nav bar


Los Angeles Herald, 4 Jun 1905

FROM the wolf country the president will bring back many a pelt, but there will be none which he can more highly value than that which came to him by the ready lariat of Lucille Mulhall. She lives down in that land where the sky is set like a turquoise cup over the silver of the prairies, where the air is as clear as crystal and there is room for men to breathe. Her father is Col. "Zach" Mulhall, a cattle king, and she is a princess, for she has a ranch of her own, and 200 steers bear the brand "L. M." The capital with which she started her enterprise was a promise of the colonel that she might have all the stock which she was able to rope. She was then only 13 years old, but she mounted her pony and surprised the neighborhood by her unaided efforts. After that she took a $5000 prize away from scores of cowboy competitors at Fort Worth for capturing and typing steers at the rate of two a minute.

This kind of accomplishment could hardly be expected from a girl of 18 who quotes Ibsen and Browning, after the style of Owen Winter's heroine in "The Virginian." She is on her way to New York, and there will be few so astute as tp recpgmoze tje pretty, soft-voiced Miss Mulhall in her smart gowns as the "Queen of the Range," who lassoed the "gray brother" and tied him to a tree.

The Mulhalls live fifty miles from Oklahoma, in the territory of the same name, on their ranch by Beaver creek. The colonel is the general live stock agent for one of the great railway systems, and as such he is on friendly terms with hundreds of cowboys from whose ranks the president recruited his Rough Riders. It was while Mr. Roosevelt was visiting the Mulhalls, at Mulhall, Okla., that he mentioned the subject of the wolf. The president was talking of the wolves of the Oklahaoma country, the big fellows of the kind which friendly citizens of the territory recently arranged for him to shoot. He remarked that he would like to have a specimen for his curio room at Oyster House.

"We can get you one," said the "Queen of the Range."

"But I would only accept it," he answered laughingly, "on condition that you yourself rope him."

"You shall have him," was the girl's reply.

Now, it is no easy thing to lasso a wolf. He has no horne on which to drape a lariat. Besides that, he runs close to the ground, and compared to a hoofed creature, he is an inconsiderable mark.

The kind of animal that Miss Lucille Mulhall proposed to capture was a king of the pack, a "loafer," as the breed is called which lurks about the timber lands and follows unwary travelers. The cowboys kill that variety at 100 yards with a rifle. The idea of riding up to one and capturing him as thought he were so much beef on the hoof would not have occured to the hardiest plansman. I asked Miss Mulhall for the story the other day, and she told me how she filled the president's commission.

"I happened to remember that there was a den in the pastures at Mulhall. The pack had a way of going across the range early in the day and going back at night. So I went out every morning looking for them, and after ten days I saw them just over a divide. The "loafer" was leading the parade. There were fifteen in his pack at his heels. He looked to me as big as a yearling steer, but I was riding a good horse - and I said to myself, "Mr. Wolf, it is all day with you." The pack ran in all directions as I galloped up to it, and got away as fast as it could, expect the "loafer," who started straight for me.

"I got the lariat from the saddle bow and rode toward him until we were two hundred feet apart. Then Mr. Wolf changed his mind. He turned tail and ran away from me, after he got well straightened out, I ran up within ten feet when I dropped the rope over him. He was through the loop in a flash and heading for the canyon several hundred yards away. Now I knew if he wver got down among the rocks it was good-by. You see I could not bear the thought of losing him. I made a run to head him off from the canyon. I did it, and got him straightened out over the prairie. It was quick work, I tell you. The rope went through the air in record time, and I had him around the neck and one foot. Things swam about me after that. Away I went, without the slightest idea where I was going. The horse did not like the looks of the animal that was at the other end of that rope, for he was certainly scared, Mr. Bronco was. His head was tossing from side to side, and where he would have taken me I'm sure I don't know. He could not run too fast just then, though. All at once I felt the rope slacken. Mr. Wolf had gnawed the lariat, and the first thing I knew he was free. He was pretty well fatigued, so I only had to chase him another mile before I had the rope over him again. There was not much to do then; just a short run."

"How far?" I asked.

"Oh, not so very, very far," was the answer; "I guess about three miles. There was tall timber growing out in that direction, and the ranch foreman was in sight. The wolf was drawn up to a tree and killed with a knife. He certainly was a fine specimen. I sent his skin to a taxidermist in St. Louis, and after that he was shipped by expres to Oyster Bay. He is now in the president's curio room. I have a letter from Mrs. Roosevelt telling me about the arrival of Mr. Wolf. She said that it was amusing to see the way the dogs acted when they saw him come into the house.

One of the objects of Miss Mulhall's going to New York is to take part in the horse fair, which will be held in Madison Square garden. Her father, who is wealthy, has purchased an outfit especially for her, and she will give an exhibition of horsewomanship which will be a revelation to those who have been accustomed to rough riding of the convention kind. She wears a divided skirt and rides astride. A sombrero hat adorns her head and long, gauntleted gloves protect her hands. The spurred boots, the leather quirt and the ornaments which the cowboys love are hers when she is in riding costume.

When she talks of her visit to New York her eyes sparkle with enthusiasm.

All the daughters of Colonel Mulhall, who were present when the present dared Miss Lucille to lasso the king of the pack, will join in the exhibition of feminine rough riding.

Miss Agnes Mulhall, the eldest, who is affectionately known on all the western ranches as "Bossie" because she is the original of the girl in "The Texas Steer," is, as Miss Lucille expresses it, the "boss of the outfit." She has ridden the western prairie from one end to the other. Miss Lucille is the second daughter and Miss Georgia the third. The latter also is an expert rider.

Miss Mulhall has many friends in the east and she has been entertained at the White House.

nav bar

  Photos and Stories       Genealogy       Timeline  

  Index,     Butridge Genealogy,  

  Index,     Art Book,  

  Index,   Old Soldiers' Drums,   All Poetry,   Letters

  Index,     Art,     Writing,     High School,  

Home,   Family,   Favorite Pages,   Site Map

IME logo Copyright © 2014, Mary S. Van Deusen