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In 1885, the Farwell brothers from Chicago founded the XIT Ranch of Texas. The XIT’s ranchlands in Texas have an interesting origin story — the State of Texas was land rich but cash poor and was in dire need of a new Capitol Building after a terrible fire in 1881.

Texas traded the Farwell brothers 3 million acres in the panhandle in return for building the new Capitol Building in Austin. In its heyday, the XIT Ranch boasted 6,000 miles of fence and ran 150,000 head of cattle.