Sheep numbers in 1924

Thude Sheep. Picture courtesy of Betty Thude

A look at the sheep industry at the close of 1924.

  • As of Dec. 28,1924, there were 588,443 sheep in the state.* This is significantly lower than in 1916 when the Arizona Republic reported nearly two million sheep in the state!
  • 40% of all sheep in the state were found in Coconino County. Sheep were listed as the second most valuable industry in the county after lumbering. There were 239,608 sheep in Coconino County with a value of $1.5 million.
  • The value per head of sheep was $6 in Coconino County, but only $5.50 per head in the rest of the state.
  • Yavapai and Apache counties saw a slight increase in sheep numbers whereas Maricopa and Cochise counties saw a big decrease.
  • The total value of the sheep in Arizona was placed at $3,402,022, significantly less than the ten million dollars in 1916, just 8 years previously.  The article stated that the sheep numbers have been decreasing every year since the highest numbers during WWI.  There was a 3% decrease in total numbers between 1923 to 1924.

The newspaper reported, “Prices for both wool and lambs have been sufficiently large to net producers a fair margin of profit. In fact, a big majority of the sheep men of the state have entirely recovered from the lean years immediately following the war and except for a decrease in the size of flocks, are in better condition now than for a period of many years.

CountyCommon SheepBucks
Santa Cruz00

*From the above numbers and verifying the newspaper’s comments, the total population of sheep would have been 599,027 (588,433+10,594).

2 My number was used as there is a discrepancy of 9 when adding the column of common sheep

3 While the article said there were 10,845 bucks the number does not agree when adding the column, a difference of 251.

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