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The Log of a Cowboy: A Narrative of the Old Trail Days

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Gambling cowboy realistic quotes

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Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Thomas McGuane Introduction. Here he charts his first journey as a bona fide cowboy, from south Texas to Montana along the western trail. Guided by his plainspoken, sure-saddled voice and the living, breathing feel of firsthand experience on every page, we relive dusty cattle drives, perilous river crossings, honor-based gunfights, and narrow escapes from buffalo stampedes, not to mention tall tales passed around the campfire and such unforgettable characters as Bull Durham and Bill Blades.

Get A Copy. Paperback , pages. Published November 20th by Mariner Books first published More Details Original Title. Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about The Log of a Cowboy , please sign up.

Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. This book was published in The author, Andy Adams, was born in in Indiana, grew up on a livestock farm there, and eventually became a cowboy in Texas in the last two decades of the nineteenth century.

He knew cattle drives from personal experience, and after leaving the horseback life, moved to Colorado and began writing fiction about what he knew best: cowboys and cattle. I reckon the truth of the matter is a little different. McMurtry was very likely familiar with the book. It could have even given McMurtry the idea of writing a novel about a cattle drive from Texas to Montana in this case the drive terminates in Fort Benton Montana, near a Blackfoot Indian Agency — the cattle are to feed the Indians.

Well, there are other things in common, I admit. But there are a few differences. The introduction by Richard Etulain quite informative informs us told you that the book was confused with non-fiction repeatedly by both critics and readers. For one thing, it reads like non-fiction.

There is nothing about the cattle drive that is not entirely believable in it. Also think about how exciting that log might be. Think about sawing those logs — zzzzzzzzz; or falling off them — now that might be a little bit exciting.

And the stories that these cowboys tell around the camp fire in the evenings? Wow, talk about long, drawn out affairs that are maybe as interesting and rousing as … hmm …maybe one of those logs with ants crawling on it? But as I said, it does give what one would suppose is a pretty realistic notion of the nuts and bolts of a late nineteenth century cattle drive, a long one from Texas to Montana. We learn that the remuda horse herd included roughly ten horses for each rider. This indicates how often the cowboys had to change mounts in stressful situations, and how they had to plan for horses to be out-of-commission for a variety of reasons, such as losing a shoe, or becoming slightly injured.

Those pain-in-the-ass stampedes? They happen fairly often in Lonesome Dove, often play a minor role in the plot, and generally get resolved in a paragraph or two describing what might have had to be done over a period of time perhaps stretching into several hours.

In Log no stampede described is resolved in a paragraph. With no trouble at all I was able to find a description of a stampede which goes on for eight pages before all the cows, horses and cowboys are back together. So one does learn that stampedes were a real bother on a cattle drive, and the source of an awful lot of the hard work needed of the cowhands.

The turn-of-the century sensibilities are on display here, and though not numerous, these bits of the narrative are more than a little irritating.

And those fictional cowboys? The most noticeable thing is the way they talk. They all seem to talk as Andy Adams, the literary story teller, might be imagined to talk. All the talk is along these lines. To be sure, if she took a smile to this stranger, no other fellow could check her with a three-quarter rope and a snubbing post.

So, the talk, although striking my ear as certainly not what I would expect from the mouth of a cowpuncher, could be just as accurate as the descriptions of the cattle drive details. To hear Adams tell it, the main attractions of having a day and night in places like Dodge City or Ogallala was gambling and maybe a bit of something to drink. A brothel? Never mentioned.

I did enjoy this book enough to finish it, even though sometimes I felt like I was being pulled along behind a horse with a rope around my neck. If you want the real low-down on what these drives were like, this will likely be satisfactory. View all 8 comments. Sixteen years after the Civil War whose very mention can still inflame hearts. A twenty-year-old's first cattle drive from the Rio Grande to Montana. Over 3, head of cattle. Five months. Whores and gunfights. If you are a snowflake or a pajama boy, you will need several days of therapy in a safe room after experiencing this manly narrative from back in the day.

Andy Adams was a cowboy for 12 years. In , flat broke and annoyed by the plethora of ridiculous books that purported to depict the true-life adventures of cowboys, he decided to try his own hand at writing a novel. The result is a beautifully written book, filled with fascinating detail of everyday life on the trail in , as a team of 12 cowhands, 1 cook, 1 horse wrangler and a foreman drive cattle from Brownsville, Texas to the Blackfoot Indian Reservation in Montana.

If you are tired of the typical Hollywood trashy view of cowboys whoreing it up while on a silly shooting vendetta, then this book is a great way to reset that sterotypical view of western cowboys created by lowbrow Californians. Andy has a very down to earth writing style that reflects his years in the cattle hearding business.

The Log of a Cowboy places the reader right in the middle of the birth, life, and end of cattle drive from texas to Montana. The reader is taken into the day to day If you are tired of the typical Hollywood trashy view of cowboys whoreing it up while on a silly shooting vendetta, then this book is a great way to reset that sterotypical view of western cowboys created by lowbrow Californians.

The reader is taken into the day to day lives of driving cattle while at night we are treated to campfire stories of life experiences of each team member. The ending of this book is by far the best that I have read in a long while. This book is overall a great portal into what it was like being a true cowboy when America was built on the backs of men.

This story is not for weakspirited millenial who is too easily offended. Mar 25, Luke Parra rated it it was amazing Shelves: western. I read this many years ago. As I recall, it is very true account of the early days and life on the cattle drives.

Many of these came through New Mexico and many of the drovers were Hispanic. Apr 18, Ron rated it it was amazing Shelves: early-westerns. Andy Adams was a prolific writer, and thanks to the University of Nebraska Press, some of this former cowboy's output is still in print.

This true-to-life story of an cattle drive is his best known, and its retelling years later in Larry McMurtry's "Lonesome Dove" is evidence of its importance among early works of Western fiction. Here the protagonist is a young cowboy much like the author, who trailed beef from Texas to Montana at a time just after the buffalo herds were being Andy Adams was a prolific writer, and thanks to the University of Nebraska Press, some of this former cowboy's output is still in print.

Here the protagonist is a young cowboy much like the author, who trailed beef from Texas to Montana at a time just after the buffalo herds were being extinguished from the short grass prairies and homesteading had not yet fenced in the high plains. Oklahoma was still "Indian Territory," Little Big Horn was a recent memory, and Native Americans were in the last shameful stages of being forced off the open rangeland. The railroads were snaking across the land making frontier boom towns where law and order either prevailed Dodge or more often did not Ogallala , and the vast cattle herds of Texas and Mexico finally had a market and access to it.

Adams was born into this world and as a young man cowboyed during the height of the cattle drive era. His book is an account of one trek, delivering 3, head of cattle to the Blackfoot Agency in northern Montana. For the protagonist, the initial excitement wears off once the daily routine is established, and besides the occasional stampede and wet weather, the highlights of the journey are brief visits to the cowtowns they pass along the way and the many river crossings, some of which pose enormous difficulties.

We get to know all the men in the outfit by name, and a few stand out, including Flood the foreman, McCann the cook, and the protagonist's trail mate The Rebel, who is older and wiser and something of a mentor. Other personalities emerge, primarily around the campfire on nights when the men get to swapping stories.

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