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July 30, 2016
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June 03, 2009
Mickey Paulson Aranki added a new recipe: Rice wth Fried Noodles (Arabic)
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Announcements:Engagement of Aimee Leanne Roche to Fouad Alexander Aranki
Posted by: Mickey Paulson Aranki on Feb 4 2009 21:51
Aimee Leanne Roche, daughter of Patrick & Serena Roche will marry Fouad Alexander Aranki, son of Suhail & Suha Aranki on Saturday, 25th of April 2009 at The Church of The Holy Innocents in Highnam, Gloucestershire, U.K. at 1:00 pm. The reception will follow afterwards at The Queen's Hotel at The Promenade, Cheltenham
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Family stories:Memories of William Hansel Bass as told to Beatrice Bass Kilgore
Posted by: Mickey Paulson Aranki on Jan 24 2009 07:57
This was dictated by my father, W. B. Bass at age 71 in 1929. He was prompted to come to the defense of Lon Bass because of an article by Sanders Peterson that had appeared in "The Semi-Weekly Farm News". I took down by long hand this story of the second trip any cattle were ever driven up the Chisholm Trail, but failed to get it typed before I returned to school. Thus the defense of Lon Bass and the story of the trip was never published.

It was not until twenty or more years later when I came across my old handwritten copy that I had it typed for family members.
Beatrice B. Kilgore 1993

"I was born and reared in Mississippi, growing up in De Soto County, near Memphis, Tennessee. In the year 1878 slightly past my twentieth birthday, I set out to explore Texas and other points West.

First, I reached Fort Worth, where lived my uncle, Jim Reed. At that time Fort Worth was the terminus of the Texas and Pacific Railroad. In the summer of '79 this railroad was completed to Weatherford. At Uncle Jim Reed's I found my older brother, Dillard. We stayed in Fort Worth quite a while, having a gay, high-heeled time. I gave thirty dollars for a big black Spanish horse that could stand flat-footed and jump the moon.

After some time Dillard and I decided to go to South Texas, to San Patricio County, where we visited some distant cousins, Lon and Ed Bass. Right here I should like to correct an error in the article by Sanders Peterson. He said that Lon Bass was a cousin to the notorious Sam Bass. The history of Sam Bass says that he was born in Indiana. Ed and Lon Bass were born in the state of Mississippi, near Jackson, and were not any kin whatsoever to Sam Bass, the notorious train robber.

I was with Ed and Lon Bass the latter part of the winter of '78 and the early part of '79 fishing in Corpus Christi Bay, where it was quite common to catch red fish that weighed 150 pounds. I couldn't hold them by their gills and clear the ground of their tails, and I was a tall boy, five feet eleven to be exact.

There were six of us boys and three sets of brothers, Sam and Jeff Chisholm, Ed and Lon Bass, and Dillard and I. We hunted a great deal; the country abounded in large wild game. On one memorable occasion we penned nineteen head of wild horses at one time. Killing deer and wild cats was a common occurrence with us. As unreasonable as it may sound, we absolutely roped wild turkeys. We would find a bunch of turkeys in the high prairie grass and would stay far enough away from them that they wouldn't fly, but run. As the turkeys grew tired, they allowed us to get closer and closer to them. Then we would make a dash and rope them.

On March 22, 1879, I started up the Chisholm beef trail with 35 hundred head of four and five year old beef steers, belonging to Davies (Di-res) Rachelle. There were three of the Rachelle boys, Davies, Albert and Newt. Sam Chisholm was first boss of the herd that I was with, Jeff Chisholm, second boss; Jim Britton, George Craig, Doc Lyons, a Mr. Burnett, Dillard and I and several Mexicans were the rest of the crew. At the same time Albert and Newt Rachelle took a herd of the same number and grade as ours. Albert bossed his own herd and Lon Bass was second boss.

Right here I want to say for Lon Bass that I never met a braver man. He feared no man, and had a nature that gave everybody justice. I remember one particular instance that showed his liberality and justice. A seventeen year old boy came into our camp, trying to sell a horse for twenty dollars. Lon asked the boy why he was offering the horse for such a small sum of money when it was worth so much more. The boy said that his mother, a widow, lacked $35.00 paying her home out. Lon then gave him the $35.00 and told him to pay his mother's debt, repaying the loan when he could. The boy thanked Lon most gratefully and said that the horse was badly needed by them. The boy and his mother were complete strangers to Lon. That was only one of the many acts of kindness I saw performed by Lon Bass.

Now, let's get back to the trail driving. I don't remember any of the other members in Albert's bunch. The two herds traveled along together, camping together at noon, but spreading apart a mile or so at night. Everything moved fairly well until we reached Belton, Texas. The river, the swiftest I ever saw, was up. It would almost wash a horse from under a man. We crossed our herd without a very heavy loss and pitched camp a mile from the river. A freezing rain was falling. The night was black as pitch; and as luck would have it, we had a stampede on a grand scale, most of our herd running into Albert's herd. I was cut off from the rest, with about fifty head of cattle. Those steers ran fifteen miles before I could check them. Fresh from the Old States and never having worked cattle before, I was called Billy the Tenderfoot by the rest of the crew. On this stampede I proved my mettle by staying in front of the rampant cattle. As a result I was freed of the "Tenderfoot" part of my name and was called Billy from then on. I held those fifty steers until daylight. Then I could tell from the trail they had made how to work back to the main herd. After some seven or eight miles I met Sam Chisholm and Dillard looking for me. When we rode into the camp the cowboys gave me a rousing cheer for having stayed with my strayed fifty.

After combining the two herds we had 7,000 head of cattle. We strung them out up the trail in a line and cut the line half into as nearly as we could judge. Albert took charge of one half and Sam took the other. We drove the cattle to Fort Dodge, Kansas, and sold them to a man named Montgomery.

As we passed through the Indian Territory the friendly Indians would come to our camp and we would give them a beef, a gift that always pleased them very much.

In this region we came to a creek where there was no timber. The water was clear to a depth of six or eight inches. At the bottom was a solid sheet of green moss. Water Moccasin snakes were plentiful too. While we were watering cattle at this creek, my pony was drinking from a hole eight feet deep or more. Geroge Craig got off his horse and walked behind mine, giving him a shove that sent him in the hole where he sank out of sight. As it happened I got off just as George pushed him, and didn't fall in. When my horse came up he was covered with thick green slime and a water moccasin was riding in my place in the saddle.

Everything moved well with us until we got to the Cimmarron River; the water was alkali and the boys ahead of us lost five hundred head by letting them drink the water. The hardest task we had on the trip was to keep our herd from drinking that alkali water. From there on to Fort Dodge, however, we had a very nice drive, delivering our cattle to Mr. Montgomery. We stayed in camp there and rested several days.

Then Lon, Jim Britton, Jeff Chisholm, Dillard and I started back to Texas on our ponies. Three or four days out from Ft. Sill, Dillard and Lon decided to change their course and go into New Mexico. There they separated from us. That was the last time I saw Lon Bass.

The rest of us came on down to Fort Worth, where I stayed with Uncle Jim Reed. Uncle Jim wanted to go 65 miles west of Ft. Griffin, Texas, to a large horse and cow ranch he owned there. His wife wanted to go with him. Since there were no railroads we had to go in prairie schooners and hacks. We used a two mule wagon and a two mule hack. I remember distinctly that we reached Palo Pinto on a Sunday afternoon and that a great deal of excitement still prevailed there over the shooting of the seven or eight cow theives in jail. It seems that cowmen went there at night and shot them through the bars.

After a short visit to Uncle Jim's ranch, Aunt Georgie, her son Scott, a Mrs. Tucker, the Negro driver, and I came back to Fort Worth. When we got back to Fort Worth on the last day of August in 1879, I saddled my old black Spanish horse that I had ridden on all my trips and set out to ride to Olive Branch, Mississippi, eighteen miles south of Memphis. The city of Memphis was quarantined for Yellow Fever and I couldn't go on the train for that reason.

I arrived in Olive Branch September 22, 1879, having been on the road 23 days. This summer I made the trip from Corsicana to Memphis in a car in less than two days. Times do change!

I stayed im Mississippi a year or so farming, but I became heart sick for Texas, the greatest state in the Union. I came back in '84 and have lived here in the pride of the South, the Lone Star State ever since."

Note: This is copied with permission of Beatrice Bass Kilgore, who passed away last year. Her dearest wish was to find and unite all the Bass family. I have only changed one or two spelling errors, otherwise this is her manuscript.
Mickey Paulson Aranki

Sam Bass, the notorious train robber
Sam Bass, the notorious train robber

William Handsel Bass
William Handsel Bass

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