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Fencing Public Domain

Fencing Public Domain image
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Public Domain
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Piof. Chas, E Lowrey, of tliis city. who went to Wyouiing soine months sinee, lias w ritten some interrestiiifr letters to the Boflalo Express in rerard to that country. We copy a portion in one letter in referente lo the vexed questinn of tcncinj; the. public ilonntln : In conneetiou with subject of the Incongruity of ex 8tmg legislation when applled to Wvoni'iiir, and hw the same is woiking rreat injurv to the exclusión of inilnetrii1!-, we ma.v iiiention the :iction of t OommUwioner of the Land Offloe in refeience to fcncfng of public doniain. A deal of credit is MippnMH tu be due liim trom tha tact that he Ii;im discovi red that severa] mllliOM f aeres of public 'lomaiti liave been fpnced by private individu i is. But ii II orders tor Mie Mtinl f felices liave been made without imv pOMtbla icfeicnce t the real needs of tlie interesttere, and of the fnct that In inany cases the felices arv huilt to louter the best interest-' of the country, and that by their indiseiiiniiiate remnval the true develomeiit ol the ti rritory may receive a setbick from wli ie h it may lake veuis lo recover. Inwbat I have said IsimplyconiI1 i in of the indiscriniinate rcnu'viil oj fe ces. There are fences that have do njfht to exist, and there are others, Ihit bicatie other fences exist, save the livew of thou a ds of cattle every yenr. Every larve cal Út coinpany wishes that there were not i In the territory they fence siniily as i matter of protectlon and, in a few cases tor hny, and assoon as prac tical will be glad to remove every obst acle to au open range. It is haidto teil to tho.e wlio are not familiar witli the owtiiadl ot liaiuJling ranjn Ikiw inucli felices iiiteifere wiili ihebusIneM, especiftlfy If these fcneea are allow.d simply lor the oonvenlence of the setller, and again liow inucli Chey conduce ti) diiuish loases when erected in plnoel wlure they can in no way intcifere witli the ranae. The cattle, of conjse, live on the rane all winter. Tliey li it learned huw to take care of theuiBclves, how ti keep fi-iini freezlag InaMoriB, how nul irhere to fc-ek bare spots for craziug. In tblt they nut po .-luve.sstnl as tin y tnight hc wera the titockraen illowed protection in the improvcments that might be m:ide for giiardiiijr these catlle; at present all safe dealers count on a loss ot 40 per cent. of the natural im-rease of the herd fvoin the varioiM smirres of loss n the winter season. This percentage li heen constanlly incieasing since the intro(liutioiiof felices. A person has luit to a half diy aoross the rau;e to ffet sonie idea of what these loases anioiint to, and how in muny c.ises they occur. At eV'-ry dilcli, or {rully, or Watering place, or lenee " pocket,'' may le seen tbx victinis of the sloiin anddtitt Mughl in iraps trom wliicli they did nut kmw how to extriCHte tlieinsi-lves. As hi'h as 75 of their .-keletons have heen counted in a fenca "pocket" r ra vine iieaped tofretiwr as the liona " diifted " thcin. It may be inore intelligihle to the comprehension ot how toch losses tinglit be avoided, to knuu lomHhltiy (il the movenientof these range cattle in a storm. Onr domotlj e. ttle in BtMt at once linddle together in n place of shelter. Thecittle here have learned that. to do M in this country nu-nn.s freezing to death in a shott t ine. Fuitlier, there are no lamlinirkin the storm lur mail, or btM and, as a rule, yon can see hut a few lee t befan yon, so giay and bttndlnjf is tlie storm. As símil as a sionn eninmences, no matter when, the "leaders" start n trail with the winti, folio wed na long Kring by the whole band in Ihat section. This is cal Ied "drlfilng." Catile wil] ofren trarel 40 riiile-t in one dav in this wnv - a storm was ou froni the northwesi a few d iys sinoe, and entile hy the thouutndt kipt the imii lillcil in nlmost au IMbroketl line for most of the ilay. Let any olistacle appear Itke H "fence pocket" or a gorge una the cattle become bewildered and stiiy there like "men when loat " until they perifth fnun tlie weallier or want of food. Suppose in case of t " drilt" two enterprisma uei:lilors have taken p leaslou ¦ il n, e iniinlli of some ot little vallevs, and for uit purpoM of their own conven iencc have brought two fences togother in the simpe ot a V in the direct line of t 1 ¦ } - . "drift, sMyfrom noith to south, wit.h water possibly but a few rods from the vortex, wliieh, on near approacli, the cattle Mant and haten forward tu. li needs no exphination to teil wliat i catastioplic happens to the bewildered cattle at a tempeiature of 20 below cm and the wind m 30 miles eitioiiror more. HeNire the stoiin closesthe weaker ones hiivepeiished. The olhers move out, niiich weakened by this unnece8ary exposuie while tlie trap rcmitins for the next "drilt." The neiv'lil)ors are liinilered (romdoing aiiytlilngto pi.u mis n uiiuii iuïb .uuuiilisti mev [;ivc all tlie land they can posesa and Uncía 8am owns the V and does nut allow ihcni to close up the gap. Soine of the slockmen, Ineented by the loss of cattle, closes up ( V and niakes it so il uvoiils future diingev. Onr futhers at Washington at once learn of the dcprcdation and order the tenue down. II ui it reiiiHined the ncijfhbora would have cut the yrass opon the eneloaed ren poMlbly, or pattarad it and tli tis have hen lu.iterially beneflted in hard Itruggl t"r exi.sleiiee, iind the cattle iiihii Witltkl have heen saved liirther loss, and, as the ]enjle are the natioti, "Unelö S:im " richtr. Thl 8 to Iliistiate bilt one of' the inconvenienies of l'ences. L'ind available lor MMtlenient s also very likely to cross the patb Dl gntat cattlü trails, mul it occupancy 8 ofien a source of aniioyance to "ouitits" in inuklny the Ir "rpuudups" of cuttlc fur iiiarkini; and ma i k-t. There smiothi'r pbase t tlic lenco hnsiM8 th.-it our fatherxat Wirthlngton seem to OVerlook. All the hneiind erv at WhhIilagtoB aml in cisi jg Mint the biLcattle kiuaa he checked lor toke ot the actual ai'ttler. N'ow the UkÜig down of all laooM would be to the acpeotal benefit of the Kloek men, as we haveseen, save in Uu' cases lor protection. Hul strange as it may seem to hd outsider, it is the poor nmn who must sulfer most hytliis order. The farmer who hm ii small herd, which lie does not dare to turn loma upon the range lest they t.e lost In the vast numbers, or be at the marcy of CUlu tlllevw who arecareful to avoid uil larre brands, becatme the Stook Assooiatlon of cattle-men have out private lnpeetors to take care of their interexts at all towiiH and sliippinjrports. I say the small herdtman who lias uis little farm along the creek.and cuts hay for his weaker cows and calves, has often fenced in severa) square miles of the range adj:icent to htf raacli so as to avold the expense of joining the Stock Assoclation and of keeping an "outfit" of" cowboy" to look atter bis interest. Now it is' virtually taking the opiortunity of dolng anything in the cattle busltiesi from these men, to deprive themofthe privilege of fencingthat which is lio use to thein unless fenced, and no earthly fjood to anv one else from lack of access to water. I can say without fear of coiilradiction that it Is not the large ranch compauie8 who are most annoyed bv the tinenta nf repeal of laad HCts umi orders to remove fences, but the little men who hnve honestly won possegsion to a foothold on the 8tream, and by virtiie of this hnve really posession of tbeaurrnundlng range, but wliich 011 ai'count of laok of nxaris thoy rannot use without the fenee. Ol coume the jr.ivernnient whb very foolish to allow Diese streauin to be taken up in siich a way that it, the government, could not po8ibly geil the remalning iiiillious of acres to any one at any price undrr existing laws, or lease either to otlter tban the partlea possesaing the water, or sell undur any laws. But si nee the mistake has been allowed to run without question, why render entlrely úseles lam) upon wliii'h, by mere virtiie of fenre-, the pirties who have so done liave plaoed mach more value than the land la possibly wortli to the ioveninieiit? Begidea, it deprive the settler of hls mal u nnans of a livelihood.


Ann Arbor Courier
Old News