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Cattle Towns
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  4. The Cattle Towns. By Robert R. Dykstra. New York, Alfred A. Knopf, 1968. Pp. x + 386. $8.95

Criminals were given lenient sentences so the drovers would continue to come to the town.

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Some of the towns even had issues with law enforcement candidates who participated in illegal activities, but on the whole the towns dealt with criminals effectively. The idea of the lawless cattle town was more an image of Wild West legend than reality. A conflict eventually arose between the cattle town businessmen and outlying farmers because rural settlement was consistently put aside in favor of the cattle trade. Farmers were also charged exorbitant interest rates on bank loans and were even encouraged to raise livestock rather than grow crops.

The tension between farmers and the pro cattle trade eventually played out in the political arena in competition to win seats for county offices. The conflict between rural and urban citizens was one of the causes that led to factionalism. Other causes were old versus new citizens and establishment versus dissents.

Kansas Cattle Towns

Factional conflict kept any one political group from gaining too much power and allowed rural citizens to help in local decision-making. Cattle town citizens also argued over reform issues to curtail or remove liquor and other sinful businesses like prostitution from their towns.

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Some of these moral reforms were successful but only gained acceptance once the cattle trade moved on. Dykstra traces the history of the cattle towns effectively by telling the stories of the people who made the towns successful during the cattle trade years. It was an interesting read and offered a realistic view of the Kansas cattle towns without the sensational Wild West stories of cowboys and shootouts.


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  • Would you also like to submit a review for this item? You already recently rated this item. Your rating has been recorded. Write a review Rate this item: 1 2 3 4 5. Preview this item Preview this item. Subjects Cattle trade -- Kansas.

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    Cow Towns | nypedolo.tk

    Frontier and pioneer life -- Kansas. Kansas -- History. View all subjects More like this User lists Similar Items. With inns, saloons, and brothels that catered to the hard-working and free spirited cowboys, the cow towns were rough places. Many legendary lawmen, such as Wyatt Earp — and Wild Bill Hickock — 76 , earned their fame trying to maintain law and order in the cow towns. By the mids, changes on the frontier brought an end to the " Wild West.

    Railroads also reached into formerly remote locations thereby eliminating the need for cattle drives. The days of the long cattle drives were over.

    The Cattle Towns. By Robert R. Dykstra. New York, Alfred A. Knopf, 1968. Pp. x + 386. $8.95

    But cow towns continued to prosper as trading posts, serving the interests of farmers and ranchers alike. Many of today's thriving cities in the West grew out of the cow towns of yesterday — including Wichita, Kansas; Fort Worth , Texas; and Cheyenne, Wyoming. Cite this article Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography. Economic History. October 7, Retrieved October 07, from Encyclopedia. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

    Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia. A by-product of the dramatic growth of the cattle business in the latter part of the nineteenth century, cow towns flourished from until the s when railroads ended the necessity for long cattle drives.