The Chimney Creek Ranch was purchased in 1920, consisting of only 3 pastures, by G. R. Davis, who operated the ranch as a sole proprietorship from 1920 to 1956.
Since that time:
The Waller family has operated the cattle operation since 1957 and cleared invasive plants on east side, now 22 pastures fully fenced. Rotational grazing systems have been identified and utilized in order to more efficiently graze cattle. Both the TPWD and NRCS have been vital to these improvements, especially making a difference in the past 5 – 10 years.
With the assistance of the NRCS and its EQIP programs, prickly pear and mesquite have been sprayed and removed as needed, allowing better forage. A riparian buffer along Chimney Creek has helped re-charge the underground water supply and helped the creek to stay flowing/wet much more often.
Constructed 2.25 miles of interior fencing and initiated rotational grazing on 1,720 acres through the GRIP in 2014.
Selective mesquite removal and reseeding of 225 acres in 2014 through GRIP.
Grazing deferral from 1,120 acres in 2015.
Selective mesquite removal and reseeding of 160 acres in 2015.
Selective mesquite removal and reseeding of 24 acres in 2017.
15 months of livestock deferral from 774 acres in 2016-2017.
1858 – 1861 – Butterfield Trail, Smith’s Station
1866 - 1867 - Goodnight Loving Trail.
1876 – Chimney Creek Ranch established.
1888 - Ranch purchased by Ella Matthews Conrad.
1900 – Bud Matthews Switch established.
1920 – Ella Matthews Conrad sells ranch to G. R. Davis, Robbie L Davis and T. Edgar Johnson married under the large pecan tree in the backyard.
1921 – Mary Frances Johnson Paup Driscoll is born.
1935 – Baker and Pardue discover oil.
1955 - G. R. Davis dies and leaves ranch to Robbie Davis Johnson.
1957 – Ranch is leased to Charlie B. Waller of Breckenridge.
1958 - 100th Anniversary of Smith's Station, DAR Marker
1973 – Robbie Davis Johnson dies. Charlie B. Waller dies, ranch is put into Trust at Midland National Bank for the benefit of Mary Frances Driscoll, Robert B. Waller takes grazing lease.
1981 – New ranchhouse is constructed.
1982 - Ranch is leased for hunting.
1982 - Smith Station Historical Marker Dedicated.
1988 – Trust is moved to Overton Bank & Trust of Fort Worth, annual inspections begin.
1991 – Awarded the Outstanding Conservation Ranch by the NRCS.
1993 - Bud Mathews Switch Historical Marker Dedicated.
2004 – Outstanding Conservation Ranch, Waller Cattle Company.
2005 – Outstanding Resident Conservation Rancher – Robert Waller.
2006 - New ranchhouse expanded to the east.
2007 – Mary Frances Driscoll dies, leaves ranch to Henry B. Paup and T. Edgar Paup, Chimney Creek Land Company, LLC established.
2008 - Chan’s Lake constructed.
2010 - Riparian buffer established.
2011 – Smith’s Station of the Butterfield Trail reconstructed.
2015 - Nancy and T. Edgar Paup establish the “Robert B. Waller Endowed Graduate Scholarship” at Tarleton State University.
2017 - Restoration of 1920’s and 1930’s cable tool era central power unit & cable tool drilling rig.
2017 - Texas State Historical Association, 2017 annual meeting, presentation on the Butterfield Trail.
2017 - Texas Historical Commission Marker- Frank E. Conrad, (owner of ranch, 1887-1892).
2018 - Texas Historical Commission Marker- Goodnight-Loving Trail (1865-1866).