A Beautician Bronc Rider – Tillie Baldwin

Anna Mathilda Winger aka Tillie Baldwin was born in Arendal, Norway.  Immigrating to the United States when she was just 14 years old, her first profession in the United States was as a hair dresser.  Her entertainment career began in 1909 when she joined Captain Jack Baldwin’s Wild West show.  She created her stage name, … Continue reading A Beautician Bronc Rider – Tillie Baldwin

Behind the Scenes of History

It is National Finals Rodeo time!  Behind the event is a great deal of planning, organizing, effort from sponsors, stock contractors, and many more.  It brings to mind the importance of history made behind the scenes.  Most history we rememberand study is the major event itself.  But you must look at the factors behind the … Continue reading Behind the Scenes of History

Back to work!

After a long hiatus to complete my Ph.D., I am back to work on the blog.  I will be redesigning a bit and working to develop new pages. Change is in the wind for rodeo. I hope you will check back in to see how these transformations are actually a return to early rodeo history.  … Continue reading Back to work!

The Calgary Stampede – a Tradition of Prestige

At the end of this year's rodeo season, and as the National Finals Rodeo (NFR) approaches, pondering how we came to have a National Finals, or even how some of the biggest professional rodeos became prestigious led me to reflect on my trip to Calgary this summer. When you ask young cowboys and cowgirls just … Continue reading The Calgary Stampede – a Tradition of Prestige

June Cleaver and Miss Kitty Walk into a Bar

Have you ever wondered what would happen if June Cleaver walked into the Long Branch Saloon?  Miss Kitty might eye her up and down to see if Cleaver is trouble, or she might say, “What’ll ya have?” to which Cleaver would probably say, “Tea, dear.” You are likely wondering what these two have in common. … Continue reading June Cleaver and Miss Kitty Walk into a Bar

Sweethearts of the Rodeo

First thoughts of western couples often conjure up Roy Rogers and Dales Evans – Hollywood’s silver screen sweethearts. Roy Rogers and Dale Evans – photo taken at the 61st Academy Awards, March 29, 1989, photo by Alan Light[1] Although Rogers and Evans met through rodeo and he actually proposed in an arena, there were also many famous … Continue reading Sweethearts of the Rodeo

Cowgirls in Cowtown

The brisk change in weather and chance of precipitation are right on cue. Those of us who grew up in anticipation of the Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo could tell when time for the first rodeo was near. As a kid, the excitement of getting to go to the rodeo, and travel to the … Continue reading Cowgirls in Cowtown

Cowgirl Christmases and the New Year’s Rodeo Season

The holiday season in today’s rodeo world kind of kicks off with the end of the season and the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas – but it wasn’t always so. This Christmas break led me to reflect on the lives of the rodeo cowgirls I research, who competed in rodeo at the turn of … Continue reading Cowgirl Christmases and the New Year’s Rodeo Season

Bad Girls and Bimbos in Boots

Bad girls in the Old West was not a term just limited to soiled doves or saloon girls. Bad girls in the West, both in reality and on the silver screen, have come to identify women who refused to conform to society’s assigned gender roles and etiquette expected of a lady in the Victorian West. … Continue reading Bad Girls and Bimbos in Boots

Singing Cowboys and Tone-deaf Cowgirls

Singing cowboys made their entrance onto the silver screen in the 1930s and remained popular through the early 1950s. Perhaps the two most well-known are Gene Autry and Roy Rogers. https://youtu.be/IQIagUuGn5Q Gene Autry and Smiley Burnette singing “Deep in the Heart of Texas” in Heart of the Rio Grande (1942) The singing cowboy actually began … Continue reading Singing Cowboys and Tone-deaf Cowgirls