Taggers struck the old Goodnight barn just west of Pueblo some months ago. The graffiti on the historic building seems such an odd statement, though I suspect the artists know nothing of the structure’s history, nor do they care.
According to various historical sources, Charles Goodnight was the Texas cattleman whose life is said to have provided the loose framework for the book and movie “Lonesome Dove.” The former Texas Ranger drove thousands of longhorn-cross cattle from Texas north to New Mexico, Colorado and Wyoming. He’s also credited with inventing the chuck wagon.
In the 1870s Goodnight settled at Rock Canyon Ranch along the Arkansas River just west of Pueblo where the stone barn still stands in the middle of a now-abandoned gravel pit.
Goodnight later established another large ranch in the Texas Panhandle, and died in 1929 at the age of 93.
Eighty years later someone spray-painted who knows what on the front corner of his barn (click on the photo for a larger view), on property now managed by Colorado State Parks. If nothing else, perhaps the graffiti will draw attention to a truly historic structure that really needs some attention.