National Geographic : 1952 Apr
465 Drawn by William T. Peele and Irvin E. Alleman Hays Misses the Nation's Geographical Bull's-eye by Only 75 Miles Closest town to the country's center is Lebanon (lower map). Stage and express routes passed through Hays or close by. The first train arrived in 1867. English and German settlers built Victoria and Herzog (page 479). freighting company, Russell, Majors, and Waddell, of which he left this description: "Such acres of wagons! such pyramids of extra axletrees! such herds of oxen! such regi ments of drivers and other employees! No one who does not see can realize how vast a business this is, nor how immense are its out lays as well as its income. I presume this great firm has at this hour two millions of dollars invested in stock, mainly oxen, mules, and wagons. (They last year employed six thousand teamsters and worked 45,000 oxen.)" The heads of the firm opposed swearing, which was, of course, considered one of the manly arts. Oath-making and whip-throwing were the bullwhackers' pride. A story is told of a bullwhacker entering Alexander Majors's office to ask for a job. "Can you drive oxen?" asked Majors. "Yep," replied the fellow, "I can drive oxen to hell and back." "Well, well," replied the freighter, "I can't use you because our firm doesn't make that stop." With the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act, Kaw lands were opened to settlement. There was a rush from both slave and free States to stake claims. Emigrant aid societies helped settle the new Territory. Feeling ran high in both North and South.