President’s Day

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Us punchers sling no haughty style,
Nor go we much on manners;
We look on dudelets out this way
As only fit for “canners;”
And that is why you hear us cry
We’re always glad and ready
To throw our hats and let a yell
In honor of our Teddy.
…by Robert V. Carr

Here’s a Presidents’ Day salute to the cowboy president, Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919), the 26th President of the United States.

In 1905, a group of “wild and wooly” cowboys, most from the Black Hills region, were invited by their friend, President Theodore Roosevelt (“Teddy” to them), to take part in his inaugural parade. The “Cowboy Brigade” was organized by Captain Seth Bullock of Deadwood, South Dakota.

The poem above is by Robert V. Carr (1877-1931), who was one of the of 60 cowboys. Tom Mix was also a member of the group.

Missouri ranch manager Carl Steiger, along with others, has been researching the identities of the cowboys in the Cowboy Brigade, “trying to find their stories before they are lost forever.” See our feature about the Cowboy Brigade, which includes articles by Seth Bullock and others and much more about the search at CowboyPoetry.com.

Find more about Robert V. Carr and more of his poetry in our feature here.

This 1903 photo is captioned, “Cowboys following the train and cheering President Roosevelt, Hugo, Colorado.” It’s from The Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

Find a trailer of a documentary filmed on location at the Roosevelt ranches, Theodore Roosevelt: A Cowboy’s Ride to the White House.