Publishers & Wholesalers of Contemporary Western & Americana Art

Charley Russell

Rustlers Caught at Work
Click on Image for Larger View
Item Number: R10 (Full Set of 10)
Publisher's Price: $800.00
Image Size: Embossed 16"x 10"
Paper Size: 18"x 24"
Edition Size: 50 Sets
One of the picturesque types of the cattle range days was the "rustler." In the early days,.a hard-working cow puncher drew extra pay for capturing unbranded cattle running on the range and they were accustomed to "get out and rustle" for calves.

Eventually, cowpunchers saw building their own herds as a quick way to fortune and, as a result, hundreds of new brands appeared. As competition for feeding ranges developed in the industry, the big outfits combined against the little ones and it was made a range law that no cowboy employed by an outfit should be allowed to own a brand of his own. Action of this sort started a long drawn-out warfare between the big cow outfits and a considerable number of formerly honest cowpunchers who believed that their rights were being encroached upon and who soon found themselves classed as outlaws.

The ranks of the rustlers became augmented by all sorts of hard and dissolute characters. As the rustlers grew in strength, the cattle barons banded together as vigilantes to crush, and often lynch, rustlers. It was only with the end of the open range that the end of rustling came to a lawful end.


Charley Russell