In the late 1880s, the Pecos River region of Texas and southern New Mexico was known as “the cowboy’s paradise.” And the cowboys who worked in and around the river were known as “the most expert cowboys in the world.” A Cowboy of the Pecos vividly reveals tells the story of the Pecos cowboy from the first Goodnight-Loving cattle drive to the 1920s. These meticulously researched and entertaining stories offer a glimpse into a forgotten and yet mythologized era. Includes archival photographs.
Along much of its Texas stretch today, the Pecos is only a polluted trickle, squeezing through a jungle of salt cedars that choke banks sloughed and neglected. The modern motorist crossing it by bridge is more likely to greet it with a yawn than with visceral emotion. But were he to read the history buried deep in its banks, he would find the sweat and blood of cowhands who knew this ghost as the most formidable and treacherous river in the West.
Patrick Dearen is the author of seven books, including When Cowboys Die, a finalist for the Spur Award, and three other books on the history of the Pecos River region. He lives in Midland, Texas.