Parker County Today December 2016 - Page 114

our opinions: CURMUDGEON MUSINGS The Last Word BY MARK BROWN Mysteries of the Universe Pondered DECEMBER 2016 PA R K E R C O U N T Y T O D AY I have a great experience to relate to you. First of all, this probably isn’t news to you longtime Parker County dwellers, but I want to share it with you anyway. We have spectacular western history here; so many fascinating events took place all around us in Parker County and especially in Weatherford. This was a hub of activity for Western icons like Charlie Goodnight and Oliver Loving and their cattle operations. These men and many others endured hardships beyond imagination in order to build their brands if you will, to stay, civilize and develop this area. There are so many great books that tell amazing stories about Texas in general and about Parker County in particular, and about the people that made their home here, both the settlers that put down roots here and the bands of Indians that lived here. I’ve mentioned this before. If you want a great experience, I’d say read one of these epic stories that includes a lot of Parker County history. Read about Charlie Goodnight in Charles Goodnight — Cowman and Plainsman, by J. Evetts Haley. There is not a better life story anywhere. It speaks to being a Texas Ranger, consummate cattleman, horseman, entrepreneur and so much more. Reading accounts like Goodnight’s makes one realize just how soft members of society have become. So that brings me to another recommendation. If you haven’t attended or you don’t know about the Red Steagall Cowboy Gathering & 112 Western Swing Festival, please make it your goal to find out about it and be there next year. Look at his website, get the info. This year, it began with a wagon train leaving Jacksboro on Oct. 23, and traveling through Perrin, Mineral Wells, Weatherford, Azle and arriving in the Fort Worth Stockyards on Thursday, Oct. 27. The 27th