By: Eric C. Taylor
In the year 1860, Clay Newsome was an up and coming law student and rancher in the area of the small town of Fort Davis, Texas. His young wife, Julie, became pregnant. According to the family doctor, his wife was going to have a very difficult delivery which neither she nor the baby had much chance to survive. Clay did lose both his wife and his daughter as a result of the childbirth.
The Brown River flowed through the approximate middle of Clay’s ranch. This made the ranch desirable for a neighboring rancher of Clay’s, Willie McLawson. Willie had inherited a 20-section ranch in North Texas out in the middle of nowhere. The north boundary of that ranch was the Texas-Oklahoma state line. Clay felt he needed a new start so he traded his home ranch for Willie’s inherited land in North Texas.