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FALL 2020 SUMMER 2016
j. david nichols
I agreed prior to the Covid-19 pandemic
to deliver, in person, a presentation at the Cattle
U Seminar meeting in Garden City KS. Sev-
eral weeks later... I was notified that the meeting was going Virtual with ZOOM.
It is hard to teach an old dog new tricks and this old dog struggles to just master social distancing, and face masks with all the people who I “rub shoulders” with almost every day.
But I agreed to give it my best shot with a Power Point Presentation that was and is Nichols Farms road map for the future of the beef business and Nichols Farms role in it.
The presentations started with Mark Gardiner. He had a beautiful pre- sentation of the cattle and pastures of Gardiner Angus Ranch. And his words about his dad, Henry, and his family, were memorable and gave insight into his faith, family, and friends.
Iowa Cattlemens Foundation: 05/2017
The grass fires that have consumed thousands of square miles of Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas have shocked anyone who has stayed up half the night to watch one of their kids’ heifers calve.
Our hearts go out to those brave souls who fought the flames, lost cattle, feed, fences and especially those that mourn their families and friends who died trying to save their cattle.
— Continued on page two
Big Pete with Rey – Rey was the Champion Quarter Horse 1944, Southwestern Livestock Show, El Paso, Texas and maternal grandsire to AQHA Hall of Fame stud -Sugar Bars
Big Pete, Little Pete, and Jay Reynolds: An Historic Ranching Family
Jay Reynolds of Demopolis, Alabama is part of an historic ranching family that migrated east in the 1950s from Texas to escape a series of droughts. The family had an extensive ranching opera- tion headquartered in Marfa, Texas, which is near El Paso and the Mexican border.
In fact, his great-grandfather and grandfa- ther ranched on both sides of the border, driving a large number of stocker cattle into Mexico each year to graze. When the grazing season was over, the yearlings were then trailed back into the U.S. and loaded on railcars for shipment to the cen- tralized stockyards to market. They also ran cows in Texas and New Mexico.
It was while they were in Mexico that they became a foundation Quarter Horse herd when the breed was founded in 1941. The registry was formed by primarily Texas ranchers who wanted to preserve the unique and useful ranch horses that had developed over time. Because the Reynolds family was in Mexico, they missed the Quarter Horse formational meeting, but had their remuda inspected and registered while still in Mexico, becoming one of the breed’s Founda-
tion Herds. They are also one of only 14 Legacy Herds that has registered a horse every year the Association has been in existence.
country, but there is also a good bit
of crop ground in the region. It is there that the family has been in the commer- cial cow-calf business since migrating
to Alabama. Jay’s father, Pete, was also diversified with stockyards and a feedlot, but Jay has concentrated on strictly having a commercial herd.
Jay’s grandfather even diversified with a ranch in Montana. However, they were plagued by droughts, which forced them to largely de-stock during the worst ones. During one particularly bad drought in the 1950s, Jay’s grandfather visited his former foreman who had moved to Ala- bama. Once there, he was so impressed by all the green that he packed up and moved the operation to Alabama.
Jay reflected on the people who have influenced him, “I got the love and knowl- edge of horses from my grandfa- ther, but the cattle
They settled in the “black belt,” which was named because of the rich black soil that made it a major cotton growing region in the 1800s. It is excellent cow
met Dave and took a tour of his cattle and breeding operation he was in heaven.”
In terms of Jay’s operation, it is built
— Continued on page three
It was Pete who first met Dave Nichols when traveling in Iowa in the mid-1990s. Since then, Nichols not only has been supplying the Reynolds family with bulls, but Dave and Pete have also become good friends. This has involved trips by the Reynolds to Iowa to hunt pheasants and a trip by Dave to Alabama to deep sea fish in the Gulf. Although Pete is retired, he and Dave still keep in touch over the phone.
Dad. He lived and breathed breeding, feeding and mar- keting cattle for 50-plus years. When he
— Dave and Pete —
around the “Queens” of Southern cows—
side was all my

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