Take a step back in time as you visit the historic John Slaughter Ranch near Douglas, Arizona. Texas John Slaughter was one of the Southwest’s most beloved characters and most feared lawmen. And here, at his ranch, originally known as San Bernardino Ranch you can enjoy the scenery, wildlife, and atmosphere that has been left largely untouched since Texas John Slaughter’s time.
Although John Horton Slaughter was born October 2, 1841 in Louisiana, his family moved to Texas when he was a baby. The family was known there for their huge cattle ranches and the nickname “Texas John” stuck. Slaughter became acquainted with the ways of the Indian growing up and became an excellent tracker and marksman, which helped him during his service in the Civil War with the Confederate States Army. In 1874, John became a cattle driver with his brother near San Antonio where they started their own cattle-transport company. Later that decade, John decided to start a ranch in the Arizona Territory which led him to acquire the San Bernadino Ranch.
After living in Arizona for a few years he was elected sheriff of the Cochise County where he served two terms. During his service, he helped track Geronimo, the famous Apache chief and arrested many outlaws like Jack Taylor and other notorious gangs of the day.
While John was a hard-working lawman he also had an interesting personal life. In his free time, Slaughter played quite a bit of poker which he was very proficient at. Like the law, John Slaughter also took poker very seriously. After being cheated out of his winnings by Bryan Gallagher, Slaughter went all the way to New Mexico to John Chisum’s ranch to find Gallagher and get his money back. Take a look at our John Slaughter page to learn more about this interesting historical figure.