One day in 1847 he met his friend E. C. McCarty, wholesale merchant at Westport. “How would you like to try the freighting business,” asked McCarty. “I’ve several customers in Santa Fe who have always run small trains of their own. Now they want somebody to take their goods out under contract.” The idea of trying something new always challenged Russell. “Bullard & Russell will do the job if you will be a partner in it,” he said.