Collection Items

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    Buckaroos in Paradise: Ranching Culture in Northern Nevada, 1945-1982 Includes 41 motion pictures and 28 sound recordings, motion pictures produced from 1945 to 1965 by Leslie Stewart (owner of the Ninety-Six Ranch), 2,400 still photographs drawn from the Center's ethnographic field project conducted 1978-1982 and from historic photos dating 1870-1958. Background essays provide historical and cultural context for this distinctive northern Nevada ranching community. Buckaroos in Paradise: Ranching Culture in Northern Nevada, 1945-1982...
    • Contributor: American Folklife Center - Library of Congress. National Digital Library Program
    • Date: 1998

    Collection Items: View 2,441 Items

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    Related Resources Glossary | Selected Bibliography
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    Rights and Access The Library of Congress is not aware of any U.S. copyright protection (see Title 17, U.S.C.) or any other restrictions in the material in this collection, except as noted below. Users should keep in mind that the Library of Congress is providing access to these materials strictly for educational and research purposes. The written permission of the copyright owners and/or other holders of rights...
  • Article
    The Founding Years, 1864-1910 Fredrick William Stock, who was born near Exten, Hessen-Kassel, Germany, in 1837, founded what is now called the Ninety-Six Ranch. His name in German was Friedrich Wilhelm; the family's records variously spell it Friedrick or Fredrick. He was apprenticed to a cobbler at fourteen but abandoned the pursuit after two years and came to America. He arrived in New York in 1853 and proceeded...
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    The Ranch after 1910 Three children inherited the ranch; Elizabeth had died in 1904, and the property passed to William F., Edith, and Minnie. William F. was paralyzed by a runaway horse accident in the early thirties and died in 1936, vesting ownership in his two sisters and their families. Minnie married and moved to Sacramento, leaving the actual operation in the hands of Edith and her husband,...
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    The Sagebrush Rebellion, 1960-1982 During the 1960s and 1970s, the impact of the environmental movement was felt in the West, particularly in areas with extensive public lands. In Nevada, nearly 90 percent of the state's land is overseen by a variety of federal agencies, including the U.S. Air Force, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and the U.S. Forest Service. Most Nevada ranchers lease public grazing lands...
  • Article
    Buckaroo: Views of a Western Way of Life This essay originally appeared in Buckaroos in Paradise: Cowboy Life in Northern Nevada, published by the Library of Congress in 1980 and republished as a Bison Book by the University of Nebraska Press in 1981
    • Date: 1998
  • Article
    At the Ranch Ninety-Six Ranch buckaroos playing poker at the Hartscrabble line camp, 1978 Trail Drive Nature and weather control life in the range cattle industry as in farming; battles with foul weather and tough landscape are waged year in and year out. A rancher is almost completely dependent upon the natural water supply to keep the bunchgrass in the high country and in the desert growing...
  • Article
    Bunkhouses and Line Camp Cabins Cabin interior, Bradshaw Cabin, Ninety-Six Ranch Bunkhouses shelter buckaroos. The same shelter may be called by different names, depending on location and use: bunkhouse, cabin, line camp, buckaroo camp, cow camp. A bunkhouse is usually thought of as a small house on the home ranch that serves as a permanent home for employees, whether buckaroos or hands. With one or more rooms, there is...
  • Article
    Cattlemen Were Farmers First Lithograph of Stock Farming Company, ca. 1881 When William Stock, Batiste Recanzone, Jim Byrnes, the Lye brothers, and the other early settlers unloaded their wagons and set up homesteads in Paradise Valley, they were coming to be farmers and sheep growers as much as to be cowmen. The range cattle industry as we know it today was just beginning in the middle 1860s, and...
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    Clothing Typical buckaroo clothing in bedroom of Rusty and Peggy McCorkell, Reed (Read) Ranch Like the many costumes worn by Americans for the performance of different jobs and chosen roles in society, the cowboy's clothing is distinctive. It developed according to the requirements of the profession--boots, chaps, neckerchiefs--but with a certain style of its own that is particularly "American" and more particularly "western." The western...
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    Emigrants, Miners, Railroads, Ranchers [Detail] Portrait of Mr. And Mrs. John Forgnone at their ranch The area that became Nevada was only sparsely settled when the region of Upper California was given over to the United States by the "Mexican Cession" (Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo) in 1848. It had barely been explored. Gold and silver ore still lay undisturbed by pickaxes and black powder gangs. By the time...
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    Irons Branding Iron Branding livestock is an essential piece of work performed by ranchers and buckaroos. A brand is the special mark or identifying design owned by a rancher and used in registering and identifying his cattle and horses. A branding iron is the handmade iron or steel tool that applies the mark to the beast. The end with the owner's brand is pressed against...
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    The Cowboy's Creed Portrait of Zane and Reinhold "Tex" Bonnet Oh, when I die, you just bury me Away out west, where the wind blows free. Let cattle rab my tombstone down, Let coyotes mourn their kin. Let horses come and paw the mound, But please, don't fence me in.
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    The Cowman's Dominion Landscape, Cassinelli (Mill) Ranch The broad region that encloses Nevada is variously called the Intermountain West, the Basin and Range Province, and the Intermountain Sagebrush Province. It includes southeastern Oregon, southern Idaho, southwestern Wyoming, western Colorado, Utah, Nevada, and California's eastern slope. During his second long exploration of 1842-43, John C. Frémont called this massive continental trough spreading from the Rockies to the Sierras...
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    Vaqueros Roping, Ninety-Six Ranch In the Great Basin range cattle industry, the vaqueros came first--not Anglo or black cowboys, but Hispanic California horsemen. In the Spanish colonial days before the cattle business developed, vaqueros worked mostly for hide and tallow companies in California. Later, as Anglo ranches and herds were being built up, the European-American pioneers employed Mexican vaqueros, and the vaquero traditions of horsemanship,...
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    Working Painting Main Ranch Gate The buckaroo life has undergone many changes since its nineteenth-century beginnings. Yet the object of attention is still the cows. Methods of working cattle and dealing with the land are learned by practice, by watching and listening to older hands, and by imitating and varying accepted models. The rules and standards, once learned, can be varied according to one's personal...
  • Article
    Branding Branding, like haymaking, was conducted in much the same way throughout the valley. Unlike haymaking, however, it was largely unmechanized. The work involved roping the calves from horseback and dragging them to a position where buckaroos on the ground held the animals and branded them. In addition to branding, the calves were earmarked and medicated, while the male calves were castrated. There were small...
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    Haying All of the ranches the team visited from 1978 to 1982 made hay in very similar ways. First, the alfalfa or native grasses were cut and laid in windrows by a swather. Depending on how well the cut plants were curing in the sun, the crop might also be turned and windrowed again by a rake. Once cured, a baler bundled the hay into...
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    Irrigating The team learned that the irrigation of hayfields in the valley was carried out in a far less uniform manner than haying, representing every stage in technology from the mid-nineteenth to the late twentieth century. Hayfields were irrigated on the Ninety-Six by flooding, with the water directed through a system of ditches by wooden and metal headgates. This older approach was also seen on...
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    Old and New The folklorists, historians, and archeologists who carried out field research during the Paradise Valley Folklife Project documented a wide range of cultural phenomena, old and new. For example, one project researcher carried out an in-depth study of the valley's vernacular architecture, documenting not only turn-of-the-century stone, frame, and adobe buildings, but also newer tract houses, mobile homes, and metal pole barns. Activities on the...
  • Article
    Interviewing Leslie Stewart The folklife research project team conducted a lengthy interview with rancher Leslie J. "Les" Stewart on May 9, 1981. Most of the formal interviews in the Paradise Valley Folklife Project were recorded on audio tape, but this interview, intended to complement our motion picture footage, was videotaped.
    • Date: 1998