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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
25990 Brush Poppers: Original Cowboy Poetry FC 11 P-38 58 Dale Page My Old Saddle In the room where I've put ev'ry trophy and keepsake And the photos which prove I am all that I claim, Sits a saddle I bought with my word stitch, shine, rancher, concotion, sold
25991 Brush Poppers: Original Cowboy Poetry FC 11 P-38 60 Dale Page Lodgepole Lullaby Like a song without music or lyrics, Or a verse without meter or rhymes, Comes the wind through the tops of the lodgepoles Linnet Maxey, Box Elder, frontier, dream, promise
25992 Brush Poppers: Original Cowboy Poetry FC 11 P-38 63 Dale Page His Master's Voice Near a twisted old pine 'neath the high timberline Where the eagles still soar and the cougars still roam, Dennis Nazelrod, Jana Sinclair, teapot, dog, wife
25993 Brush Poppers: Original Cowboy Poetry FC 11 P-38 65 Dale Page The Endless Chase There are white-faced cattle calling to their weanling heifers bawling In the pen down by the river where the apple orchards stand. Gretchen Sammis, promise, sleep, rain, resignation
25994 Brush Poppers: Original Cowboy Poetry FC 11 P-38 69 Dale Page Copper Queen Hotel A cowman sat in the restaurant Of the Copper Queen Hotel, Ate steak as fine as a man could want And some fresh peach pie as well. Bisbee, AZ, mop, wealth, ghost, scarf
25995 Brush Poppers: Original Cowboy Poetry FC 11 P-38 73 Dale Page Just One More Day On a wooden bench on the courthouse lawn, Where the old men spit and whittle, Sits a youthful pair like two bookends there For their elder in the middle. Chisholm Trail, train, steer, kiss
25996 Brush Poppers: Original Cowboy Poetry FC 11 P-38 77 Dale Page In the Middle of Nowhere I woke in the middle of nowhere And there's nowhere that I'd rather be. I don't give two bits for a city; I would rather be here and be free. sing, hide, tune, journey
25997 Brush Poppers: Original Cowboy Poetry FC 11 P-38 79 Dale Page Women and Horses The river's relentless in falling and turning To make its escape from the mountain terrain. Then, seemingly tired of its tumbling and churning, Uncompahgre River, flood, chores, soft, obstacle
25998 Brush Poppers: Original Cowboy Poetry FC 11 P-38 81 Dale Page Grandpa's Last Ride My grandfather's photo sits there on the shelf, His old eyes shining honest and clear. He wears a slight grin, like he's proud of himself, Carolyn Rambo, The Nairn Place, cow, rainfall, tales, knowledge
25999 Brush Poppers: Original Cowboy Poetry FC 11 P-38 84 Dale Page My Best Friend There's no sound but saddles creaking; neither one of us is speaking. We communicate in ways known but to friends. Like the finest team of horses, Paula, gaols, remember, fear
26000 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 3 George Rhoades After the Chisholm Come along, boys, Listen to my tale, I'll tell you what happened To the old Chisholm Trail. It came to an end A century ago or more, Now it's paved and fenced And concreted o'er, vehicles, clover, farm, legends
26001 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 5 George Rhoades Boots They've closed the boot factory, Shut 'er down for good; Town tried to keep it going, Worked hard, did all it could. It started way bakc long ago When herds pushed up the trail, sale, color, leather, toes, China
26002 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 7 George Rhoades Branded And Bridle-Broke I worked the cattle ranges From Waco to San Angelo, Tryin' to make a cowhand Where cactus and mesquite grow. Wild and free as can be, Ridin' and ropin' my middle name, rich, paycheck, rodeo
26003 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 9 George Rhoades Break A Leg I don't want a play On old Broadway, But I'll gladly go Behold the rodeo. The Great White Way Ain't what I'd say, If asked what's best To hold my interest. Catchy tunes, chorus, stage, gate
26004 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 10 George Rhoades Bullets I am the bullets, The shells, the ammo, the cartridges; I do the job, I do the work. I go where I am sent, Where I am aimed. I do not hesitate, I do not discriminate, I do not waver; effective, gun, quiet, blame
26005 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 11 George Rhoades Casino Paradise The Apaches and the Comanches, The Cherokees and the Shawnees, The Kiowas and the Choctaws, The Chickasaws and the Tonkawas; Indian casinos by the score, thrill, poker, slots, profit, defeat
26006 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 13 George Rhoades Comin' Home Sold the calves at the Comanche sale; Down off the ridge, Pullin' the rusty empty trailer Across Beaver bridge. Past the cattle guard, wired-up gate, diamond, shelter, weather, far
26007 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 15 George Rhoades Cowboy Boot Christmas Cotton crop thin and weak That year along Beaver Creek; Christmas time hard and grim, Outlook ahead bleak and dim. Wind howled sharp outside; tree, floor, innocent, happiness, hope
26008 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 17 George Rhoades Cowboy Heart The old man gripped a cane With gnarled and wrinkled hands, Sat down beside me there In the rodeo arena stands. He said "I was marked With the cowboy brand spirit, worst, jobs, rifle
26009 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 20 George Rhoades Cowboys Around The World In Argentina, They got gauchos, And down in Mexico Are the vaqueros, And in Colombia Ride the llaneros, and in Hungary You find the csikos. There are drovers Out in Spain, Swiss, Australian, American
26010 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 22 George Rhoades Coyote Calls Coyotes thrive-From Panama down south To Alaska up north, In the country, In the city, Deserts and timber and mountains and lake shores, They coyotes are there. cry, mate, trickster, hillside
26011 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 23 George Rhoades Cringe The old cowboy pushed back his hat, Took another sip of beer, And in his Texas drawl softly said, "Lookin' back, to me it's clear" I've done some things that I regret mistake, memories, regrets
26012 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 25 George Rhoades Down Another Street Why did they block Main Street off today? I couldn't get to the mall With all that stuff in the way. 'Twas a funeral parade For that Bumpass lad, The one who joined the Army, Was a cowboy like his dad. Billy, battle, country
26013 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 27 George Rhoades Horny Toads, Workin' Cowboys Two vanishin' species I saw today; Both rarely seen, Relics from yesterday. There's still a few Left hangin' on, Managin' to survive But almost gone. yard, spurs, cowpoke, smoke
26014 After the Chisholm FC 11 R-45 29 George Rhoades How the Longhorn Got Its Horns The kids all said to Windy John, "Tell us a tale from long, long ago, But tell us a true one, Windy John, not one that's maybe true, maybe no" calf, dog, prairie