Texans used a system called cattle driving to move their cattle from one place to another to sell. They would gather cattle from multiple farmers and lead them on a trail, such as the Chisholm trail, to their desired location for selling.
What the heck, cows are better!
In the mid-1800s, scientists developed kerosene, which was a new fuel that could be made from coal or petroleum. Kerosene was also much safer and cheaper than other solutions at the time. The development of kerosene cause the demand for oil to rise greatly.
3 Cents per Barrel!!
Railroads were a cheap and reliable method of shipping cotton and other crops to the national market. Railroads also opened up new areas to commercial farming with spur lines that extended off to fertile areas.
West Texas Innovations
In the late 1800s, windmills, sheep ranching, and other innovations contributed to the disappearance of the open range. Some ranchers who lived on rugged land, for example, decided to switch to farming sheep.
After the Spindletop boom, oil production rose to an all-time high, so much so that oil production was outpacing national demand. Thus, oil prices lowered to a whopping three cents per barrel.
Only three cents... well, there goes any chance of getting rich!
Much of the soil in west Texas was rich, but hard on the surface. John Deere invented a plow that could cut through this stiff surface, which was commonly used by 1845. Other inventions included horse-drawn plows that could plow several rows at once and threshers.