Mystery solved. I figured out the missing word in this sign: ‘Wool’.
My guess was based on the amount of room available for the missing word, which otherwise might have enough space for ‘tree’ or ‘wood’, and the animal mascot depicted in the center. Thought that might be cow, but a quick search for California Wool Growers Assn. returned a match, and an image search found another one of these signs, with more legible text.
Sheep, like people, are ungovernable when hungry. Excepting my guarded lily gardens, almost every leaf that these hoofed locusts can reach within a radius of a mile or two from camp has been devoured. Even the bushes are stripped bare, and in spite of dogs and shepherds the sheep scatter to all points of the compass and vanish in dust. I fear some are lost, for one of the sixteen black ones is missing.
– John Muir, My First Summer in the Sierra