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Cattle Trails

Updated December 05, 2004

These were among the first included in our old "Trails Linking the West" page and although they were a relatively short-lived phenomenon I have chosen to keep them as the site has expanded to cover the continental United States. This worksheet is far from comprehensive, and there are many entries for which I haven't yet found an online map.  If you have similar sites to suggest, please write to Sharon McAllister.  

 

Beefsteak Trail The nickname of the country's last regularly-used cattle trail, the Magdalena Livestock Driveway.  Herds from eastern Arizona and western New Mexico were driven along this trail to Magdalena, where they could be shipped to market. 

Chisholm Trail  Extensive website devoted to the Chisholm Trail from Texas through what is now Oklahoma to Kansas.  The main Trail crossed the Red River near Ringold TX and went almost due north to Kansas.  There was a branch that followed the north side of the North Candian River to Dodge City, KS. 

Chisum Trail From near Paris, TX, through the southern part of the Texas Panhandle, curving southwest to meet the Pecos River south of Carlsbad, then north through Roswell to Ft. Sumner.   The Goodnight-Loving Trail followed the same path through the Pecos Valley. Another trail led west from the Chisum Ranch at Roswell, southwest through the Hondo Valley, across the Tularosa Basin, over the Organ Gap and on into Arizona.  A detailed Historical Account [broken link] includes a map of just the main part.

East Shawnee Trail  The more recent name for the first major cattle trail from Texas to Kansas, which was sometimes called the Texas Road.  It crossed the Red River at Colbert's Ferry and passed near Fort Wichita and Fort Gibson, and crossed into Kansas near the Missouri border.  There was a branch that led northward from Fort Gibson (on the west side of the Grand River), which met the original trail at the Kansas border,  and one that led northwest (north of the Arkansas River) to meet the West Shawnee Trail in southern Kansas.

Goodnight-Loving Trail  From Ft. Worth, southwest to meet the Pecos River south of Carlsbad, then north through Roswell to Ft. Sumner.  The Chisum Trail followed the same path through the Pecos Valley. Go to the Home Page for an extensive historic account, or go straight to the Map.

Great Western Cattle Trail  Cattle trail through western Oklahoma, linking Bandera TX with Dodge City, KS. Historic account.

Magdalena Trail The country's last regularly-used cattle trail, formally known as the Magdalena Livestock Driveway.  Herds from eastern Arizona and western New Mexico were driven along this trail to Magdalena, where they could be shipped to market. 

Oklahoma Cattle Trails This particular map highlights the Chisholm Trail, but includes others through what is now Oklahoma.

Old Doan Trail  Another name for the Great Western Trail. 

Old Dodge City Trail  Another name for the Great Western Trail. 

Old Texas Trail  Another name for the Great Western Trail.

West Shawnee Trail  The second major cattle trail from Texas to Kansas, which followed the Texas Road from the Red River to Boggy Depot then struck northward through the central part of the state.   History & map

 

Related Links

"Famous Cattle Trails"  provides a detailed account of the major trails from Texas through Oklahoma to Kansas.  

 

Cattle Trails Explorers Forts Native Trails Wagon Roads

 

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Updated 6/1/2006

Questions or comments?  

E-mail: Sharon McAllister

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