J. M. Miller Chaves County, New Mexico

From an early period in the history of the development of Chaves County the name of J. M. Miller has appeared frequently upon its records in connection with one of its most important industries, that of sheep raising. As early as 1878 he took up his abode within the borders of the Territory, at that time locating on a farm eleven miles southeast of Roswell, on what is now known as the Chisholm Hog ranch. In 1880 he embarked in the sheep business, being thus numbered among the pioneers in the industry, for at that time the only two men engaged in the business in what is now Eddy and Chaves counties were Judge Stone and Captain Lea. In those early days the sheep business was very badly conducted, scab being very prevalent, with no preventatives whatever, for the scab laws had not then been enforced. It was not until 1893 that the first scab law was enacted, but was not even then enforced to any great extent, until finally, in 1904, the government took hold of the matter and sent representatives to conduct the dipping, and the disease is now practically eliminated. Mr. Miller continued in the sheep business until 1897, when he sold twenty-one thousand head, and was practically retired from the industry for two years, when he again became interested financially, with his sons.

He now has property interests in the Pomona Farmers' Tract, consisting of fifteen blocks, from thirty to fifty acres each, making in all about five hundred and twenty-five acres, while in addition he is the owner of 1,920 acres along the Pecos River, eight miles southeast of Roswell, which is devoted to grazing and farming purposes.

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

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