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Hi Cowboy Bob.

I would like to know if there was a tale about a young man who walked in to a poker game then won a 480,000 acre texas ranch... what were the cards he won with?

- R. G.


What you're referring to is the legend that Samuel Burk Burnett named his 480,000 acre 6666 ("Four Sixes") ranch in honor of a winning poker hand. It makes a good story, but the truth is actually a tribute to Burnett's hard work and careful management of his money.

After working for his father as trail boss on a drive to Kansas in 1867, 18-year-old Burnett began carefully saving his money until he was able to buy Frank Crowley's herd and brand in 1871. Crowley's herd bore the 6666 brand -- which then became the name of Burnett's ranch.

"Burk" Burnett slowly bought land to add to his ranch -- sometimes for as little as 25 cents per acre. He established his ranch headquarters near what later became Wichita Falls. In order to build his house, he hauled lumber from Fort Worth -- 125 miles to the south.

A good friend of Chief Quanah Parker, Burnett was even given a Comanche name: MAS-SA-SUTA, meaning "Big Boss."

The moral of the story: despite popular opinion, gambling is not the path to lasting riches; hard work and careful management will beat out the best poker hand every time!

I hope this helps.

Happy Horse Training!

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