Return to 1882 horseplay at Great Western Cattle Drive
Enjoy authentic 1882 horseplay with the cowboys as they celebrate 106 years of America on July 4 in northeast Sherman County. The Second Annual Commemorative Great Western Cattle Drive will roll at historic Homestead Ranch 19 miles northeast of Goodland, Kansas at 4 p.m. Mountain Time. This living history event has added a farrier demonstration. The demonstration will show visitors how the important task of shoeing horses was done on the trail as well as other related activities from the era.
“Last year, over 200 people enjoyed the cattle drive,” Trail Boss Ken Klemm said. “We look forward to seeing old friends and new faces this year.”
After attending the cattle drive, head to Sherman County Fairgrounds, 417 N. Main, Goodland, for Freedom Fest. Carnival rides begin at 6 p.m., entertainment at 7 p.m. and fireworks at 9:30 p.m.
In 1882, cowboys drove great herds of longhorn cattle to rail heads in Ogallala, Neb., and points north along the Wallace Branch of the Great Western Cattle Trail. The Wallace Branch extended into Canada. It’s the cattle trail portrayed in the novel and TV miniseries “Lonesome Dove”. Homestead Ranch’s site once held Bray Post Office, Sherman County’s first. The ranch was also home to a water hole. Cowboys driving the great herds of longhorns north stopped at the Bray Post Office, the first post office north of Dodge City, to get news from home.
The National Park Service is considering the Great Western Cattle Trail for National Historic Trail status. The trail is a feature on the newly designated Land and Sky Scenic Byway.by