The T&P concentrated its efforts on securing Ger- mans and Swedes, as they were considered splendid industrious farmers, inured to work and used to the plow. Since the T&P established and owned the town of Pecos, it must have been responsible for the French immigration to Texas reported in November, 1891. A party of forty-seven winemakers, direct from the wine- making district of Southern France arrived ... on No- vemher 1 and left for Pecos. This was the first colony of 500 who proposed to locate in West Texas for the pur- pose of cultivating grapes for winemaking. As a result these newcomers settled at Pecos, Barstow, Pyote and Grandfalls to put to use their expertise in irrigation and cultivation of crops of grapes, peaches, pears, cantal- oupes, cotton, alfalfa, some small grain, and other feed crops. In its zealous selling job, the T&P also operated its "Emigrant Sleeping Car" and built a big hotel-like "Im- migrant's Home" at Baird, where newcomers might stay until locating sites. Settlers were carried for half price (2 1/2c per mile) and allowed 200 pounds of bag- gage for each person. Children between 5 and 12 were carried at half the adult fee. The "Emigrant Sleeping Car" would stay for three days at each point on the T&P, giving newcomers ample time to study the area. These emigrant groups were called "Zulus" and five different racial colonies were brought in by the T&P in response to the T&P advertising. In an interview with Waters Farnum, he says: Our family came in 1908 from Clemon, Texas. I was one year old. My father worked for Dr. Melton on his alfalfa farm. Father came out in an Emigrant Car. You leased the car, put household goods and farming equipment in one end and livestock in the other end. You were allowed one attendant with- out charge. A clear description of these Emigrant's Cars was given in the Marshall, Texas, News-Messenger, May 31, 1956: An old car built by the Litchfield Car Company in 1883 is being restored and overhauled at the T&P shops to be sent to the Centennial at Dallas. It was one of the 12 cars used by the Texas and Pa- cific Railway in hauling many of the early day im- migrants from the old Eastern states into Texas and were known as Emigrant sleeping cars in their days. These cars had four windows on the side and were equipped as sleeping cars on the interior with slat seats that could be pulled together to be used as beds. They had no upholstery or drapery but were of plain wood finish. Another old car is being converted in a combination coach and baggage car. This car was brought from the Pullman Palace Car in 1876 and was given No.50 when it was placed in service. One of the latest of all steel bag- gage cars is being converted into a "bath house," to be placed in Pullman City during the Centennial at Dallas. The car has 14 shower bath rooms, with hot and cold seats, mirrors and all conveniences of a bath house. Another description of the Emigrant Car is given us by Walter Burkholder of Barstow: On the 15th of December, 1912, my dad loaded an Emigrant Car, which had a cheap rate, with fur- niture and the panel job, one pony and a bicycle among other things. He and my older brother shipped through to Pecos. My dad sneaked in and rode as a stowaway. You were allowed to bring livestock in this car if you wanted to and were al- lowed one attendant. They had a shetland pony that the kids had ridden and that their grandfather had given them. They brought him to Texas with them. They brought a crate of Indian runner ducks and they didn't have their mouths shut from the day they left up there (Iowa) until they got down here. He never hated ducks so bad in his life. They had their furniture packed in one corner of the car and a bicycle about halfway up. He could go right through the frame of the bicycle where he had a bed back there 'cause he stowed away. They did all right until they come out of some little town in Texas. They came around the curves and they were both standing in the car door. The brakeman in the caboose saw that there were two people in that car and the next time the freight stopped, here he came. He said, "Where is that other fellow?" My brother said, "Well, there's nobody else." "We saw. We know there's somebody else in there." "OK. Come up and search." They crawled up in that car and they searched through that panel job wagon and all through the horses and the bales of hay, but they never did see the hole where the bi- cycle was. So they didn't find him. Mr. Burkholder also gives a picture of the kind of freight that was shipped on the T&P from this country: One year we shipped from 4000 to 5000 cars of hay, alfalfa hay down into Louisiana. They had in those days what they called "Common Freight" rate and it was five dollars a ton to ship hay from Barstow to Louisiana. They put it on a mileage ba- sis and the farmers in Oklahoma could ship it in much cheaper than they could. They lost their market and had to quit raising hay. Also in those days they had a big deal in the summertime with the hauling of hay from all those farms. All that hay had to be baled and had to be hauled from 34 mile to 5-6 miles out of town into Barstow to the railroad and loaded into those cars and shipped out. Mr. T.F. Moore is the man who handled most of the hay and was the commission man who had his own office. In 1914 when I was about 16, one Sunday they came after me to sew sacks at the thrashing machine where they were hauling the al- falfa seed. I stayed on there the rest of the year, and I never missed a year running the thrashing machine until I went into the army in 1918. One of El Paso's most widely known pioneers, W.W. Bridgers, was also one of the ablest historians as well as a member of Texas House of Representatives. He remembers when, at the age of twelve, he was a water boy for the J.H. Comstock Construction Company, one of the contracting outfits hired by Jay Gould to put through the Texas and Pacific. He and the other mem- bers of the crew were camped near the Pecos River when the famous furious race between the Texas and Pacific ended in 1881 with an agreement near Sierra Blanco which terminated all contracts and made neces- sary no further roadbuilding. Representative Bridgers, in a reminiscing mood, believed the rumor ran rife that Huntington of the Southern Pacific cornered the rail market in the U.S. At the time he heard that the South- ern Pacific had taken an option on all steel rails produced in the United States and he further believed that the Southern Pacific shipped those rails over the two other transcontinental railways, Union Pacific and Central Pacific, which had been in operation since 1879, while Gould, under a disadvantage, had to have his rails shipped from England by boat. Further remi- niscences revealed that Bridgers as a water boy had to haul water seven miles to the dump for the workers and that on the long trip back to El Paso, after the crew had been dismissed, he and his party averaged twelve miles per day. Another thrilling story told by one of the early day workers was found in the Railroad Man's Scrapbook. The following dispatch, filed at Stockton, Texas, in 1880, affords a glimpse of the courage and drama that rode with the men who surveyed and built the rail- roads in this section of the country: Major R.J. Lawrence and corps of the Texas and Pacific Railroad surveyors, after a number of days of extreme suffering from thirst in the White Sand Hills, miraculously arrived at the Pecos River with- out the loss of any men, but with the loss of some stock. Wagons were abandoned at different inter- vals of 40 miles along the trail. Great suffering was experienced by both men and stock, men strag- gling along the trail arriving at the river. From the morning of the 28th until next morning, with the assistance of those first arriving at the river the last of the stragglers were brought in with much diffi- culty, as numbers of them were crazed from thirst and had entirely stripped themselves of all wearing apparel. Three of them were found within 100 yards of the Pecos River where they were drinking the blood of an animal they had killed. Some of the men were totally blind and on arriving at the river plunged in head foremost. The party congratulated themselves on a narrow escape from perishing an the plains. Had it not been for several of the expe- rienced and their bravery, the greater number would have died in the sand. The survey was abandoned in the Sand Hills, but will be resumed as soon as the men and animals recuperate. When the sun and wind parched the prairies in the early 188Os, many a frontier farmer and rancher kept his family from going hungry by gathering buffalo bones and selling them. Large sections of the grasslands were strewn with the whitening bones of several mil- lion buffaloes killed by the hide hunters in 1874-79. Prairie fires had destroyed some of the bones, but enough were left to provide a boon for those who hauled them to the towns, and even an appreciable business for the railroads. Some of the early Texas hauling was from the Pan- handle to Dodge City, Kansas. The roundtrip took a month to six weeks, the time depending on the weather. Other bones were shipped by coastal steamer from Galveston or by rail from San Antonio. New mar- kets were provided as the Texas and Pacific built west from Fort Worth. A trainload of bones shipped from this area to New Orleans brought such good prices that thousands of bone gatherers flocked to the ranges. The bones were shipped to carbon works in St. Louis and eastern cities. The old, weatherbeaten ones were ground into meal for use as fertilizer. A few choice ones went into bone china. But most of them were pre- pared for use in refining sugar. Horns were used in making buttons, combs and knife handles. All the up and coming towns along the T&P became important shipping points for bones. Tom Low and others made good money hauling them to Sweetwater before the railroad reached our area. Prices varied con- siderably but averaged about $8 a ton. Some of the haulers watered their bones to make them heavier. One who hauled them from Kent County to Colorado City always spent the night at Lone Wolf Creek where he allowed the bones to soak while he slept. This increased the weight about one-fourth. In the Texas towns the wagons stood in the streets while the buyers went from one another and offered bids. Af- ter making a sale, the driver moved on to the railroad and added his load to one of the piles along a siding. The matter of obtaining water has always been a large problem for the railroad. In a letter dated Febru- ary 14, 1968, to Mrs. Belle S. Toole, Mr. Malone dis- cusses water trains that were used at one time: There are no official records of those old water trains. The forerunners to the short-lived water trains were, of course, the water tank cars or in most instances box cars carrying barrels of water which were so much a part of the work trains that followed right on the heels of the construction forces laying the track. Water was not only a requi- site for the construction workers but also for the railroad's considerable herd of beef cattle and horses in the construction period in West Texas. While I cannot substantiate this as factual, it is my opinion that the water trains lasted only a very few years at most. To provide the tremendous quantities of water necessary to operate the steam engines, the railroad, shortly after construction, went about setting water tanks all up and down the line. These first water tanks-and there were two of them at Monahans-were wooden. But also, the records are lacking as to when they were first installed. SECTIONS, SECTION HOUSES AND TRACKS The railroad under the guidance and strict orders of General Dodge continued to be built across the western plains at the rate of one mile and a half a day. The sec- tion houses were built from ten to twelve miles apart. Ward County has been associated with several num- bers, but according to the Texas and Pacific records in Dallas, the number assigned to the first section house in Ward County was 603.37 which meant that this section house was 603.37 miles from Texarkana. These structures served for depots, equipment stor- age and housing for labor crews until eventually in- creased usage required larger, more modern facilities. When the Texas and Pacific started to operate, it used boxcars for passenger and freight stations, but by 1887 that era had almost passed. Spick and span station houses stood along the right-of-way at regular inter- vals. In addition to the stations, about every ten miles there was a residence for the section foreman. These "section houses" were identical wooden structures neatly stripped from ground to roof. In design they were rectangular prisms twice as long as wide, gabled at the ends. Across one of the long sides of each was a sturdy spacious porch. On the opposite side was a shed room, used for storage. Up the outside wall of one of the gabled ends, a ladder-like stairway slanted to a door on the second floor, the only entrance to or exit from the upstairs quarters, reserved for the telegraph operators at some sites. The ground floor was for the use of the section foreman and his family if he hap- pened to have one. These sites were seats of official- dom ... The section foremen and their crews who lived in long, low buildings near the section houses were not able to maintain the tracks without the aid of "extra foremen" who were sent where special work was needed. Those extra foremen and their crews lived in special boxcars on the tracks until their assignment was finished. Sometimes a regular section foreman was made an extra foreman and vice-versa. The records of the T&P Railway gives a picture of what was in Ward County as clearly as any other state- ment that we have been able to find. We have included Metz which was in Ector County in order to show the relationship of all the other section houses and build- ings and because many of those who worked in Mona- hans had at sometime or another lived at the section house at Metz. The following is a statement of the buildings, water stations, coal chutes, turntables, stock- pens, etc. in Ward County (and Metz in Ector County) on January 1, 1910. Distance from Stations Texarkana 593.05.... METZ Section house 167-168, 16x32, I story frame L. 16x24, 1-story, 4 rooms Front gallery, 7x28 Back gallery, 7x22 Mexican house, 12x72, 1-story frame, 6 rooms Tool house, 12x12 Water house, 5x16 2 privies, 4x6 each Stock pens- I pen, 27x39 1 pen, 54x118 I pen, 65x118 I pen, 55x155 I pen, 36x91 1 pen, 18x23 I chute I alley, lOxIB 1 chute platforms, 8x24 Wing fence, 180 ft. long 603.37....SANDHILLS Section House 169-170, 16x32, 1-story frame L, 16x24, 1-story, 4 rooms Description and Dimensions Front gallery, 7x28 Back gallery, 7x22 Mexican house, 12x24, 1-story, 2 rooms Mexican house, 16x20, 1-story, I room Tool house, 12x12 Water house, 5x16 2 Privies, 4x6 eac604.37 .... SAND PIT No Company Buildings 608.58....MONAHANS Comb. Depot, 24x27, 1-story, frame Office, 10x24 2 waiting rooms, lixiS Freight room, 22x24 Freight platform, 1,000 sq. ft. Double closet, 6x10 Agent's dwelling, 14x24, 1-story frame L, 12x24, 1-story, 4 rooms Gallery, 6x16 Side gallery 6x30 Shed room, 4 ft. 6 in, x 11 ft. Privy, 4x6 Pumper's dwelling, 14x24, 1-story frame L, 12x24, 1-story, 3 rooms Gallery, 6x16 Privy, 4x6 Shed Addition, 10x16 Old Pump house, 12x12 Stock pens- 1 pen, 55x118 1 pen, 50x56 1 pen, 47x50 I pen, 32x64 I pen, 18x64 1 pen, 32x43 1 pen, 21x32 1 alley, 10x160 1 alley, 10x43 Wing fence, 94 ft. I Chute 1 Chute platform, 8x24 Water troughs Cotton platform, 30x36 Crane house, 20x28, 24-ft huge frame Coal bin, 26x240 Coal chutes, 7 pockets Incline and level track, 492 ft. long Pile and frame, 5 pile bents; B.D. 29 frame bents on B.D. pile foundations Level track 16 ft. high Coal heaver's house, 14x32, 1-story, 2 rooms Junk house, 12x14, used to be dry sand house Water tank, 16x24, cypress on wood foundations Water tank, 11x27, Calv. steel on stone foundation Pump house, 18x18 Water from 3 dug wells Coal house, 10x2613.90.... AROYA Section house 171-172, 16x32, 1-story frame L, 16x24, 1-story, 4 rooms Front gallery, 7x28 Back gallery, 7x22 Mexican house, 18-6x73, 1-story, 5 rooms Tool house, 12x12 Water house, 6x16 2 Privies, 4x6 619.38 Water tank, 16x24, cypress on stone foundation Pump house, 12x14 Coal bin, 10x20 Pumper's dwelling, 14x16, 1-story frame L, 12x14, 1-story frame, 2 rooms Gallery, 6x12 Water from dug well 623.44...,PYOTE Comb. depot, 24x32, 1-story frame Office, 8x14 Waiting room, 14x15 Freight room, 17x23 Double closet, 6x10 Section house, 173-174, 16x32, 1-story frame L, 12x20, 1-story, 4 rooms Front gallery, 6x28 1 Mexican house, 12x18 I Mexican house, 12x14 1 Mexican house, 18-6x73, 5 rooms, 1-story frame I tool house, 12x12 Privy, 4x6 Cotton Platform, 16x32 Stock pens- I pen, 20x42 1 pen, 32x58 I pen, 48x58 1 alley, 10x20 I chute I chute platform, 8x24 830.69.... QUITO WATER STATION Water tank, 7x26, Galv. steel on wood foundation Pump and boiler house, 10x36, 1-story frame Coal bin, 8-28 Well derrick, 32 feet high Water from 2 drilled wells 632.37.... QUITO WATER STATION Water tank, 7x26, Galv. steel, stone foundation Pump house, 12x12 Coal bin, 8x28 Water from pond 632.69.... QUITO Section house, 175-176, 14-26, 1-story frame L, 12~4, 1-story, 3 rooms Gallery, 5x22 Outhouse, 13x15 Back room addition, 13x15 Mexican house, 16x86, 1-story, 6 rooms Privy, 4x6 Stock chute, 24 ft. long Platform, 8x24 634.42.... QUITO QUARRY No Company buildings 639.12.... BARSTOW Comb. depot, 20x51, 1-story frame Office, 11x20 Waiting rooms, 15x20 Freight platform, 1,560 sq. ft. Water house, 5x8 Douhie closet, 6x10 Cotton platform, 16x96 Stock pens- I pen, 28x38 1 alley, 10x48 1 alley, 11x28 Wing fence, 40 ft. 1 chute I chute platform, 8x24 Sand bin, 8x34 Even though the terrain through the county was rather desert-like and uneven as far as sandhills were involved, there were little bodies of water that required span bridges for the railroad. The T&P listed four such bridges in the area of Quito and the Pecos River. Water played an important part in the development of the railroad as it passed through this area. Monahans had three wells with capacity of 200,000 gallons daily; Pyote had a well with "Limited" daily capacity; Quito had two wells with "Limited" daily capacity also. Since Ward County was being developed as a cattle raising area, the T&P provided for cattle crossings and other traffic crossings along the line. It is interesting to hear those who have lived in this area at one time or another relate their experiences as they and their families tried to cope with the raw unde- veloped country. Laverne Gay Holloway of Whitney, Texas, and her brother, Raymond Gay, visited Mona- hans Sandhills State Park in 1977 and related the fol- lowing to Edith Grissom of the museum: My father, W. Sim Gay, was foreman at the T&P section camp near the present park entrance in 1908. I was five and Raymond was nine months old. We were the second family to live in the fore- man's cottage which is now the Concessions build- ing in the Sandhills State Park. Our family was in- vited to dinner with the ranchers and they were all impressed as they had new potatoes with flour sprinkled over them and cooked in milk. They were just the most delicious potatoes we had ever eaten. We had never seen a black person, so our aunt dressed up as one and we were really scared. One day a hobo stopped at our house and was showing off for some cowboys and he picked up a rattlesnake, holding the head with one hand and the tail with the other. The snake outwitted him and bit him on the hand. He was so very sick all day on the front porch with his hand soaking in a bucket of coal oil (kerosene) and when it turned green, we would get a fresh bucket. When a freight train came by, he was taken to a hospital. He lived. In an interview with Mrs. W.T. "Willie" Chandler of Midland by Mrs. Rita Feaster on May 14, 1979, Mrs. Chandler tells what it was like to live in the housing provided by the developing railroad: Before we lived in Monahans, we lived at Metz in a box car that they fixed up for us to live in while they were building us a section house at Monahans. We were at Metz 14 months. That was 51 years ago (1928) because I remember my last baby was born when we were in the box car. I came to Midland for the delivery. They built the section house in Monahans for us and we stayed there until February of 193a. The house was a three room house-a well built house-painted that old yellow and bordered in black, the railroad colors. They had a fence around the front of our house and at the back were the Mexican houses-five of them. There was a signal maintainer who worked with his motor car. He took care of the signals on the blocks and he lived up town somewhere. If I'm not mistaken, he was a single man. The workmen had two room houses and they were as well built as ours. There was no indoor plumbing. We had an outdoor toilet and I don't remember how we got our water. There was a ranch house up kinda north of us. I don't know whether it was Jim Tubb's house or not. It was kinda out in the pas ture like. For water we had a company well west of the depot, and I guess it was piped down there as best as I can remember. That was the best water I think I have ever tasted. I sure do miss hearing the trains running, 'cause you know we lived right on the tracks. People used to wonder how I ever stood the noise of the trains passing through. Lots of times I didn't even know they were going by. You know you just kinda get used to them. The early passenger trains would run early in the morning before time for us to get up and we wouldn't know whether the train had run or not. My husband would go down to the depot to get a schedule to see if the train had run or not. Of course, he'd go out on his motor car with his men and he'd want to know if the train had run. They'd laugh at us - living right on the track and wouldn't know whether the train had come or not.
Courtesy: Ward County 1887-1977 Historical Archives.