Because of my experience with horses, I had an opportunity to pay my college tuition doing something I loved. It was far better than pulling weeds or the indoor jobs most other student workers had. I taught a section of “horseback riding” for Physical Education credit, and managed a few strings of horses in the mountain camps where the kids who were from well-off families went in the summer. Teaching horsemanship lore was always a good way to learn. During the college year, I rode horses for people who needed them ready for long trail rides, and worked a few stock sales at the county fairgrounds with the rank horses left in stalls for weeks at a time. I got to work with both the hot blooded and warm blooded stock. For quite a few years I worked with show horses, again to pay for college. Working with “sets”, saddling for the rich, walking them ’til they were dry and putting a sheen on their coats and feet became a specialty. That was me….the groom with the degree.
Obtaining advanced degrees and working in higher education never blunted my interest in old west values and life. My involvement in old west re-enactment re-kindled the interest even more and the urge to write other than educationally related materials became stronger. As I now move toward a life where I have more control over my daily activities, I see more travel in the west and more books and articles to be written by my hand……I ask questions about everything and the search for answers is absolutely rewarding, every time; even if a book does not come from it.
My interest in re-enactment was enhanced by involvement with SASS (Single Action Shooting Society) folks. I am a regular contributing writer to The Cowboy Chronicle which was published monthly by SASS. My column, “The Other Bullet: Re-enactment Review” discusses western re-enactment activities throughout the U. S. With a circulation of 50,000, The Chronicle was the definitive guide to Cowboy Action Shooting.