Ned Pepper: "What's your intention? Do you think one on four is a dogfall?"  Rooster Cogburn: "I mean to kill you in one minute, Ned. Or see you hanged in Fort Smith at Judge Parker's convenience.
Which'll it be?"   Ned Pepper: "I call that bold talk for a one-eyed fat man."   Rooster Cogburn: "Fill your hand, you son of a bitch!"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    from the 1969 production of True Grit
Cowboys, Gunfighters, Outlaws and Lawmen from America's Western Frontier
"Cowpoke"
1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1880
"Gunman and Wife"
1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1885
"The New Mexican"
Carte de Visite Formatted  Tintype
c. 1880
"The Packers"
Mounted Photograph
c. 1905
"The Long Rider"
1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1880s
"Saddle Tramps"
1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1880
"The Gamblers"
1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1880
"Back of the Wagon"
Carte de Visite Formatted  Tintype
c. 1870s
"The Ruffians"
1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1870
"Fancy Pants"
Cased 1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1870
"Jesse Butler Cupp"
Real photo Postcard
c. 1900
"Three Amigos"
Carte de Visite
c. 1880
"Meskwaki (Fox) Indians"
Cabinet Photograph
c. 1885
"Bank Checks- Pima County Bank"
Tombstone, Arizona Territory
November 12, 1880

September 6, 1881
"Canadian Cowboy"
1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1880s
"In Apache Country"

Ben Wittick - Photographer

Fort Wingate, Arizona Territory
c. 1890
Cabinet Photograph

Merritt Dana Houghton - Photographer

Fort Washakie, Wyoming
c. 1880s
"Union Pacific Photo Car"
Cabinet Photograph
c. 1885
Private Clyde G. Wilson
&
Corporal Elmer Brick

20th Kansas Volunteer Infantry Regiment

Carte de Visite
Manila, Philippine Islands
c. 1899
There are those rare instances when research into
the identities of soldiers in an old photograph turns
up far more than one would have guessed possible.
This carte de visite of Private Clyde G. Wilson and
Corporal Elmer Brick of M Company, 20th Kansas
Volunteer Infantry is an example of just such an
occasion. As it turns out one of these men - Private
Wilson to be specific - was a key protagonist in one
of the Old West's last "range wars", the so-called
Dewey-Berry Feud which was fought out in
Wilson's home state of Kansas in 1903.

Clyde G. Wilson was born on 5 December 1876 in
Iowa the son of William Oliver Wilson and the
former Clara Burk. The family had...
"Old Timer"
1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1870
"Man With No Name"
1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1870s
"On the Winter Range"

Unknown Photographer

Northern Plains, United States
c. 1900
"The Cowpuncher"
1//4 Plate Tintype
c. 1870s
"The KId"
1//6th Plate Tintype
c. 1870s
"The Cold Stare"
1//6th Plate Tintype
c. 1870s
"Idaho"
Stereoview
c. 1905
"The Shavetail"
Cabinet Photographs
c. 1882
"The Buffalo Hunters"
1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1870
"The Townsfolk"
Cabinet Photograph
c. 1890
English Bob: "Well, actually, what I heard was that you fell off your horse, drunk of course, and that you broke your bloody neck."  Little Bill Daggett: "I heard that one myself, Bob. Hell, I even thought I
was dead 'til I found out it was just that I was in Nebraska."
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         from the 1992 production of Unforgiven
"Doc"
Mounted Photograph
c. 1905
Doc Holliday: "Why Johnny Ringo, you look like somebody just walked over your grave." Johnny Ringo: "My fights not with you, Holliday." Doc Holliday: "I beg to differ, sir. We started a game we never
got to finish. 'Play for Blood,' remember?" Johnny Ringo: "Oh that. I was just foolin' about." Doc Holliday: "I wasn't."
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        from the 1993 production of Tombstone
"Green River"
Mounted Photograph
c. 1905
"The  Cowhand"
Full Cased 1/6 Plate Tintype
c. 1870
"Old No. 1"
Half Cased 1/9 Plate Tintype
c. 1870
"Cousin Rudolph"
Mounted Photograph
December 1899
"Little Mary"
Half Cased 1/6th Plate Tintype
c. 1870
"Pards"
Cabinet Photograph
c. 1880s
British Soldier Costumed  
as a Cowboy

Bangalore, India

Real Photo Postcard
Early 1900's
This real photo postcard's title is from
Marty Robbin's famous Country Western
ballad
Streets of Laredo which goes in part: "I
can see by your outfit that you are a cowboy..."
and this young British soldier seems to have
doing his level best to portray one of the
storied denizens of America's Wild West.

Although we will never know exactly why he
chose to dress the part of a cow puncher or
perhaps a gunfighter one might guess it was
for a role in a regimental theatrical
production.

The "outfit" in question consists mainly of
British military items adapted to double for
their Old West counterparts: two holsters
and a 'Bowie" knife slung low on a leather
cartridge belt, a bandanna worn neckerchief
style, perhaps being a veteran of the
Anglo-Boer War he wears a campaign hat of
the type worn in South Africa as stand in for
a cowboy hat.
"The Railroad Men"
Cabinet Photograph
c. 1888
Black Cowhands

R. B. F. Craig - Photographer

Ballinger, Texas

Mounted Photograph
Early 1900's
Although the precise number will never be
known it is estimated that about one in four
cowboys were in fact of African descent.

The cattle industry that is so firmly associated
with the Old West had its origins in Texas and
it can be assumed that prior to the Civil War
the overwhelming majority of black cowboys
were in fact slaves. With the end of the war
and emancipation it would have been natural
for these men to continue on in the trade they
new best - but now by choice and for a daily
wage.

The era of the great cattle drives from Texas
north to Abilene and Dodge City in Kansas did
not last long but indelibly shaped the
character and reputations of the men who
took part in them regardless of race, creed or
even national origin.

Taken in the heart of Texas cattle country,
this photograph depicts two young black men
who appear to be very late 19th or early 20th
Century cowhands.
Evocative of changing times, this image
depicts two young Lakota members of the
Sioux Nation dressed western style
clothing. Possibly husband and wife or - to
my eye - brother and sister, they
represent the end of the traditional way of
life for Native Americans - an end which
began in 1492.

The reverse side of the photograph bears
a very faint pencil inscription that
supposedly states that two young people
were the adopted children of a local
minister. The inscription is unreadable
even under enhancement so the veracity
of this possibility cannot unfortunately be
confirmed.

In an attempt to place this photograph
into a larger historical context I contacted
the Akta Lakota Museum & Cultural
Center located in Chamberlain but...  
Young Lakota Man and
Woman in western dress.

Barton - Photographer

Chamberlain, South Dakota

Cabinet Photograph
c. 1890s
"Funding the Vendetta"
Tombstone Consolidated Mines
Stock Certificate
c. 1900
Prentice Ritter: [narration] We're all travelers in this world. From the sweet grass to the packing house. Birth 'til death. We travel between the eternities.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      from the 2006 production of Broken Trail
"Bridging the Continent"
Northern Pacific Stock Certificate
c. 1882
"Compadres"
1//4 Plate Tintype
c. 1870s
"Texans"
1//4 Plate Tintype
c. 1870s