The Loose Herd

“In addition to wagons, teams, and necessary harness, the journey demanded much else . . . Extra cattle were usually driven along in a ‘loose herd,’ for spares and for a supply of fresh meat. Herders then had to be assigned, one man to thirty cattle. Herding was trying and disliked work. The cattle frequently strayed and occasionally stampeded, and always they had to be guarded against the Indians. Some people judged a loose herd to be more nuisance than it was worth.”