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[Antelope herd at Big Bend National Park]
Photograph of an antelope herd at Big Bend National Park; more than fifteen antelope are running across a large grassy plain. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The wildlife is as varied as the land on which it feeds. During the hunting seasons, sportsmen come to kill mule deer and antelope. The casual traveler can usually spot both grazing in the pastures" (p. 11).
My Land, My Heritage, My Hope
Paper submitted to the Junior Historical Society state writing contest held by the Texas State Historical Society, discussing historical landmarks, landscape, and people of Marfa. This written speech accompanied photographic slides (noted in the text with slide numbers).
[Longhorn cattle in Big Bend]
Photograph of three longhorns in Big Bend ranch, standing in a fenced area in front of a desert area with a mountain in the background. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "His [Don Milton Faver's] entire herd of three hundred cattle was run off by the Indians, leaving him with only thirty or forty calves which were in a corral. From this meager beginning, he built a second herd of ten to twenty thousand" (p. 6).
[Fort Leaton ruins in Big Bend]
Photograph of a stone or adobe building that is part of the ruins of Fort Leaton ("El Fortin"), near Rio Grande, Texas. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Ben Leaton sold guns and ammunition to the Indians to kill the immigrants on the wagon trains. He then gave aid and shelter to the same immigrants at 'El Fortin.' He was called the 'Noble Desperado'" (p. 4).
[Big Bend landscape with mountains and trees]
Photograph of a desert landscape in the Big Bend area, including trees and bushes with mountains in the background. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The Big Bend really began to open up when in 1882 the Southern Pacific Railroad planned to lay rails through Ft. Davis on its way to the ocean. The city fathers didn't want the noise of the trains to disturb their beautiful, quiet town, and the plan was revised so the tracks would be laid twenty-five miles south" (p. 6).
[Big Bend desert landscape containing bushes and mountains]
Photograph of wildflowers and grasses in a canyon near Presidio County, Texas. There is a large bush of pink wildflowers in the foreground with green grasses and bushes behind. A rocky mountain range features prominently in the background and extends the width of the photograph. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Bluebonnets, our State flower, and sage bloom early in the year-round warmth in the Big Bend Park on the Rio Grande" (p. 2).
[Big Bend landscape with tractors]
Photograph of farm fields in front of a mountain range, located in the Big Bend area. Several tractors and wagons are visible on dirt roads around the fields and desert scrub is visible in the foreground. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The two to three hundred acres behind the mission have been given the title of 'the oldest piece of land continuously used for farming in North America'" (p. 4).
[Big Bend landscape with unidentified mountain peak]
Photograph of a desert landscape in the Big Bend area with a prominent mountain in the center. A dirt road is visible in the foreground as well as an unidentified building. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The city fathers didn't want the noise of the trains to disturb their beautiful, quiet town, and the plan was revised so the tracks would be laid twenty-five miles south" (p. 6).
[Carolina Borunda Humphries]
Photograph of Carolina Borunda Humphries cooking on a wood stove at The Old Borunda cafe. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Carolina Borunda Humphries has cooked on her wood stove in the kitchen at 'The Old Borunda' for many years. This restaurant has been in the Borunda family for three generations" (p. 13).
[Car and set from movie Giant]
Photograph of a set from the movie, "Giant" including the front of a stone mansion with a car parked in front. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The house used for the shooting still stands in the pasture where it was put together nearly fourteen years ago" (p. 12).
[American and Texas flags]
Photograph of a flagpole, viewed from the ground looking up with an American flag at the top and a Texas state flag below. A cloudy sky is visible above the pole. The image accompanied the conclusion of a written speech, with the caption: "To those who would protest the American life of challenge and accomplishment, I would remind them, our land has never been easy. [...] The land is rich, not only in landscape, but also in the heritage of those who have tried to tame it. This is My Land, My Heritage, My Hope" (p. 14)
[Big Bend cave painting]
Photograph of a Big Bend cave painting that includes a picture of a cave buffalo in the upper-left quadrant, a small picture of a buffalo in the upper-right quadrant, and a picture of a caveman in the lower-left corner of the photograph. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The climate changed, and food shortages caused the Jumanos to become buffalo hunters, as evidenced by this cave painting" (p. 3).
[Barren landscape with small mountains in Big Bend]
Photograph of a grassy, barren Big Bend landscape, with mountains in the far distance. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The chief engineer gave the honor of naming the newly-created water store to his wife, who was reading a Russian novel" (p. 6).
[Close up of Big Bend desert mountain]
Photograph of a large, rocky hill in a desert landscape in the Big Bend area. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "[According to an] Indian legend [...] After the heavens, the earth, and the living creatures had been shaped, the Great Spirit had a great accumulation of rocks and stony material left over. Even the Evil Spirit refused the pile, and so it became the mighty Big Bend of Texas" (p. 1).
[Carving of dinosaur]
Photograph of a statue artifact in the shape of a dinosaur. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Early man, who created these artifacts, entered West Texas while the mammoth roamed free" (p. 2).
[Marfa billboard]
Photograph of a billboard at the side of the road welcoming golfers to Marfa, Texas. The billboard has an image with a golfer, golf cart, and hold, with the text "Welcome to Marfa. Relax & Play the Highest Golf Course in Texas (Elevation 4882 Ft.), Bent Greens, Bermuda Fairways. Entrance to Big Bend National Park." A smaller sign underneath says "July 4-14, 1967." The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The golf course is one of the best in the state and encourages young golfers to pursue their interests" (p. 12).
[Hunter Gymnasium at Marfa High School]
Photograph of several unidentified students gathering near the Hunter Gymnasium at Marfa High School. There is a flag pole with the American flag and another flag in front of the building. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The students themselves take pride in their town by winning awards in nearly all activities. Junior Historians are creating a museum to honor their founders" (pp. 12-13).
[Three students in sweatshirts]
Photograph of three unidentified male Marfa students wearing hooded sweatshirts and sweatpants. Two of the students' sweatshirts have logos with the text "Marfa Shorthorns." The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Besides football, basketball, tennis, and golf wins, several members of the track team have gone on to higher competition" (p. 13).
[Outskirts of Marfa]
Photograph of the town of Marfa taken from a distance. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Marfa's twenty-five hundred citizens are a blend of three ethnic groups" (p. 13).
[Craggy desert landscape in Big Bend]
Photograph of a rocky desert landscape in Big Bend near Marfa, Texas. The landscape has sparse grasses and weeds; two hilltops are visible in the top right corner of the image. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "[John W.] Spencer tried horse and cattle raising, but because of Indians, failed" (p. 4).
[Windmill and ruins in Big Bend]
Photograph of a windmill on top of a small fort in Big Bend. Various sparse bushes surround it and a rocky hillside is to the right of the fort. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The presence of a United States Army fort in the Big Bend encouraged more settlers to ranch" (p. 5).
[Students with instruments]
Photograph of five Marfa High School students posing together in front of soundproofed walls; three in the front and two in the back. They are identified from left to right as: Beverly Webb (holding a sheaf of papers), Mark Covington (holding a euphonium), Marfa Gene LaLanne (holding a saxaphone), Delma Gonzales (holding papers or another instrument) and Gene Dempsey (holding a trumpet). The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The band members work many extra hours in perfecting their marching and concert material for contests" (p. 13).
[Ranch home in Big Bend]
Photograph of the front of the Cibolo ranch home in Presidio, surrounded by desert trees and landscape. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The first Anglo-American rancher in the Big Bend was Don Milton Faver. He established three ranch headquarters when he came in 1857. His first cattle were Mexican longhorns which he branded with a 'lazy F' on the left hip " (pp. 5-6).
[Coffield Park]
Photograph of the swimming pool and surrounding areas of Coffield Park, in Marfa, Texas. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Marfa citizens are very proud of their youth and realize that young people are the future of our country. Marfa citizens provide several facilities for warm weather enjoyment. The Marfa Lions Club takes care of the public pool during the summer. Coffield park provides a baseball diamond for Little Leagers" (p. 12).
[Photograph of Group of People Near a Pond]
Photograph of a group of people standing in front of a small body of water. The people are all dressed up, the women in long dresses (mostly white) and hats and the men in dark suits and hats. One or two men are on horseback to the right. At the far right of the photograph, there are several large trees and more trees in the background. Handwritten notes on the back of the photograph name a few of the people: "Estelle Bloys," "Ezra Cook," and "Miss Mabel Bloys."
[Photograph of View from Candelaria Hill Road]
Photograph of Candelaria Hill in the mountains of west Texas with a butte rising up out of the hill, taken from Candelaria Hill Road.
Building Structure
Photograph of a portion of an old deteriorating structure in West Texas. This photograph shows part of a wall with a window in it.
[Early railroad station in Marfa, Texas]
Photograph of one of the first railway stations in the Big Bend area. It is a long, one-story wooden structure with a two-story section on the far left. A carriage is parked outside the building. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The chief engineer gave the honor of naming the newly-created water stop to his wife, who was reading a Russian novel. She named the stop, Marfa, after the book's heroine. In 1882, Presidio County also contained the present counties of Jeff Davis and Brewster as well as Presidio" (p. 6).
[Student writing math problem on chalkboard]
Photograph of a boy writing out a math problem on a chalkboard and another student sitting at a desk, watching him. According to accompanying information, this photo was taken during a session when Cesar Vasquesz, a Marfa High School student was tutoring younger students. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Junior and senior high school students voluntarily tutor children in arithmetic, science, reading, and physical education without pay. This is a positive study in understanding and selflessness" (pp. 13-14).
[Indian cave paintings in Marfa]
Photograph of a cave painting containing eight vertical stripes on the wall, which may depict human bodies. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: “The Great Comanche War Trail led through Brewster County and into Mexico. Apache and Comanche warriors raided and plundered each other. Their paintings tell the story of their life in a land which defied them" (p. 3).
[Cowboy with horse]
Photograph of a cowboy adjusting the saddle on a horse, in front of a wood and wire fence. On the other side of the fence, there are several parked trucks, a windmill, and a second cowboy who appears to be on horseback. A desert hill is visible in the background. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Although modern inventions have made ranching easier, the truck can't compare to the cow pony when it is time for round-up" (p. 11).
[Picture of desert landscape]
Photograph of a rocky desert landscape with a mountain ridge (part of the Chinati Mountain range) in Presidio County, Texas. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The Big Bend is composed of the counties of Presidio, Brewster, and Jeff Davis" (p. 1).
[Photograph of Mrs. W. K. Livingston]
Photograph of Mrs. W. K. Livingston seated in a wooden chair in front of sheer curtains. A large piece of wooden furniture is partially visible on the right and has a candlestick on top. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Mrs. W. K. Livingston, a pioneer woman, was a member of the first graduating class of Marfa High School. She has lived all of her eighty-six years in this area" (p. 13).
[Picture of Big Bend desert landscape]
Photograph of mountain peaks outside of Alpine, Texas, which are part of the Davis Mountain range. A desert landscape and a grove of trees are visible in the foreground. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "This is a land which has fought against those who have tried to make it home since its creation" (p. 1).
[Close up of Big Bend area landscape]
Photograph of a rocky mountain ( part of the Davis Mountain range) behind a line of trees in the Big Bend area of Jeff Davis County, Texas. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "[According to an] Indian legend [...] After the heavens, the earth, and the living creatures had been shaped, the Great Spirit had a great accumulation of rocks and stony material left over. Even the Evil Spirit refused the pile, and so it became the mighty Big Bend of Texas" (p. 1).
[Bones and fossils in Big Bend]
Close-up photograph of woolly mammoth bones and fossils embedded in the soil, near Marfa, Texas. A red trowel is visible near the top of the image. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The land turned against the 'thundering lizards,' and the Age of mammals came upon the earth" (p. 1).
[Big Bend fossils and stones]
Photograph of seven stone items -- fossils of prehistoric shells and bones, and Indian manos (grinding stones) -- displayed on the bottom of a metal tub sitting on a grassy plain. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Water-dwelling dinosaurs, such as those related to the modern crocodile, and bird-like reptiles have been excavated from their rock prisons" (p. 1).
[Collection of bones and fossils in Big Bend]
Photograph of bones and fossils embedded in the soil, near Marfa, Texas. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "This beast watered at a lake which was once in the Big Bend" (p. 1)
[Collection of fossils in Big Bend]
Photograph of bones and fossils that have been partially excavated from soil, with a trowel in front of them on the ground. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "This beast watered at a lake which was once in the Big Bend. His feet were caught in the sticky mud, and the mammoth, unable to move, was preserved" (pp. 1-2).
[Badger at Big Bend National Park]
Photograph of a badger at Big Bend National Park. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Rattlesnake, badger, and Javelina make the dry, brushy areas their domain" (p. 11).
[Barren Big Bend desert landscape]
Pphotograph of a barren Big Bend crater. Several edges of the crater contain sparse tufts of grasslands and a mountain range is visible in the far distance. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "These Indians were primarily farmers, whose fields lined the banks of the now dry rivers and creeks. The sites of the Jumano pueblos are still a source of artifacts" (p. 3).
[Additional ruins of Presidio structure]
Photograph of Fort Leaton ruins in the Big Bend desert, near Presidio, Texas. Several wood support beams of varying lengths support the wall structure. A stone marker near the photograph's left quadrant describes the structure. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The mission was successful, and Christianized many of the tribes until the Padres were called back from this wilderness in the eighteenth century" (pp. 3-4).
[Canine artifact]
Photograph of an oval, white soapstone Indian artifact carved with the shape of a small canine. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The first tribe of Indians to be recorded were called the 'Basketmakers.' They quickly faded into the background with the coming of the Jumanos" (pp. 2-3).
[Collection of fossils and bones in Big Bend]
Photograph of rocks and mammoth fossils embedded in the soil next to tree roots. A pickaxe and large hole are visible near the top of the image. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "This beast watered at a lake which was once in the Big Bend. His feet were caught in the sticky mud, and the mammoth, unable to move, was preserved" (p. 2).
[Purple desert flowers]
Photograph of several bluebonnet plants (Lupinus havardii) in the desert near Marfa, Texas. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Bluebonnets, our State flower, and sage bloom early in the year-round warmth in the Big Bend Park on the Rio Grande" (p. 2).
[Tree in Presidio landscape]
Photograph of a tree and bushes in Presidio desert. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "El Apostol Santiago built, with Indian labor, a mission on the north side of the Rio Grande in 1684" (p. 3).
[Students playing in an outdoor athletic field]
Photograph of an outdoor athletic field, taken from across a Marfa street. Four unidentified Marfa High School students are practicing tennis. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Besides football, basketball, tennis, and golf wins, several members of the track team have gone on to higher competition" (p. 13).
[Desert flowers]
Photograph of yellow and purple wildflowers in the desert soil near Marfa, Texas. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Thorns are not the only dangers, as shown by these plants -- senecio and loco -- which are highly poisonous to livestock" (p. 2).
[Quail at Big Bend National Park]
Photograph of two quail standing on stones in front of brush and greenery at Big Bend National Park. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "Quail and dove seasons net a good time and a fine meal as well as controlling flock population" (p. 11).
[Rio Grande river near Big Bend]
Photograph of the Rio Grande River near the Big Bend area. Threes and brush are visible on both banks. The image accompanied a written speech, with the caption: "The first white man to enter the Big Bend area was the Spaniard, Cabeza de Vaca, who led an expedition in 1535. The later expedition of Antonio de Espejo left a better record of the Indians found along the Rio Grande" (p. 3).