About Skillet Maine Ranch
4H and FFA students and their families have for over 40 years relied on Skillet Maine Ranch as a source of highest quality show steer and heifer prospect calves in the East Texas region. We also have replacement yearling heifers and bred two year olds for sale by private treaty. We have been in business as independent operators since 1972 and have bred by artificial insemination almost exclusively since 1984. We tried several different breeds in the early years, including Simmental, Chianina, Angus and Charolais. All of these breeds produce some good cattle, but we realized that most of the show winners had at least a touch of Maine in their ancestry. The Maine breeding tends to produce the long, clean front end and the classy stature that are necessary to move them to the front in the show ring.
The Maine Anjou breed originated in France as a duel purpose meat and milk breed. Originally their hair color was red and white, but since they were introduced to the United States they have been crossed with Angus and selectively bred to make most of them black. In recent years the black Maines have often been crossed with Charolais to produce the “smokey” calves that have become much sought after.
The current owner of Skillet Maine Ranch, Wallace D. Gilchrist, is the third generation of Gilchrists raising cattle in East Texas. Wallace was born and raised on the ranch property and has been active in the cow business since childhood. His father, Wallace M. Gilchrist, was known to friends and family as “Skillet” (long story, better heard than read). The ranch name was chosen in honor of the original “Skillet” and the cattle breed that we specialize in today. Prior to the computer age, the ranch was known simply as “the Gilchrist Place”.