We hope you are planning on joining us at the Great Western Cattle Trail Association of Nebraska annual meeting in Champion.  Following is the agenda. 

See you there!

 

 

Tue March 22, 2016

6:00 PM MT

 

Chase County Museum

Champion, NE

 

Agenda

 

6:00 PM MT Meal at the Champion School Bldg. $10.00 charge for the meal

 

7:00 PM Call business meeting to order…………………..…Harold Potthoff  & Ted Tietjen

 

7:05 Recognizing Marker Owners ………………………………………Marvin Large

 

7:15 Minutes from last meeting……………….……………………….... Pam Potthoff

 

7:20 Treasurers Report ………………………………………………… Bryan Trimble

 

7:25 Conference call to cover the National GWCTA meeting………...Mike Strodtman

 

7:35 Potential National Park designation?………………………….… Mike Strodtman

 

7:45 Kraisinger’s Update, Conference call ……………………………..Gary Kraisinger

 

7:55 Proposed Marker locations ….…………………………… Marvin Large/Tom Kraus

 

8:00 Availability of markers……………………………………………..Tom Kraus

 

8:10 How to handle marker expenses…………………………………..Marvin Large

 

8:15 Branded products, hat bands, Apps………………………..Ted Tietjen/Marvin Large

 

8:20 Election of officers………………………………………………….Harold Potthoff

 

8:30 Restricting mailing member addresses……………………………Pam Potthoff

 

8:35 Other items …………………………………………………………Board

 

Program

Crossing the Frenchman…………………………………………. Ken Ham

Wesley’s view of the trail (Subject to health)…………………….Wesley Wheeler

Introduction of special guests……………………………………..Harold Potthoff

History of Western NE…………………………………………….Vance Nelsen

 

Next board meeting in Benkelman………………………………..Gary Monson

Adjourn……………………………………………………………….

 

 

Nebraska

Great Western Cattle Trail Association

Nebraska Chapter

 

About forty historically-minded individuals attended the Second Great Western Cattle Trail Tour sponsored by the Great Western Cattle Trail Association of Nebraska (GWCTA-N) and the Hitchcock County Historical Society on Saturday. June 15th. With the CD of the 1995 Re-enactment of the Cattle Trail playing in the background, the event began with a brisket sandwich at the Northshore Marina, Trenton. Participants came from as far away as Fullerton and St. Frances, Kansas, to learn more about this exciting era of daring and determination.

 

On display at Northshore were prints from the book, The Western, showing the routes for the trail from Texas to Canada. These prints will be permanently on display at Northshore. Also on display was a large map prepared by Marvin Large of the Trail as it crossed Hayes, Chase and Keith counties. The Large farm, Imperial, was an overnight stop for cattle and cowboys on the Trail.

 

Harold Potthoff gave an overview of the history of the trail and various participants added stories from their experiences or studies. In 1874, Captain John T. Lytle and several cowboys left South Texas with 3,500 head of longhorn cattle and a herd of saddle horses. Five years later, the route Lytle cut out of the prairie to Ft. Robinson, Nebraska, had become the most significant and traveled cattle trail in history-The Great Western Cattle Trail.

 

Though less well known than the Chisholm Trail, the Great Western was longer in length and carried cattle longer than the Chisholm. It saw over seven million cattle and one million horses pass through Texas and Oklahoma to railheads in Kansas and Nebraska and was an important factor in developing the cattle industry as far north as Wyoming and Montana.

 

Although cattle drives through Southwest Nebraska ended in 1886, they continued through Colorado until 1893 when the cattle drive up the Great Western Trail crossed the Red River on its way to Deadwood, South Dakota, for the last time.

 

Two markers were placed in the 1930’s at Doan’s Crossing, the last place to get mail and supplies before entering Indian Territory. The project to mark the entire Great Western Cattle Trail was launched in 2003. The Nebraska chapter organized in 2012 and is just beginning to mark the Trail.

 

Rolland Hidy, Trenton, displayed a Colt revolver his father found in the 50’s while breaking out sod. The gun was lost during the 1990 tornado and Rolland recently found it again when his dog dug a hole. It is thought the gun was lost by a cowboy on the GW Cattle Trail.

 

A new marker placed on the Mary Ellen Goodenburger Farm just off Highway 34 at mile marker 358 was the first stop on the tour. A dugout, the first home of settlers, is located just to the northwest of the marker and is easy to spot by walking over the hill to the west.

 

Additional stops were made to the north on the Harold Potthoff farm in places where evidence of the Trail is apparent. This farm contains some of the deepest ruts from the Trail in the area. Another marker has been placed in the hills along County Road 715 where the Trail comes off the hills and into the valley.

 

A stop was made where the District 44 schoolhouse had been located. The trail passed through the same location. Of interest to many was the fact that the girls outhouse had a concrete foundation, very unusual from that era.

 

It was noted that two small children had been buried somewhere in the hills to the east of the schoolhouse. No details are known concerning the children but attempts will be made to locate the graves and mark them.

 

The final stop was in the valley below a steep hill where it is thought the Indians stampeded buffalo to kill for food. Two of the younger, adventurous participants, Eva Sandberg, Stratton, and Bailey Hidy, Trenton, displayed the old Pioneer Spirit by climbing the cliff.

 

The first marker in Hitchcock County was placed at Culbertson. As settlers arrived in the eastern part of the county, the trail moved to the west. These two new markers will help future generations locate the path of Great Western Cattle Trail.

 

Additional markers will be added by the GWCTA-N members in locations where the Trail continued to the north. It is hoped the markers will be used as a heritage tourism destination. Positions of the existing markers will soon be located on the GWCTA website, greatwesterntrail.com.

 

The tremendous interest in preserving this historical event has encouraged GWCTA-N to plan additional tours in locations to the north. For more information on the GWCT contact Co-Chairmen Ted Tietjen, 308-35-4336, or Harold Potthoff, 308-276-2548.

 

Dear Nebraska Great Western Cattle Trail

supporters and their spouses

 

The Western Cattle Trail Association of Nebraska will meet at North Shore (west of Trenton along Highway 34) on Wednesday, March 13th, beginning with a T-bone steak meal at 6:00 pm cst. at a cost of $20.00 (This includes the meal, coffee or tea, sales tax and the gratuity).

Advanced reservations are necessary for the meal. Please contact Pam and Harold Potthoff before Monday, March 11th, to reserve your meal.

 

Contact information:

coyotepp@gpcom.net

308-276-2548

308-737-7840

308-276-2424 fax

 

For those wishing to attend the meeting only, the meeting will begin at 7:00 pm cst. The meeting agenda is attached. Co-chair Ted Teitjen will share his slide show on the Great Western Cattle Trail in SW Nebraska.

 

We hope everyone will come and help make plans for marking the Great Western Cattle Trail.