After the United States government's successful experiment with camels in the west in 1857, entrepreneurs saw possibilities in the ungainly beasts for carrying supplies. In addition to the government's camels, which were sold off by 1864, two private shipments were brought in to Texas, and three into San Francisco, with over 200 eventually imported. Companies were formed to utilize camels from British Columbia to Mexico. In Nevada, civilian use of camels included transporting salt and lumber to the Comstock, and later running caravans through southern Nevada to Arizona. When business slowed, the camels were let loose in the desert where they flourished, until some local tribes and settlers discovered their meat was good to eat. Though still seen as late as the early twentieth century, camels eventually disappeared from the desert southwest, but their memory lived on in tales told around the campfire.