George Webb Slaughter, rancher, and Baptist preacher, the son of William and Nancy (Moore) Slaughter, was born in Lawrence County, Mississippi, on May 10, 1811. The family moved to Louisiana in 1825 and to Sabine County, Texas, in 1830. Slaughter served as a courier under Sam Houston and is credited with delivering a message to William B. Travis at the Alamo. On October 12, 1836, Slaughter married Sarah Jane Mason, and they became the parents of eleven children. Ordained a Baptist minister in 1844, he preached in Sabine and other East Texas counties until the death of his father in 1851, when he moved his cattle to Freestone County. In 1857 he set up a ranch five miles north of the site of present Palo Pinto, preaching and practicing medicine in addition to ranching. By 1860 his range extended into Young County. During the Civil War Slaughter furnished beef for the Tonkawa Indians under contract with the Confederate government. In 1867 Slaughter and his son, Christopher Columbus Slaughter, drove a herd of steers from Palo Pinto to Shreveport, Louisiana, under a contract with T. H. Johnson. In 1867 and 1868 some of the Slaughter cattle were sold to James C. Loving and Charles Rivers, but in 1870 the Slaughters drove 3,000 head to Kansas. They continued to make northern drives until 1875. Slaughter made his home in Emporia, Kansas, until 1876, when he dissolved his partnership with his son, Christopher C., and returned to Texas to ranch in partnership with another son, Peter Slaughter. The father sold his interests in 1884. He died at Palo Pinto on March 19, 1895.
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J. Marvin Hunter, Trail Drivers of Texas (2 vols., San Antonio: Jackson Printing, 1920, 1923; 4th ed., Austin: University of Texas Press, 1985). David J. Murrah, C. C. Slaughter: Rancher, Banker, Baptist (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1981). Clarence R. Wharton, ed., Texas under Many Flags (5 vols., Chicago: American Historical Society, 1930).
Ranching and Cowboys
Ranchers and Cattlemen
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.
“Slaughter, George Webb,”
Handbook of Texas Online,
accessed May 19, 2022,
Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Original Publication Date:
Most Recent Revision Date:
July 1, 1995