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FOLK COLLECTION 11: The Skaggs Foundation Cowboy Poetry Collection

Date of Items: 1890-present
Register Prepared by: Randy Williams and Susan Gross, April 2004
Register Updated by: Randy Williams, 23 December 2009
Excel database transfered to MYSQL and uploaded (replacing PHP data): Colin Jackson, Fall 2010
MYSQL database updated: Randy Williams, January 2012
Linear Feet:20

Historical Note & Provenance

Folk Coll 11 is Utah State University's cowboy poetry collection. The collection, originally created by a generation donation by the L. J. and Mary Skaggs Foundation, includes books gathered during a fieldwork project in the early 1980s to document cowboy poetry in the U.S. west (see Folk Coll 11f). From this important fieldwork project came the impetus for the first Cowboy Poetry Gathering held in January 1985 in Elko, Nevada. Since that time, each January, the Fife Folklore Archives staff take the collection and Access database (that details each book, poem, author, first line and key words), to the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering for offsite use. Through University purchases and generation donations from poets and collectors, this collection continues to grow.

Scope and Content

The collection consists of 20 linear feet of books on cowboy poetry, including press and self published works. The collection can be accessed through USU Libraries online catalog.

As well, poem titles and keywords found in each book in the collection are included in the database below. To use, type in the search term. Tip: Try and use an uncommon word from the poem to ensure less "hits." For instance, if you enter "boots" you will get many hits; but if you enter "bones" you will most liley get fewer "hits" or poems and find the item you seek faster. To return to the search page, click "home" at the bottom of the page.


Poetry table.

First Previous Next Last
IDBook TitleComposerIndexPagesAuthorPoem TitleFirst LinesKeywords
22612 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 75 Lucy S. Burnham (To Our Boys In Uniform) There's something in a uniform That sets our boys apart A grace and manly purpose That tugs at my old heart.
22613 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 76 Lucy S. Burnham A Trail So Old And Winding A trail so old and winding, Leads on thru a meadow of grass, To a house neath the trees still guarding, The dreams of a bare-foot lass.
22614 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 77 Lucy S. Burnham My Baseball Hero I've been flirting something awful All this glad, hot summer long, With a dark eyed base ball player Young and handsome and so strong.
22615 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 78 Lucy S. Burnham Spring I felt it in the cool fresh air this morning, The intangible sweet herald of the spring, I sensed it as I opened wide my window, And suddenly the birds began to sing.
22616 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 1 Stu Campbell Buckaroo Prose: I was workin' out in Nevada on a good cow outfit with some real good hands and a good string of horses. There was about ten of us buckaroos, counting the reps from other outfits.
22617 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 5 Stu Campbell Rustler! Prose: Back in the old days, I guess a feller could get in a lot of trouble branding his neighbor's stock with his own iron. From what the old-timers tell me, when a feller was caught red-handed, if he wasn't shot trying to get away,
22618 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 7 Stu Campbell Christmas Joy Prose: Last Christmas, the most practical gift I received was a pair of long johns. This set of winter underwear was regular "old time" style, one piece, from neck to toe with buttons up the front and back.
22619 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 8 Stu Campbell The Makins' of a Good Horse Prose: At one dude outfit I worked on, they didn't own any horses. They leased them from a horse trader up around Riverton, Wyoming. Most years they'd get the same horses back in the spring
22620 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 12 Stu Campbell Just a Kid's Horse Prose: I was sittin' over a cup of coffee out in Nevada, out of a job and wonderin' what I would do next. The outfit I was workin' on let all their buckaroos go, promisin' us a job when the fall gather started.
22621 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 14 Stu Campbell Runnin' Backwards Prose: I was workin' on an outfit that was located right in the middle of some real good hay growin' country. The outfit I worked for run a couple of hundred cows an' sold surplus hay.
22622 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 16 Stu Campbell Fancy Broomtails Prose: I don't think there's a cowboy alive that doesn't like to run horses. I know I do. On the dude outfits I worked on, I'd generally bring the horses in on a run.
22623 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 19 Stu Campbell A Familiar Habit Prose: I buckarooed out in Nevada for some time on quite a few different cattle outfits, some good, some not so good. I enjoyed the work and liked seein' new an' different country
22624 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 21 Stu Campbell Goin' Home Prose: A loose cinch has caused plenty of cowboys a lot of problems. Most of the time, a feller will ride with a cinch just tight enough to keep the saddle in place under normal conditions.
22625 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 22 Stu Campbell Chocolate Chip Prose: Runnin' a dude ranch can be a pretty good job, as long as the ranch is set up to handle the guests. But when the ranch doesn't have the facilities to handle dudes, guests or freeloaders can be a problem and a nuisance.
22626 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 24 Stu Campbell Drifter Prose: Drifter was a good lookin' sorrel horse that come to the dude outfit early in June. From his looks, I figured him to be 'bout half Arab and half Quarter.
22627 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 26 Stu Campbell A Real Cowboy Prose: When I was goin' to college, I took a couple of colts to break so I could earn some extra money an' help out with the expenses. I was gettin' a dollar a day to ride these colts an' I figured it was worth it just to be able to get away from the books for a while
22628 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 28 Stu Campbell The Talker Prose: One of the necessary jobs on a cow outfit is shoein' horses. All cowboys are expected to do it, but I never met any that really liked it. I know I sure don't like it an' I generally feel a lot better when my horses was shoed
22629 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 30 Stu Campbell Saddle Sores Prose: A few years ago I was running a dude ranch up in the Grand Teton country of Wyoming. It was a pretty little ranch with some real good horses, nice country and nice people. It had the makings for a nice year.
22630 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 31 Stu Campbell Making a Name for Myself Prose: It was time to move camp. We figured it was time because we were having to ride about 15 to 20 miles from camp every day to make a gather.
22631 More Horsin' Around FC 11 C-54 34 Stu Campbell Range Hoss Manners Prose: Horses have always been a big part of ranch life in northern Nevada and southern Idaho. Most of the ranches keep broodmare bands just to fill their remudas. One such outfit I worked for maintained 80 broodmares in different bands.
22632 Still Horsin' Around FC 11 C- 55 1 Stu Campbell All Tied Up Prose: We'd spent the biggest part of the mornin' corralin' about 1.000 head of steers- yearlin's. It had been pretty tough, the cattle was wild and the country was tough on men an' horses both.
22633 Still Horsin' Around FC 11 C- 55 2 Stu Campbell Given' Enough Rope Prose: When I was about 13 or 14, I had the makin's of a good hand. I could ride some, I'd been on a buckin' horse or two an' hadn't got throwed- too hard anyways.
22634 Still Horsin' Around FC 11 C- 55 5 Stu Campbell A Draw Prose: When a feller hires onto a new outfit, he never knows what kind of horses he'll be given to ride. So I was mighty closed-mouthed the first morning we saddled up on the S dot.
22635 Still Horsin' Around FC 11 C- 55 7 Stu Campbell Matched Team Prose: That day, I was sort of embarrassed. I had a job to do and I didn't want to do it. It was an easy enough job just ride a horse 15 or so miles home and lead another horse.
22636 Still Horsin' Around FC 11 C- 55 9 Stu Campbell Excuses Prose: There's more than one way to get off a horse. The first way- the one we all like- is simple, just swing a leg over and put it on level ground.