Friday, September 4, 2015

Daring Women of the West Part 1

These gals are my heroines! I worked hard to find newspaper clippings about them. I think learning about them helped convince my mother to let me go along on the cattle drive (Heartbreak Trail). I can't wait to introduce you to a few of them. These are the gals most parents don't tell their daughter about, especially in 1883. I guess most girls are expected to grow up and help with Ladies' Aid missionary societies. These gals had other ideas.

Kitty Wilkins: She was born “Katherine” in 1857. Her father gave Kitty her first horse when she was a small girl (just like Father gave me Coco to ride when I was about three). Kitty's father bought a sweet filly for two $20 gold pieces. Her family moved all over the West and finally settled in Idaho.  When she grew up, folks called Kitty the “Horse Queen of Idaho.” She rode the range alongside her hired hands, and her Diamond brand became known all over the country. The U.S. cavalry bought her horses, as did Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. Kitty once took 3,000 horses to St. Louis and sold them herself. Then she changed clothes and entertained in an elegant fashion. Sadly, Kitty never married. She was engaged to her foreman, but he was killed going after an intruder on the ranch. (That is so sad!)
Lizzie Williams: Lizze was a well-educated young lady. Her father moved their family to Texas and established the Johnson Institute (of higher learning). Lizzie taught at the school (age 17), but after the Civil War, with all those loose cattle running free, she donned her sunbonnet, hired a few cowhands, and rounded up the strays to ship north. Lizzie became a wealthy young woman. In 1871 at the age of 28, she even registered her own brand! Later, she became the first cattle queen of Texas. When she married Hezekiah Williams, Lizzie was able to secure a contract that kept all of her own property (unusual for the times). Hezekiah and Lizzie drove their herds together along the Chisholm Trail. What a gal!

Stayed tuned for more "Daring Women of the West."


  1. Hmm, these are interesting! I've never heard of these women before! Looking forward to the next post! :D

  2. Wow, that's awesome! I really enjoyed this post, can't wait for part 2.

    ~Lydia~ <3

  3. This is cool! Excited for the next post! :D

  4. That's amazing! Can't wait for the next one!

  5. Cool! I love these posts!

  6. That is sad about Kitty's fiancée! Thanks for doing these, Mrs. M!!


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