How to Get Rich on a Texas Cattle Drive follows the adventures of a 15-year-old cowhand on the famous Chisholm Trail through Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas, as he battles stampedes, rustlers, angry Comanche braves, territorial Kansas farmers, and half a continent’s worth of dust. With a combination of tongue-in-cheek humor and actual historical detail, this fictional account draws from the personal accounts of cowhands who drove cattle from the plains of Texas to the railheads of the Midwest in the 1800’s to capture the American drive towards success and riches.
Just why my father moved, at the close of the civil war, from Georgia to Texas, is to this good hour a mystery to me. While we did not exactly belong to the poor whites, we classed with them in poverty, being renters; but I am inclined to think my parents were intellectually superior to that common type of the South. Both were foreign born, my mother being Scotch and my father a north of Ireland man,—as I remember him, now, impulsive, hasty in action, and slow to confess a fault. It was his impulsiveness that led him to volunteer and serve four years in the Confederate army,—trying years to my mother, with a brood of seven children to feed, garb, and house. The war brought me my initiation as a cowboy, of which I have now, after the long lapse of years, the greater portion of which were spent with cattle, a distinct recollection. Sherman’s army, in its march to the sea, passed through our county, devastating that section for miles in its passing.