On the Lack of Women in the Texas Panhandle
There was a dearth of female companionship in the Texas Panhandle during the early days:
"When I came to Tascosa (about 1880) there were only three other American women in the Panhandle country west of Fort Elliott. They were Mrs. Charles Goodnight (he was a big cattle man), Miss Lizzie Rinehart and Mrs. Tom Bugby, wife of another big ranchmen ... There was a Mexican girl here in Tascosa, Senorita Piedad Romero, wife of the richest man around. She was called "The Belle of the Llano Estacado." She sure was pretty.
When I came here Tascosa was the only town in the western Panhandle of Texas. Where Amarillo is now there was a buffalo ranch then. The nearest town on the north was Dodge City, Kansas, 242 miles away ... Everything we used was freighted in from Dodge. That why needles cost 10 cents apiece, and it took a small fortune to buy enough material for a new dress. To the south there were only cattle trails that led down over the wild and unsettled plains to the cattle ranches along the Gulf Coast and to old Mexico. I've seen 10,000 cattle in one herd, all Longhorns, come driving up across the prairie to swim the Canadian River here, and go up to the railroad at Dodge Cty or up to summer in Montana. I've seen one-fourth million cattle swim the Canadian here in one year. Now look at it. The railroad came through; it missed Tascosa; towns sprang up along the line; people moved out from here and Tascosa died."
----- Ms. Frenchy McCormick, faro dealer and last resident of Old Tascosa, interviewed in the Kansas City Star, December 1930
Beauty is only skin deep but Texas is to the bone.