of men mean by the
word success-the accumulation of wealth.
Well, during the ten years following my locating at
El Paso, I was well and familiarly acquainted with at
least fifty active, intelligent, educated young men, of
whom it might have been predicted that they would
succeed in life. These, if now living, would all have
more than three-score years. Several of them died by
the hands of the Indians, and some of them by the hands
of their own countrymen, a number went to the bad or
died early. Several of them lived beyond middle age
and led brave, honorable and useful lives, but I recall
only two who could be classed as successful men, according
to the above test. True, some of them gained much
money and spent it liberally and often charitably, or lost
it, but according to the popular idea, a man to be successful
must have plenty of money when he dies. And
though he leaves no minor children or dependents, his
neighbors will whisper at his funeral, "He died poor,"
in much the same tone as one might say, "He was
In order that the importance of these mail routes and
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Mills, William W. Forty years at El Paso, 1858-1898; recollections of war, politics, adventure, events, narratives, sketches, etc., by W. W. Mills., book, 1901; Chicago. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth6112/m1/22/?q=Forty%20Years%20at%20El%20Paso,%201858-1898:%20Recollections%20of%20War,%20Politics: accessed January 16, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .