Vaquero: Genesis of the Texas Cowboy

Overview

In the early 1970s, noted Texas historian Joe Frantz offered Bill Wittliff a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity?to visit a ranch in northern Mexico where the vaqueros still worked cattle in the traditional ways. Drawn to this land-out-of-time again and again, Wittliff photographed the vaqueros as they went about daily chores that had changed little since the first Mexican cowherders learned to work cattle from a horse?s back. In the tradition of the great cowboy photographer Erwin Smith, Wittliff captured a way of ...
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Overview

In the early 1970s, noted Texas historian Joe Frantz offered Bill Wittliff a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity—to visit a ranch in northern Mexico where the vaqueros still worked cattle in the traditional ways. Drawn to this land-out-of-time again and again, Wittliff photographed the vaqueros as they went about daily chores that had changed little since the first Mexican cowherders learned to work cattle from a horse’s back. In the tradition of the great cowboy photographer Erwin Smith, Wittliff captured a way of life that now exists only in memory and in the pages of this book. Here you’ll find photographs that reveal the muscle, sweat, and drama that went into roping a calf in thick brush or breaking a wild horse to the saddle. Wittliff’s evocative text recalls the humility and pride of men who knew their place in the world and filled it with quiet competence. John Graves brings his own memories of the vaqueros to the text, writing about the kinship between the vaquero and the cowboy and about how “the old, old ways,” which Wittliff preserves in these “lovely and meaningful photographs,” still tug at the modern imagination.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780292705579
  • Publisher: University of Texas Press
  • Publication date: 4/28/2004
  • Pages: 176
  • Sales rank: 817,532
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 12.50 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

BILL WITTLIFF, of Austin, Texas, is a distinguished photographer and writer whose photographs have been exhibited in the United States and abroad. Cofounder, with his wife, Sally, of the highly regarded Encino Press, he is also a past president and Fellow of the Texas Institute of Letters and a recent recipient of the Texas Book Festival Bookend Award. As a screen writer and producer, his credits include The Perfect Storm, The Black Stallion, Legends of the Fall, Lonesome Dove, and others.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction by John Graves
El Campo
La Remuda
La Junta de Las Vacas
La Caballada
La Casa
Los Brutos
Afterword
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