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From the time we left the main camp until they were loaded on the cars at Nickerson, Kansas, the cattle were never left along for a minute day or night.

J. H. HARSHMAN, Trail Driver
The Round-Up by Remington

While researching the cattle trailing industry for my newest book KEEP ‘EM FULL AND KEEP ‘EM ROLLIN’, I came across one historian who referred to the cow wranglers during the great cattle driving era as “glorified cow walkers“. The reasoning as he explains is that “cows are dumb” and they generally move in the same direction that everybody else is moving. I’m still mad about that.

If you take away the unruly Texas Longhorns, try riding your horse for a thousand of miles across open country. What these men accomplished, making the rules up as they went, is truly amazing. The hardships they faced and the last minute decisions between life or death is heart-wrenching.

I have been so close to that limit that on one or two occasions I would get a little piece of chewing tobacco from one of the men and, mixing it with saliva, would rub it on my eyelids. This is great treatment when the thoughts seem to be bent on having a nap.

JIM COOK, Trail Driver

The cook got us up about two hours before dawn. Which was just as well, it was so damn cold ya couldn’t get any sleep anyway, the snow was 4 inches deep on our tarapulins.

DALE R. KINSTON, Trail Driver

The trail drivers had many narrow escapes and were exposed to many storms, cyclones, hail and all kinds of weather, stampedes of cattle, running over ditches and bluffs at night. Some few never came back but were buried along the lonely trail among the wild roses, wrapped only in their red blankets; no human being living near, just the coyote roaming there.

W. F. CUDE, Trail Driver

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It’s almost here!

My new cookbook launches June 15. This project began long, long ago pre-COVID, and finally after what seemed like forever, it’s almost here. Woo hoo! I am so excited for you to be able to get your hands on this book. And thanks to those of your who have pre-ordered or inquired.

If you don’t have a fire pit, no worries. The cow camp recipes selected for this book can be easily prepared and cooked in your kitchen. You’ll find authentic recipes from the trail as well as modern, cowboy approved dishes from experienced chuck wagon and ranch house cook houses. Dig out your best cast iron kettle and stir up a taste of the old West for your family.

Natalie Bright is the author of the upcoming book, KEEP ‘EM FULL AND KEEP ‘EM ROLLIN’: The All-American Chuck Wagon Cookbook. With over 100 recipes, cattle drive history, archival photos, and her own Texas ranch photography, you can bring a taste of the old West to your kitchen! Along with coauthor Denise McAllister, she has created a new series set in Texas. The Wild Cow Ranch is a western Christian romance published by CKN (Wolfpack). She is also the author of the Trouble in Texas series for middle grade readers and an easy reader series about rescue horses.