James M. Kerr is listed in the 1865 state census on line 29 as a contractor living in Leavenworth. He and his partner, Hayden McKeeken, controlled the contracts for traffic between Ft. Leavenworth and Ft. Union for some time.

As can be seen below, The Leavenworth Times reported in May, 1865 that he had been the lowest bidder for a contract to deliver the cattle to Fort Union. He received the contract and during the months of June and July was advertising in the paper to collect the necessary animals to reach the initial goal of 1,000 head. The figure of $11.36 per 100 pounds was presumably what Kerr was paid for the job, but there are no records for what the trail crew got paid..