ELKO LAND & LIVESTOCK COMPANY
Elko Land & Livestock Company, (ELLCO) was formed in
1984 by parent company Newmont Mining Corporation, when they purchased the TS Ranch.
ELLCO owns and operates the T Lazy S Ranch and the Horseshoe Ranch. Both are
old, historic Nevada ranching operations, with the T Lazy S being the largest
and most well known of the two. The two operations have been blended together
to form one large 5,500 head cattle ranching operation. In the western
tradition of keeping things simple, these two combined operations are now
referred to as the TS Ranch.
The T Lazy S Ranch
The historic T Lazy S Ranch, located in Northern Nevada which lays between the towns of Elko and Battle Mountain, was originally settled by Irish immigrant William Dunphy. Arriving in California as a young man, Dunphy had the good
fortune to meet and eventually marry the beautiful and wealthy daughter of the
Spanish Land Grant family named Carmel.
In 1870, leaving his young family back in San Francisco,
William Dunphy formed a partnership with a man named Hildrith and began to look
for business opportunities in the
neighboring frontier of Nevada. They settled in Boulder Valley where they
turned their cattle herd loose on open range and began to develop and irrigate
wild meadow hay.
Throughout the 1870's, Dunphy and Hildrith continued to
expand their cattle and hay operations. Not above "bending" homesteading
regulations, Dunphy used his Irish emigrant friends back in California
to file homestead claims, which they sold to Dunphy after they received title.
(Most of these Irish emigrant "homesteaders" never stepped foot in Nevada!) By
putting together these acquisitions of homestead and railroad lands, Dunphy
and Hildrith were able to control vast acreages of open range to run their
cow herds on.
By 1875, Dunphy and Hildrith owned over 40,000 head of
cattle, which were run in two herds. One in Nevada on the Rock Creek and
Humboldt River drainages, and the other in Idaho on the Snake River drainage.
Both Dunphy and Hildrith maintained their main residence in California and left
the day to day management of their operations to a Superintendent. They spent a
great deal of time on their holdings, and occasionally brought their families
with them on inspection trips.
late 1870's, William Dunphy bought out Hildrith's interest in the Nevada ranch,
and continued to expand and improve the operation. Dunphy fenced over 20,000
acres, where he developed native meadows through irrigation, to produce grass
hay to feed thin and weak cattle during the winter; a practice unique to Nevada
at a time when most outfits relied upon open range.
Dunphy's herds prospered, until the hard winter of
1889-90, where despite Dunphy's hay reserves, over 10,000 head of TS cattle
perished. Dunphy immediately set about rebuilding his herd and
eventually changed from Shorthorn to Hereford cattle. His ranching operation
continued to prosper through his forward thinking and innovative management
practices. When he died in 1914, William Dunphy was running in excess of 20,000
head of cattle under 23 irons, the best known being the T Lazy S brand. He was
using his hay farming operation to grow feed for beef cattle designated for
late winter and spring markets. Dunphy ran a wholesale beef business in San
Francisco, where he supplied his California packing plant with his Nevada &
Idaho raised cattle.
Following his death, the Dunphy Estate was passed on to
Dunphy's wife and four children; the widow receiving a one-half interest and
the other one-half being equally divided among the four children. Gradually,
the once great spread dwindled in size as land was taken up by family heirs and
Since his death, the TS Ranch has changed hands several
times. It is now owned and operated by Newmont Mining Corporation, one of the
largest gold mining companies in the world. Managed through Newmont's
subsidiary Elko Land & Livestock Company, the T Lazy S Ranch remains one of
the largest and most progressive ranching operations in Nevada today.
It is thought that the T Lazy S brand, registered in 1873,
was acquired by William Dunphy in 1877 from Hobert & Simonds of Elko
County. What the T Lazy S brand actually stands for was lost in time and
remains a mystery.
Today, we just call it the TS Ranch, because "there is
nothing lazy about this outfit!"
The TS Ranch Today
The TS Ranch has long been known as a "straight-up
buckaroo outfit" with a reputation for tough horses, good cattle, and top hands.
And today, we continue to adhere to many of the old Spanish buckaroo
traditions, while following the forward thinking and innovative management style of
The ranch, operated as a profit center separate from
Newmont's mineral enterprises, is managed by Elko Land &
Livestock Company as a diversified commercial cow/calf and alfalfa hay
The cowherd, consisting of approximately
4,000 commercial cows, are run primarily on rangeland, in large pastures. A
5,000 head feedlot is operated as a weaning and "warm up" facility in the fall.
Some years, yearling cattle are run through the summer and shipped in the fall.
The ranch also pastures 2,000 to 3,000 sheep which are used for
weed control and to clean up alfalfa fields during the winter.
The Alfalfa Hay operation consists of approximately 5,500
acres under pivot irrigation. Some barley is raised
for feed grain in the feedlot. The alfalfa hay is primarily targeted to the
California dairy market, with lessor quality hay being fed to the TS cowherd or
sold to neighboring ranchers. As the interest in "bio-fuels"
increases, and in keeping with William Dunphy's tradition, we are now looking at
growing "energy" crops that can be used as alternatives to fossil fuels.
On the TS Ranch, wildlife and wildlife habitat are a major
focus in the overall management of the land and water resources of the ranch.
With Newmont Mining as a partner, thousands of acres of wildlife habitat have
been developed or enhanced, and numerous watering sources have been developed
for large and small mammals, birds, and fish.
We take a professional approach to the
profitable management of our cattle and hay operations, while protecting and
enhancing our wildlife and its' habitat. The ranch is managed and operated by
"real people" with family values and a sense of tradition and local customs.
Honesty and integrity are foremost in our dealings with our cattle and hay
William Dunphy came to this land now known as the TS Ranch
in 1870. With forward thinking and innovative management, he made it into one
of the great ranches of the West. We are committed to following in his
footsteps and through emulation of his
management practices, we work to ensure that the TS Ranch will remain an
agricultural leader through the year 2070.
The Horseshoe RanchThe Horseshoe Ranch, which
borders the southern boundary of the T Lazy S, is also rich in history and
Consisting of approximately 200,000 acres, the Horseshoe runs
around 1,500 commercial cows under the same type of range conditions as the TS
cowherd. And, the Horseshoe has a complete set of headquarter buildings, much
like the TS. In addition, the Horseshoe has a modern horse breeding and
training facility which was constructed in the 1970's. Managed by acclaimed
jumping horse trainer and coach Gene Lewis, the Horseshoe Ranch had a
reputation for breeding, raising and showing prize winning Jumping Horses.
Today this outstanding facility is used for the TS Ranch Quarter Horse Program.
Like the T
Lazy S, the Horseshoe Ranch today is managed using the same progressive
philosophy and values set by William Dunphy over 130 years ago. In fact, today, the two operations blend together so well, you can't tell them apart!
Other Elko Land & Livestock Company Ranches
addition to the TS and Horseshoe Ranches, Elko Land & Livestock, through
parent company Newmont Mining Corporation, has recently acquired two other ranch
The Big Springs Ranch, located east of Wells, Nevada was acquired by Newmont Mining Corp as part of their Frontier Gold Company acquisition. More information on the Big Springs Ranch will follow soon.
The sprawling IL Ranch, located north of Tuscarora, Nevada was acquired in June 2012. More information on the historic
IL Ranch will follow soon as well.
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