He started a ranch there in the Bosque Grande, about 40 miles south of Fort Sumner. This statue of John Chisum was erected a few years ago and is currently located in the town's square. All rights reserved. Rogers Aston didn’t begin sculpting until he was almost 40 years old, and the props he used were certainly authentic. Every time I think of John Simpson Chisum, I think of the 1970 John Wayne movie Chisum, and Andrew J. Fenady’s theme song. On a historical marker, located north of Paint Rock on U.S. Highway 83, you can find a description of the surrounding range grazed by Chisum’s cattle. In 1879, Chisum’s cattle empire and influence stretched from his Lincoln County ranch near Bosque Grande on the Pecos River, to the territorial governor’s mansion in Santa Fe. Fought Comanches, rain and sand. I always pay my honest debts. The Roswell Museum and Art Center includes works by Peter Hurd and Georgia O’Keeffe, but my favorite gallery is the West of Beyond collection. Though highly entertaining, Chisum isn’t a classic movie, and Fenady’s probably better known for the theme song “Johnny Yuma” for his TV hit The Rebel, but Chisum—Fenady also produced and wrote the screenplay—has always been a guilty pleasure of mine. The…, Mike Meagher was one of the toughest lawmen in the West. Good Books: To Hell on a Fast Horse: Billy the Kid, Pat Garrett, and the Epic Chase to Justice in the Old West (Mark Lee Gardner); The Story of the Outlaw (Emerson Hough); John Chisum: Jinglebob King of the Pecos (Mary Whatley Clarke); The West of Billy the Kid (Frederick Nolan.). When the Civil War broke out, instead of joining the Confederate army, Chisum was placed in charge of cattle herds. Ending his partnership with Fowler, Chisum moved toward the Concho River country. Among the more recent are William A. Keleher, The Fabulous Frontier: Twelve New Mexico Items (1945; rev. If Chisum is taking his cattle to New Mexico, why would he cross the River Red? Before long, Chisum and his new associates had roughly 18,000 head of cattle. But the fight keeps going on. They placed stock on a range north of present Fort Worth and applied for a land patent. His empire grew, and then a little event called the Lincoln County War erupted. Cattle baron John Chisum’s influence on the economy and politics of the New Mexico Territory in the 1860s and 1870s extended to the halls of the Palace of the Governors (above) in Santa Fe when Lew Wallace was territorial governor and Chisum found himself embroiled in the bloody Lincoln County War. He’s usually portrayed as the fatherly or grandfatherly figure in movies, but Englishman John Tunstall, whose murder truly launched the bloody Lincoln County War, was not quite 25 years old when he was killed in 1878.
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