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The speaker is a 75-year-old White man with a high school education from Laramie, Wyoming; he was recorded in 1967.



County: Albany
State: WY

Commentary:
In the 1860s Laramie sprang up as a settlement along the Overland Trail. Later, the local economy grew with the arrival of the Union Pacific Railroad and a boom in cattle ranching. The vast grass prairies in the valley between the Laramie Mountains and Snowy Mountains made it an ideal area for grazing cattle. In this segment the speaker talks about the family ranch and reminisces about the difficulty of traveling into town ???in the horse-and-buggy days.???
Inf: Well, we have this, uh, we put up about two hundred and fifty ton of hay normally, on normal years, and, uh, _____ runs the cattle and I own the deed and I own the land, and like now on the, uh, sixteenth of this month we???ll move our cattle into the forest, the national forest, for summer rains. We have three and a half months of summer rains on the national forest. And then the first of October these cattle come home and we, we wean the calves and we sell the, sell the calves, all except for replacement purposes. And then the, the cattle are fed hay in certain month-, supplement through the winter. And that???s about the size of, uh, we do-, we don???t do any plowing or anything like that, it???s strictly a grass and range proposition.

FW: Mm-hmm. Must have been quite a, quite a deal to go clear to town before you had an automobile.

Inf: Oh, we had automobiles.

FW: Right from the start?

Inf: Oh, no, not-, not in the early days. We didn???t get automobiles till 1915, ???16. That was the first time that we had a car. But, uh, in the horse-and-buggy days, why yes, it was quite a chore to go to town. We didn???t go very often.

FW: How long did it take you?

Inf: Well, it depends upon how you were traveling. If you had a team and a heavy wagon with a load, it took about six to eight hours. But with a buggy team, as we say, uh, average time was four hours. If we had an exceptionally good buggy horse, it was three hours. And that was, uh, that was quite hard in the wintertime to travel out in the cold, you know.

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