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he has so laboriously garnered. I think the higher and drier portion of western Kansas is in some respects superior as a winter stock range. The less rain falls upon the grass, the richer it will be. This is not a theoretical opinion. Stock that ranged on grass during the hard winter of 1860-61, which succeeded the famous “dry season," came out in the spring in better order than usual. The grass was short, but very nutritious - having cured on the ground. The time is not distant when the western portion of the state, one hundred by two hundred miles in extent, will be selected as the choice pasture land of the continent. Its altitude of twenty-five hundred to thirty-five hundred feet above the ocean level, makes the climate all that could be desired. It is plentifully watered for stock purposes, by springs and running streams, whose water is palatable to the herds and flocks, and upon the banks are small timber growths, and high bluffs for shelter. There are also stone quarries, from which houses may be cheaply constructed for the herdsmen.

“I think it true that every where in Kansas, a little hay ought to be put up as a safeguard against light snows, accompanied by wind, which may render grazing difficult for a few days at a time. Such snows occur every two or three years, in all the region we have been considering; but are much less severe in Kansas than farther north. Whenever they occur, great herders expect to lose more or less stock. It is one of the chances they take, and aggregate results for a series of years prove that with all the risks, the business is still very profitable. But in every part of Kansas there is grass in abundance to make bay. The wide bottoms afford from one to three tons per acre, even at the western limits of the state, and on ground as smooth as a floor, it is little trouble to put up hay with machinery. Perhaps half the year it would stand untouched, while stock fattened on buffalo grass.

But it is better to provide against contingencies, and if not used, it will keep over in good condition, if well stacked. The estimated amount that ought to be put up per head in the buffalo grass region is from four hundred to six hundred pounds. Among scores of experienced stock men, with whom I compared notes upon this subject, none set it higher than the latter figures.”

The following letters, relating, respectively, to the northern,

central and southern portions of western Kansas, written by gentlemen well known in their respective localities, will serve to confirm the foregoing sketch taken from Mr. Hutchinson's work. The following is from A. B. Warner, Esq., of Republic county : " Dear Sir - I send you a few facts concerning the northern part of the state, or at least that portion of it which has come under my personal observation. The portion I shall refer to is chiefly watered by the Republican river and its tributaries. These streams have many beautiful mill sites, and we think here it would be hard to find a portion of prairie country more highly favored in respect to water, notwithstanding it is in 'drouthy Kansas.'

About eighty miles west of this county, a tributary takes in to the Republican, called Prairie Dog, and a beautiful stream it is, having quite a belt of timber along its banks. Its bottoms are wide and fertile, and all who see it are in no wise sparing of their praise. There is yet little or no settllement along the stream, and none on the adjacent prairies, but there is strong talk of a settlement there in the spring White Rock is another tributary of the Republican and enters it about ten miles from where the last named stream crosses the western line of Kansas from Nebraska, and in range five, west. On its lovely bank, on lands the most beautiful eyes ever rested upon, we have taken up our abodes. Its line towards the head is a trifle south of west, and it is about sixty miles long. It has quite an abundance of timber, though not quite so much as Prairie Dog, and besides the stream is not so large. The waters of the latter run the year round, while those of White Rock, in very dry weather, will sometimes cease to run, though at all times it contains a sufficiency of pure water for stock. Its bottoms are very fertile, as well as the adjoining prairies. The former are all taken for thirty miles from its mouth, but of the latter there are thousands and tens of thousands of acres of as rich and beautiful prairie lands as ever graced a western state. The old inhabitants say they can get a living here easier than in any other place they ever saw."

The following letter is from Rev. Dr. L. Sternberg, a Lutheran clergyman of high standing, of Fort Harker, Kansas: “Dear Sir:- You desire to know if the plains are well adapted to butter and cheese making, and also my method. In replying to the

first inquiry, it may be proper to say that I am not prepared to speak of the plains generally. Portions of them may be barren and destitute of water and of natural shelter for stock. My remarks are intended to apply more especially to Ellsworth county, the eastern limit in this part of the state of the buffalo grass region. Whether a country is well adapted for stock and dairy purposes depends upon its grasses, water and climate.

“We have both winter and summer grasses. Our winter grasses are such as keep green, and grow somewhat during the winter, especially in sheltered places in ravines and near the banks of streams. They come forward very early in the spring so as to afford good pasturage, in this region generally about the middle of March. The principal variety ripens about the first of June, and resembles what we used to call the early June grass in New York. When green, it is sweet and tender, and cattle eat it with avidity.

“Our summer grasses may be divided into two classes, consisting of such as are only fit for grazing, and such as are also suitable to be cut for hay. The term buffalo grass includes the gramma grass, or the curled mesquit, both of them remarkably nutritious, even when ripened and dry, and affording almost as good pasturage in winter as in summer, but too short to be cut for hay. The blue joint is our principal grass for hay. It is the latest of our grasses in coming forward in the spring, only appearing about the time when our winter grasses are beginning to ripen. We have at present little more of this grass than is required for hay; but I am sorry to say that it is slowly but surely supplanting the buffalo grass. The milk produced from these grasses is remarkably rich, and our cows have access to no plants giving their milk an unpleasant flavor, except that, late in the fall, they sometimes eat a species of wild sage, giving it a bitter taste.

“Good water is a prime necessity for a stock and dairy country. It should be running water. Stagnant water affects the quality of the milk injuriously. Water drawn by band involves too much labor, and is too uncertain a reliance. Our river water, and that flowing from our numerous springs, is most excellent for stock.

Our climate is of a medium character. We are subject to occasional storms, when cattle need some natural or artificial shelter, and it may be some hay. Usually, however, they graze upon the open prairie, in winter as in summer. Thus far I have not been required to feed my cattle more than about a dozen times during the winter, and they reach the spring in fine order, unless they should be pulled down somewhat by some special cause, such as coming in too early. In summer our climate is not warmer than in more northern latitudes. However warm it may be during the day, our nights are invariably cool and refreshing. The heats of summer, therefore, interfere but little with butter and cheese making, to those who have a suitable place for the purpose, and I know of no reason why we may not compete successfully, both as to quality and quantity, with the dairymen of any part of our country.

"In the manufacture of butter, I am careful as to the condition of my cream, not leaving it to stand too long. I use the dash churn. I am careful to work out all the buttermilk, and yet not destroy the grain of the butter. This requires both experience and skill. The salt which should be of the purest kind, and about an ounce to the pound of butter, should be thoroughly incorporated with the butter, and dissolve in it. If the cream be too warm in churning, the butter will be of an inferior quality, and will readily soften in warm weather. The proper temperature is from fifty-six to sixty degrees. The coolor the cream, the longer the butter is in coming, but the beiter the butter.

The next letter is from Mr. Ernst Hohneck, a surveyor who has resided in western Kansas about fourteen years, and is entirely familiar with the country he talks about. This letter throws light upon the “desert” question. There has been great inquiry for that desert for several years, and of late it has come to be believed that the whole account of "a desert" was a stupendous humbug of ancient geographers. After describing various counties in that region, and showing that all are possessed of good water and good soil, with considerable quantities of timber, and coal opened of fair quality for fuel, he proceeds: “Rice county, south of Ellsworth, through which runs the Arkansas river and several tributaries, is, with the exception of timber, which is rather scarce, a most beautiful county, and contains, I believe, a greater per

centage of tillable land, than any other county in the state I know of. The southeast part is already somewhat settled, and a colony from Ohio is expected to settle on Plum Creek next spring. Cow Creek is also in this county. Around Fort Zarah, in Barton county, near the mouth of that fine stream where the Big Walnut empties into the Arkansas, the nucleus of quite a settlement is now forming, and about two hundred families are to settle along the river and Walnut next spring. The advance of a German colony, about ten families, settled eight miles above Zarah last spring, and raised quite a crop of corn, with pumpkins, melons, etc., without end. I have not a doubt but that the bottoms of the Arkansas river will turn out to be prodigious corn land.

“Walnut Creek valley runs in a westerly direction for over a hundred miles, with abundance of timber and water, and as fine bottoms as a man wants to see. The only drawback to the settlement of that part of our beautiful state may be Indian difficul. ties.

“In conclusion, let me give you the result of my observations during a residence of fifteen years in the state, the greater part of which I spent in the western part. "The story of the American desert, as far as it relates to that

portion of Kansas that lies north of the Arkansas river, is a myth, and never had any foundation. That “belt of land,” beyond which, according to early histories of Kansas, the desert commenced, exists only in imagination. True, there is a range of sandhills, from one to two miles wide, on the west side of the Little Arkansas, as far north as the mouth of Jarvis Creek, emptying into Cow Creek, and also another narrow range of sandhills on the west side of Cow Creek, from the Plum Butes, on the old Santa Fe road, extending, with intermissions, about ten miles north. But the land west of these hills is just as good as east of it.

“I suppose the idea of this desert originated in this way: During that season when the buffalo roam north in immense numbers, they eat the whole country so closely that it looks to the casual observer entirely bare, and devoid of vegetation. Buffalo and even horses, will find sustenance on this very ground, it being the nature of the buffalo grass to be continually growing, and the part next to the ground, almost in it, being the most nutritious

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