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The Wests of Texas: Cattle Ranching Entrepreneurs

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Bruce M. Shackelford (Author)
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Hardcover  $25.99 Buy Now


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With The Wests of Texas: Cattle Ranching Entrepreneurs, noted author Bruce M. Shackelford recalls the story of forgotten Texas legends: The Wests of Lavaca County.

George, Sol, and Ike West grew up working cattle on the prairies of Lavaca County. At the end of the Civil War, George, the eldest, made his first trail drive, as so many Texans did. But unlike many who made the trip, George saw the venture as the business of moving cattle to market and became a professional drover. His brothers would follow in his footsteps.

Throughout the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the West brothers trailed herds on the Great Plains, amassed huge ranches in South Texas, built imposing homes in San Antonio, and even founded a town (George West). In their lifetimes their accomplishments were legendary, but today they have been largely forgotten. The West family's history and achievements are examined in this volume illustrated with photographs and personal effects from the family.

“What separates the careful work done by Shackelford and researcher Katherine Nelson Hall from many offerings on legendary families of Texas is his reliance not only on primary sources, letters, and ledgers, but also artifacts, paintings, and photographs the West family has painstakingly gathered and maintained over more than one hundred and fifty years”—from the foreword by Marise McDermott.

Bruce M. Shackelford is a nationally recognized authority on the history of the American West. Currently the Curator of the South Texas Heritage Center and the George West Trail Drivers Gallery at the Witte Museum in San Antonio, Texas, he has created exhibits utilizing the Museum’s important history collections on subjects from American Indian cultures to the history of horsemanship and the cattle industry in North America. In addition he frequently lectures on related topics and has written numerous articles, authored chapters for the books Black Cowboys of Texas and Texas Women on the Cattle Trails, and compiled Photography on the South Texas Frontier: Images from the Collection from the Witte Museum Collection.
Marise McDermott is President and CEO of the Witte Museum.