Most of this information comes from an interview that Colin Campbell gave to the Kansas City Journal in May 1905. It was reported in the Winslow Mail May 27, 1905.
Colin told the newspaper that he had been engaged in the sheep business in Arizona for over twenty years and he had taken his sheep multiple times east to Kansas City. During the interview, Campbell related this trip east with the six carloads of sheep, all wethers, that had been grass fed. It had taken three weeks to make the journey from Mayer to Kansas City. Mayer is considered to be the center of Arizona and has good grazing land. He told of being caught between two floods, unloading his sheep five times and then still had to hold his sheep on the cars for over 40 hours without furnishing them with food or water. More about the journey has not been recorded in newspapers in Kansas City or Winslow which was disappointing as many questions were left unanswered such as what condition the wethers were in when they arrived in Kansas City as he does not say in the quote below.
“The range men are bound to make some money this year,” said Mr. Campbell, “and they certainly deserve it, as they have been having hard luck in the southwest country for several years. This change is due to the fact that we have been having plenty of rain all over the country. In making this trip to Kansas City I noticed that in all the years that I have traveled over that long stretch of country I never saw it when it looked as green and beautiful as it does now. In Arizona the ground has been soaked a half dozen times since the first of the present year, as it never was before. This not only insures feed this year but prepares the ground for grass next year. The sheepmen of that country are making good money in two ways, one on wool and the other in the fat that the sheep will put on which make them sell at better prices. I sold all my wool clip this spring at 20 cents a pound ($6.73 in 2022 dollars), which is the highest price that I ever received for my wool. And the lamb crop was a good one, and we are going to bring to market the fattest sheep we ever marketed. This year the bulk of the mutton sheep of Arizona will come east, owing to the heavy rains that fell all over California this spring. These rains enabled them to fatten their own stock and so they will need fewer of our sheep.”
For reference, in 1897 Colin sold his wool clip for $.10 a pound ($3.57 today). And now just waiting to find more stories of the Campbell’s.