Posted by: wendyquest | April 14, 2011

Cattle Ranching – The King Ranch of Texas

King Ranch Emblem

It’s difficult to discuss cattle ranching without mentioning a few examples of successful ranches that were built in the 19th century but still exist today.

One of the best examples is the King Ranch located in south Texas.
Originally founded in 1853 by the resourceful and determined Captain Richard King who ran a successful steamboat operation which funded the ever-growing ranch in its early stages. His strong wife, Henrietta, helped to run and oversee the ranch during her husband’s absences, while also bringing a sense of gentility and class to a normally dirty and crude business.

The ranch has faced several adversaries (such as drought and the Texas Fever Tick) but it perservered through inventions and opportunities (such as drilling for water and creating a dipping vat to soak cows in solution to kill the ticks).

The King’s upbreeding (improving the breed) programs have gained global recognition and the improvements have led to the creation of new breeds, such as the famous cattle brand, Santa Gertrudis. By continually improving their animals, they can get better quality of beef, less sicknesses, and overall healthier animals.

The brand of the King Ranch is the “Running W” (which looks like a snake)

Today the ranch spreads over 825,000 acres which includes 60,000 heads of cattle and 300 horses.

Click here King Ranch to learn more about this real-life, living ranch and its rich history.

Time Magazine King Ranch Cover


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