01. Maverick, Brasada Spur (1959), Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
02. The Conjectural Maverick, Maverick Trails
Founder and owner of the Brasada Spur.
Stafford conceived of the Brasada Spur in 1867 to establish rail access between the southernmost public lands in Kansas near the Chisholm Trail to the new rail head in Junction City to cut 120 miles off the length of cattle drives coming up from Texas. With the help of investors in Kansas City, Stafford began construction of his railroad in Junction City in August of 1867. By the time the first train arrived at Stafford's southern Kansas site in February of 1868, New York millionaire Cyrus King Morgan had platted his layout for King City near the railhead.
Stafford's enterprise was promising, but his debts were high and he was facing heavy competition with Joseph G. McCoy's efforts further north in Abilene. At the same time, Morgan had partnered with Rufus Elgree and other New York railroad men, who were aggressively building their Great Western Line from Fort Scott, through King City, to Fort Dodge. The Great Western reached King City in December of 1870. With its New York and Boston backing, the Great Western was able to operate at a loss for its first two years, cutting deeply into Brasada Spur's profits and its stock became depressed.
In September of 1872, Bart Maverick was a guest of the Bella Union Hotel in King City and was tricked into winning 5,000 shares of Brasada Spur capital stock in a poker game. Bart went to meet Stafford to find out what the stock was worth and Stafford told him it carried several thousand dollars in liabilities, but may be worth something in fifteen or twenty years. Bart proposed a plan to use Brasada Spur assets to regain his lost money from the Great Western with Stafford's help. Events escalated into Elgree's attempt to destroy all the stations along the Brasada Spur's route, but Bart and Stafford managed to stop the destruction by raising a team of local farmers and ranchers loyal to Stafford's cause. The Great Western ultimately paid Stafford for all damages, pulling the Brasada Spur out of debt.
Stafford recovered financially for a short time, but the Panic of 1873 undermined the economy of King City and both railroads sold out to larger companies. Stafford was able to retain a substantial portion of his wealth and moved to Kansas City to begin anew.
See: Brasada Spur
Portrayed by Patrick McVey
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