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56. HASTINGS, Frank S. A Ranchman’s Recollections an Autobiography in Which Unfamiliar Facts Bearing upon the Origin of the Cattle Industry in the Southwest and of the American Packing Business Are Stated, and Characteristic Incidents Recorded. Chicago: Breeder’s Gazette, 1921. xiii [1 blank], 235 [1 blank] pp., frontispiece plus 13 plates (mostly photographic). 8vo, original tan pictorial cloth, top edges tinted brown. A very fine, mostly unopened copy in original glassine d.j. (slightly chipped).

     First edition (first printed as a series of sketches in The Breeder’s Gazette of Chicago during the summer and fall of 1920). Adams, Herd 1009: “An excellent book, now becoming scarce, written by the manager of the SMS Ranch of Texas. Well-told stories of cowboy life.” Basic Texas Books 86: “One of the best books on the Texas cattle industry.... The volume contains a great deal on the SMS Ranches and their history, but also contains much on the packing industry, cattle breeding, famous cattlemen, and cattle drives. The stories told to Hastings by the cowboys themselves, however, are what make the book so valuable.” Campbell, p. 83. Campbell, My Favorite 101 Books about the Cattle Industry 45. CBC 1156 and 11 additional entries. Dobie, pp. 105, 134: “‘Old Gran’pa’ is the most pulling cowhorse story I know.” Dobie & Dykes, 44 & 44 #5. Dykes, Collecting Range Life Literature, pp. 5-6; Fifty Great Western Illustrators (Johnson), p. 177 (#90); Western High Spots, p. 102 (“The Texas Ranch Today”). Graff 1814.

     Greene, The Fifty Best Books on Texas, p. 20: “Hastings tells about the cattle industry, not ranching. The industry didn’t begin with the romantic longhorns, it began with the meat packers who created the real market for the ranchers’ cattle—which quickly became Herefords. Hastings was not a cowboy. University trained, he worked for Armour Packing, became internationally famous for his knowledge of bloodlines, and in 1902 was made manager of the SMS Ranches of Texas, where he helped change ranching from a gambler’s adventure to a business science. But his book is even more readable and exciting than run of the range memoirs because it is informed, and charming with accuracy.” Howes H287. Merrill, Aristocrats of the Cow Country, p. 19. Norris 1599. One Hundred Head Cut Out of the Jeff Dykes Herd 82. Rader 1819. Reese, Six Score 56. ($200-400) 

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