Chisholm Trail Ballad
Come along boys and listen to my tale
Tell you of my trouble on the old Chisholm Trail Come a ki yi yippee yippee yi yippee yay Come a ki yi yippee yippee yay
– Words adapted by Woody Guthrie
From 1867 to 1884, more than 5 million head of cattle and a million mustangs moved along the Chisholm Trail from South Texas across Indian Territory in Oklahoma to railheads in Kansas.
The 150th anniversary of the trail is celebrated in an exhibit at the Sid Richardson Museum at 309 Main St. in Sundance Square in downtown Fort Worth. And the museum has announced that it is extending the “Hide & Horn on the Chisholm Trail” exhibit to Sunday, Aug. 17.
Admission is free, and visitors can view rarely seen items from the cattle trail era in the museum’s permanent collection and “Guests of Honor” on loan from the Rees-Jones Collection in Dallas and from another private collection.
The Texas State Historical Association says that after the Civil War, the growing demand for beef was supplied by Texas Longhorn cattle, which were sturdy and able to graze on whatever plant material was available and were particularly suited to cattle drives. The trail was named after the Scot-Cherokee trader Jesse Chisholm.
“Predating the arrival of the train and discovery of oil, the Chisholm Trail era was an indispensable, early chapter in Fort Worth’s history,” Mary Burke, director of the Sid Richardson Museum, said in a news release announcing the extension. “Being a waypoint along the trail spurred the city’s early growth and helped define its Western heritage, which even today differentiates Fort Worth from any other city.”
The museum – named for legendary Texas oilman and philanthropist Sid W. Richardson – was established in 1982, and features paintings by Frederic Remington and Charles M. Russell of the 19th century American West during westward expansion. It is open daily except for major holidays. Docents lead free public gallery tours each Tuesday and Saturday at 2 p.m. On the second Saturday of each month at 3 p.m., the gallery tour is followed by a live performance of a docent portrayed as Nancy Cooper Russell, wife of Charles M. Russell, telling stories about his career.
– FWBP Staff