|MARY ANN "MOLLY" DYER GOODNIGHT|
Molly Goodnight (1839-1926) was the epitome of a rancher's wife during the early settlement of Texas. She would become known as "Mother of the Panhandle" and "Darling of the Plains."
Mary Ann Dyer married Charles Goodnight in 1870 at the age of 31. (Charles Goodnight and Oliver Loving blazed the Goodnight-Loving trail to drive cattle north. The novel and series Lonesome Dove was based on Charles Goodnight and Oliver Loving.)
|PALO DURO CANYON|
Charles and Molly spent a seven-year stint ranching in Pueblo, Colorado, before a number of unfavorable conditions resulted in their relocation to the Palo Duro Canyon near present day Amarillo. Molly considered Texas to be much more civilized than Colorado. She had been particularly disturbed when two men were found hanged to death on a nearby telegraph pole.
|LOCATION OF THE JA (John Adair) RANCH IN|
|HOME ON JA RANCH IN LATER YEARS|
Charles found a financial backer in John George Adair, a wealthy Irish landowner, and the two men and their wives started the JA Ranch in the Palo Duro Canyon. The Goodnights convinced the Adairs to select this location because of the plentiful grass for grazing, a steady water supply, and protection for the cattle during the winter by the canyon walls.
|EARLY DUGOUT ON JA RANCH|
Over the years, Molly earned the respect and admiration of the cattlemen for the compassion she showed them and the natural remedies she developed for wounds and fevers.
|COWBOYS ON JA RANCH|
As the Panhandle became more populated, Molly donated her time to various philanthropic efforts. In 1898, she and Charles helped establish Goodnight College through the donation of 340 acres.
"Mary Ann Dyer Goodnight- One who spent her whole life in the service of others."
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