Charles Goodnight, His Life and Legacy



Goodnight Barn


The Bent’s Fort Chapter of the Santa Fe Trail Association will feature a presentation on Charles Goodnight, his life and legacy, on Saturday, November 11. The meeting will be held at the J. W. Rawlings Heritage Center located at 560 Bent Avenue, Las Animas, CO. Prior to the presentation members will hold a general meeting at 11 AM followed by a catered lunch (cost $10).

The presentation will begin at 1 PM and will include a 40 minute talk and slide show on the history of Charles Goodnight’s life and his Rock Canyon Ranch in Pueblo, Colorado. The main focus is on Western Heritage in Colorado and preservation of the same for our future generations.

Linda Crawford, Co-Chair of the Goodnight Barn Preservation Committee, will use the first half of the presentation to speak to Goodnight’s early life, his arrival in Texas, his jobs as a youth and teen (including Indian Scout and Texas Ranger) that prepared him for his life-long work in the cattle trail and ranching business later in life. She will also speak to his early interest in Texas Longhorns, his partnership with Oliver Loving and the first cattle drives they did together.

Laurel Campbell, Co-Chair of the Goodnight Barn Preservation Committee, will give a bit more detail on the cattle drives, the Texas Longhorns, the historic areas that Goodnight and his drovers chose for swing stations and, of course, the settling of his Pueblo Rock Canyon Ranch in 1868. She will also talk about the Nolan Land Grant, the large range the Longhorns grazed, including the Babcock’s Hole Ranch in Wetmore, CO, the building of his magnificent stone barn in 1870 and his eventual move to the Palo Duro Canyon in the Panhandle of Texas in 1876.

Laurel’s and Linda’s presentation encourage community involvement and assistance for important historical sites. A wide variety of old and new slides will be used to illustrate the presentation.  Questions following the presentation are encouraged.

Come learn more about Charles Goodnight and his legacy. The presentation is free and open to the public at 1 PM.

Membership in the Bent’s Fort Chapter is $15 per year. To find out more about the meeting or the Chapter, please call Pat Palmer at 719-931-4323. The Bent’s Fort Chapter of the Santa Fe Trail Association is a 501c3 non-profit organization whose mission is to protect and preserve the Santa Fe Trail and to promote awareness of the historical legacy associated with it.

(Photo of the Goodnight Barn provided by Laurel Campbell)


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