J. B. Gilchrist Grant County, New Mexico

J. B. Gilchrist, secretary and treasurer of the G. O. S. Cattle Company, has been and is a valued factor in the development of the Territory through his active connection with railroad building and through the effective efforts he has put forth in securing the investment of capital in this portion of the country. He came to New Mexico in 1891 as chief engineer of the Silver City & Northern Railroad Company and superintended and engineered the building of the road from Whitewater to Hanover. T. G. Condon, of New York City, was vice-president of the company and the prime factor in interesting capital in the road, and to him is due much credit for the establishment of the line. The line was completed in September, 1891, the purpose of its construction being to take out the iron ore for the gold and silver smelters to be used as a flux. This ore was shipped to Socorro and El Paso and utilized for flux in the smelters there.

The railroad was operated for this purpose until 1896, when the track was washed out, and in 1898 the Santa Fe Company bought the road, repairing it to Santa Rita. When the Colorado Fuel & Iron Company began operations here they made arrangements with the Santa Fe Company to continue the road to Fierro, since which time the company has been mining for iron ore and converting the same into steel, making shipments over the railroad. Following the original completion of the road in 1891 Mr. Gilchrist had charge of the line and was also superintendent of the iron mines in this vicinity. He continued in that capacity until 1895 and in 1896 he was engaged in mining operations in old Mexico and in 1897 at Cripple Creek, Colorado.

In 1898 he returned to Grant County and in 1899 the firm of Gilchrist & Dawson was established. For a year previous Mr. Gilchrist had been engaged in leasing mining properties from the Santa Rita Copper & Iron Company at Santa Rita, and Mr. Gilchrist mined for copper on their properties. The firm of Gilchrist & Dawson being organized in April, 1899, they continued in the same line of work and in the same locality, opening up property which had been idle since 1884, but which has been in active operation since they assumed charge. The firm of Gilchrist & Dawson, however, discontinued mining at Santa Rita in 1899. The firm then began mining at Fierro, leasing from the Colorado Fuel & Iron Company, and so continued until August, 1902. A mercantile enterprise was conducted in conjunction with the other interests of this company, and at the present time Mr. Gilchrist is conducting a successful mercantile business at Fierro. He is the president of the firm of Gilchrist & Dawson, which firm owns the Copper Rose mine east of Santa Rita and now leases to other parties.

Mr. Gilchrist has also extended his efforts to other lines, being now secretary and treasurer of the G. O. S. Cattle Company, with headquarters on the Sapello. This company is incorporated with Victor Culberson as president and manager, J. B. Gilchrist, secretary and treasurer, and R. F. Herndon, of Colorado, as vice-president. This company bought out the Mountain Range Cattle Company, also the stock interests of Mrs. O. C. Carpenter and of the old G. O. S. Company and merged all these under the name of the G. O. S. Cattle Company.

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Source: History of New Mexico, Its Resources and People, Volume II, Pacific States Publishing Co., 1907.

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Created 1996 by Charles Barnum & 2016 by Judy White