Teddy's Cattle Drive: A Story from History


Adventures on the trail as Teddy Abbott learns how to be a wrangler.
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Adventures on the trail as Teddy Abbott learns how to be a wrangler.
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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
This is quite an interesting book. Kids will pick up a bit of history as they read about the adventures of Teddy Abbott who, at the age of eleven, went on a cattle drive along the Chisholm Trail. The story is based upon the writings of E. C. "Teddy" Abbott, who later spent fifty years of his life as a cowboy. In the story he is a young, sickly-seeming boy, so his father hesitates to take him on the cattle drive, but his mother convinces him that it would do Teddy good. Teddy is eager to go and quite excited when they set off. He does not know that his father would hop on a train after picking up the cattle and leave Teddy to the mercy of the trail boss. The men are not happy to have a tenderfoot along, but Teddy eventually proves his worth and earns his spurs. The adventures of working a cattle drive will keep kids turning the pages, and the illustrations capture the excitement of the ride. The hardships are notable but the story does not fixate on them. Part of the "Children of the West" series and a fine book for kids to read on their own. 2005, University of New Mexico Press, Ages 8 to 12.
—Carolyn Mott Ford
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826339218
  • Publisher: University of New Mexico Press
  • Publication date: 11/15/2005
  • Series: Children of the West Series
  • Pages: 56
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.68 (w) x 10.90 (h) x 0.47 (d)

Meet the Author

Marc Simmons is considered New Mexico's historian laureate and has published over forty books on New Mexico history. Simmons is a former Woodrow Wilson Fellow, a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, and in 1993 the King of Spain granted him membership in the knightly Order of Isabela la Católica for his contributions to Spanish colonial history. He resides in Cerrillos, New Mexico.

Western artist and long-time working cowboy Ronald Kil lives near Santa Fe.

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  • Posted January 22, 2009

    young boy takes part in a cattle drive

    Teddy Abbott was a real person from England who settled in Nebraska in the 1870s and raised cattle which had to be driven to market. Simmons tale of a son of his also named Teddy taking part in a cattle drive is imaginary. But it portrays all of the aspects of a real cattle drive from types of individuals involved in one through a day's activities and potential dangers during it. All the men, including Teddy, have different responsibilities. Teddy's responsibility along with another cowboy is taking care of the 'remuda,' 'a Spanish used used in Texas for a herd of spare horses,' as the book's glossary notes. Because of an accident to his partner, Teddy ends up watching over the remuda on is own. The potential danger of a stampede comes to pass with a lightening strike frightening the herd of cattle which sets the horses of the remuda to running off as well. But Teddy stays with them and brings all the spare horses back to the drive. After the drive, Teddy is given a pair of spurs in a simple ceremony attended by all of the cowboys he had worked with. Not only a story of a rite of passage for a young boy, Simmons' story is notable for its specifics on a cattle drive.

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