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THE SHEEP COUNTRY So John Mackenzie had put his foot upon the road. This after he had reasoned it out as a mathematical problem, considering it as a matter of quantities alone. There was nothing in school-teaching at sixty dollars a month when men who had to carry a rubber stamp to sign their names to their checks were making fortunes all around him in sheep. That was the way it looked to John Mackenzie the morning he set out for Poison Creek... more...

CHAPTER I THE UNCONQUERED LAND Bones. Bones of dead buffalo, bones of dead horses, bones of dead men. The tribute exacted by the Kansas prairie: bones. A waste of bones, a sepulcher that did not hide its bones, but spread them, exulting in its treasures, to bleach and crumble under the stern sun upon its sterile wastes. Bones of deserted houses, skeletons of men's hopes sketched in the dimming furrows which the grasses were reclaiming for... more...

THE ALL-IN-ONE Down through the Bad Lands the Little Missouri comes in long windings, white, from a distance, as a frozen river between the ash-gray hills. At its margin there are willows; on the small forelands, which flood in June when the mountain waters are released, cottonwoods grow, leaning toward the southwest like captives straining in their bonds, yearning in their way for the sun and winds of kinder latitudes. Rain comes to that... more...

THE RIDER OF THE BLACK HORSE The trail from the Diamond K broke around the base of a low hill dotted thickly with scraggly oak and fir, then stretched away, straight and almost level (except for a deep cut where the railroad gang and a steam shovel were eating into a hundred-foot hill) to Manti. A month before, there had been no Manti, and six months before that there had been no railroad. The railroad and the town had followed in the wake of... more...