“[Boss] was a buffalo hunter, mustanger, trail hand, cattleman, farmer, grain dealer, owner of oil leases, and banker…He counted among his friends college presidents, authors, statesmen, as well as the humblest settlers, all of whom valued his salty wisdom and never-flagging love of life.”
Sebastian Neff was born in Ohio and became known as “Boss” after his parents shortened his first name. Fascinated by what he read of the ranch and cattle business in No Man’s Land, he left home at 17 and began his life as a trail hand on cattle drives and ranches across Kansas, Colorado, Texas, and Oklahoma. At 21, he had saved enough money to buy 100 head of cattle and purchased land in the Oklahoma panhandle. He moved his growing family to Hooker, Oklahoma, in 1909 and was active in the growth and activity of the town throughout his life. Neff was an organizer of the Old Timers Association and No Man’s Land Historical Society. In July of 1937 the City of Hooker established the Boss Neff Park on land deeded to it by Mr. Neff.
Boss Neff’s myriad of interests ranged from poetry and writing to playing the violin and reading. He subscribed to three daily papers, four weekly papers, four monthly magazines, and a historical quarterly.
Neff came to the Oklahoma Panhandle in 1883.