Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Lives on the Frontier
By examining the lives of four people who lived in the "frontier west," we will examine the effect of the frontier myth upon their lives, and what their lives tell us about the lives of others living in the West.
Becoming a man
Nat Love, because cowboys like Love have been written out of the history of the west--because Love was a former slave, and African American.
Of the four brief biographies presented, only Haywood was a native of the region (and, more ironically, Haywood had his greatest successes as a labor leader in the East). The other three moved West to create new lives for themselves. Roosevelt and Jones moved West after suffering tremendous personal tragedies, and after some time in the wilderness, found their life's calling. Love later fell into one of the few careers open to a black man of his educational standing, working as a Pullman Porter. The only reason we know of his life as a real cowboy was that he published an autobiography in 1921, just before his death. The lives of these four people demonstrate that life in the West is much more complex than the myth would lead you to believe.
Posted by Gregory M. Miller at 8:43 PM