The Springer Ranch was the first ranch in the Panhandle, but because of its brief, checkered life, as opposed to the still-extant JA Ranch, the latter also claims that honor. After the Red River War, in the spring of 1875 A. G. (Jim) Springer appropriated a spot of land in present Hemphill County on Boggy Creek just north of its junction with the Canadian River. Here he constructed a multiroom dugout to serve as a general store, hotel, and saloon, as well as living quarters. In addition, he dug a tunnel from the all-purpose roadhouse to a nearby corral and stable that he built out of pickets. Since Springer's hostelry was on the military route from Fort Supply to Fort Elliott, it quickly became a supply depot and gathering place for transient buffalo hunters, soldiers, and cowboys. Black troops stationed at Fort Elliott, in particular, found it the only place in the Panhandle where they were welcome to play cards and enjoy good whiskey and tobacco. "Old Springer" soon won considerable notoriety as a shrewd poker player. His roadhouse later became a regular stagecoach stop, and in October 1878 a post office was established there under the name of Boggy Station. However, it was closed after only two months' operation, and mail was routed to Fort Supply.
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