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Film, Video Why Rancher Les Stewart Shuns New Technology for Branding

About this Item


  • Why Rancher Les Stewart Shuns New Technology for Branding


  • Stewart, Leslie J. (Narrator)
  • Fleischhauer, Carl (Interviewer)
  • Wilson, William A. (William Albert), 1933- (Interviewer)

Created / Published

  • May 9, 1981


  • -  Ninety-Six Ranch
  • -  Activities
  • -  Branding
  • -  Cattle chutes
  • -  Buckarooing
  • -  Ranching
  • -  Ethnography
  • -  Motion Pictures


  • Ethnography
  • Motion Pictures


  • -  Les Stewart describes why he prefers traditional methods of cattle ranching on the 96 Ranch rather than using cattle chutes and other mechanical methods of prodding and branding cattle.
  • -  I asked Les why the Ninety-Six does not use a system of chutes and a mechanical calf table to brand calves. In his response, Les mentions the chute, the "hot shot" electric cattle prod, and remarks that it is drudgery to "tip that chute [i.e., table] over all day." The phrase is nearly identical to one from Texas cattleman John Erickson: "Running calves through a chute is work, wrestling calves is fun." (Erickson 1981,136)
  • -  Les's answer does not dwell on technology or technique, but rather emphasizes values and beliefs. This statement is drawn from a portion of the interview in which he repeatedly invoked ranching traditions to account for his choice of methods. Here he tells us that such traditions are important for their own sake, and says that buckaroos may work harder if there is an element of danger in the job. Just after making this statement, he added the idea that roping was easier on the animals than working them through a chute, but this addition was very much an afterthought.


  • 3/4 inch video

Call Number/Physical Location

  • AFC 1991/021: NV81-VT4

Source Collection

  • Paradise Valley Folklife Project Collection (AFC 1991/021)


  • American Folklife Center

Digital Id

Online Format

  • video

Rights & Access

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The Buckaroos in Paradise collection includes copy photographs of numerous historical still photographs, works of art, and other objects that are owned by the families or individuals identified in bibliographic records for those objects. The collection also includes audio and video interviews with individuals who consented to the inclusion of these selections here.

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Credit line

Paradise Valley Folklife Project collection, 1978-1982 (AFC 1991/021), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Stewart, Leslie J, Carl Fleischhauer, and William A Wilson. Why Rancher Les Stewart Shuns New Technology for Branding. May 9, 1981. Video.

APA citation style:

Stewart, L. J., Fleischhauer, C. & Wilson, W. A. (1981) Why Rancher Les Stewart Shuns New Technology for Branding. May 9. [Video] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Stewart, Leslie J, Carl Fleischhauer, and William A Wilson. Why Rancher Les Stewart Shuns New Technology for Branding. May 9, 1981. Video. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.