The following data is extracted from Arkansas Slave Narratives.
[HW: The Boyd Negroes]
Jack Boyd was born a slave. Miss Ester's mother was a Boyd and married a Donnahoo. Miss Ester Donnahoo married Jim Shed. The Boyd's lived in Richmond, Virginia. They sold Jack Boyd's grandmother, grandfather, mother, and father a number of times. One time they were down, in Georgia not far from Atalnta. They were being ill treated. The new master had promised to be good to them so he wasn't and the news had gotten back to Virginia as it had a time or two before so the Boyds sent to Georgia and brought them back and took them back home to Virginia. The Boyds always asked the new masters to be good to them but no one was never so good to them as the Boyds were, and they would buy them back again. When freedom was declared three of the Boyd brothers and Miss Ester's husband Jim Shed, was the last master of Charlie Boyd. Jack's father came to Waco, Texas. They may have been there before for they were "big ranchmen" but that is when Jack Boyds whole family came to Texas. There were thirty six in his family. The families then were large. When Jack grew up to be about ten years old there wasn't anything much at Waco except a butcher shop and a blacksmith shop. Jim Shed alone had 1800 acres of land his own. He used nine cowboys, some white and some black. The first of January every year the cattle was ready to be driven to Kansas City to market. They all rode broncos. It would rain, sometimes hail and sometimes they would get into thunder storms. The cattle would stampede, get lost and have to be found.
They slept in the open plains at night. They had good clothes. They would ride two or three weeks and couldn't get a switch. Finally in about June or July they would get into Kansas City. The white masters were there waiting and bought food and supplies to take back home. They would have started another troop of cowboys with cattle about June and meet them in Kansas City just before Christmas. Jack liked this life except it was a hard life in bad weather. They had a good living and the Masters made "big money." Jack said he always had his own money then. His people are scattered around Waco now, "the Boyd negroes." He hasn't been back since he came to Arkansas when he was about eighteen. He married here and had "raised" a big family. The plains were full of rattle snakes, rabbits, wild cats and lots of other wild animals. They never started out with less than 400 head of cattle. They picked cattle that would travel about together. It would all be grown or about the same age. The worst thing they had to contend with was a lack of water. They had to carry water along and catch rainwater and hunt places to water the cattle. His father's and grandfather's masters names were Gillis, Hawkins, and Sam Boyd. They were the three who came to Texas and located the ranch at Waco. Jack thinks they have been dead a long time but they have heirs around Waco now. Jack Boyd left Waco in 1881.
Source: Arkansas Slave Narratives