Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Arizona, Here I Come!

Before I get into today's main topic, I have happy news. I just signed with Northern Lake Publishing, a new company run by Craig Hart, a mystery writer whose writing I admire. He specializes in publishing mystery and suspense, and will be marketing my Romancing the Guardians ebooks. I'm excited about this opportunity.

Now for my other news. A month from now Hubby and I will be in Arizona on a combination vacation and research trip. First, we will visit my niece and her family near Phoenix. Then we’ll drive to the northeast corner of the state, to the town of Chinle in the Navajo Nation. The Navajo named this area Ch’ini’li, meaning “where the water flows out”, referring to water flowing out of nearby Canyon de Chelly, which we plan to tour with a knowledgeable Navajo guide.

First anglicized as Chin Lee, the name was changed to Chinle on April 1, 1941. Long before that, the location served as a center of trade and war for the Spanish against the Native Americans. Later, Chinle was the site of an 1864 peace conference between Kit Carson and the Navajo, ending their war with the U.S.
Kit Carson, ca. 1860s; public domain

The Chinle community was established after the Diné (Navaho people) returned from the Long Walk, when thousands of them were forced from their homes and marched over 300 miles to Fort Sumner, New Mexico. A number died along the way. To learn more about that terrible walk, read this article:   https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_Walk_of_the_Navajo

Navajo at Fort Sumner, 1864; public domain

After the Treaty of 1868 was signed, Navajos returned to their homelands and many families came back to Canyon de Chelly and the Chinle area. The first trading post (only a tent) was established there in 1882. This grew into a camp by 1885. A government school was established in 1910.

Canyon de Chelly has provided food, water and shelter for groups of people for over 5,000 years including Archaic, Basketmakers, Ancestral Puebloans, and Hopi.  Today, about 40 Navajo families live and farm in the canyon which limits access into the area.

Nearly 84,000 acres of tribal lands were established as Canyon de Chelly National Monument under the National Park Service by President Herbert Hoover on February 1, 1931.  To better manage the park, the National Park Service is working with the Navajo Nation, Bureau of Indian Affairs and other stakeholders to establish a cooperative management agreement.

Notable areas in the park include Spider Rock, White House Ruin, Antelope House Ruin and Mummy Cave Ruin. And I’m going to see them all. I can’t wait!

Where we will stay in Chinle; Our guide will pick us up there. Shouldn't be snow in late April. I hope!

Lyn Horner is a multi-published, award-winning author of western historical romance and romantic suspense novels, all spiced with paranormal elements. She is a former fashion illustrator and art instructor who resides in Fort Worth, Texas – “Where the West Begins” - with her husband and a pair of very spoiled cats. As well as crafting passionate love stories, Lyn enjoys reading, gardening, genealogy, visiting with family and friends, and cuddling her furry, four-legged children.

Amazon Author Page: viewAuthor.at/LynHornerAmazon (universal link)
Newsletter:  Lyn’s Romance Gazette http://eepurl.com/bMYkeX
Website:  Lyn Horner’s Corner 

Sunday, March 18, 2018

First White Explorer of Wyoming by Sarah J. McNeal

I always wondered who the first white explorers were to step into the country we now call Wyoming. I was quite surprised to find it was the French who first explored Wyoming.

From 1742 to 1743 the Verendrye brothers were the first European men to explore the land from the Great Plains to the Rocky Mountains of Wyoming. Not much would have been know about their exploration if a journal had been found in the French archives in 1851. The journal was difficult to interpret, but a lead plate was also discovered buried near Pierre, South Dakota. I find it amazing that, in all that big, wild country, someone found a lead plate. The journal states the journey was made by the Chevalier Vérendrye and his brother who was not identified. It is assumed the Chevalier was Louis-Joseph Gaultier and his brother, Francois de La Verendrye.

The Verendrye Family Map of their operations

Previous to the Verendrye brothers exploration, the French founded Quebec City in 1608 and quickly built a fur-trade empire throughout the Saint Lawrence River basin. They expanded southwest into the Mississippi River from 1690 to prevent the English from going beyond the Atlantic Coast. The Spanish Villasur expedition left Santa Fe to contact the French in 1690, but they were stopped by the Pawnee in Nebraska. The first European crossing of the Great Plains was accomplished by Pierre Antoine and Paul Mallet who traveled from the Mississippi River to Santa Fe in 1739.
The elder Verendrye and his four sons began their French trading business and exploration west from Lake Superior on the Canadian Prairies in 1730. Eight years later, the elder Verendrye and two of his sons left Fort La Reine from the south of Lake Manitoba into Mandan country in North Dakota on the upper Mississippi River. He had heard rumors of “River of the West” believed to flow into the Pacific Ocean. According to what he was told, it would take an entire summer to reach the lower part of the river where he would find armored Frenchmen who rode horses. He left two of his men to learn the language and report back to him in 1738. The following year, September 1739, his men reported that every summer the Horse People went to the Mandans to trade. The Horse People spoke of a bearded white man to the west who lived in a house of stone and prayed to the “great master of life” while he held what appeared to be husks of corn. In 1741 the younger Pierre, the younger son, visited Mandans, but there is no record of what occurred on that visit. In 1743 the elder Verendrye sent two of his sons to find the “Sea of the West.”
The two Verendrye brothers headed west to the Rocky Mountains, but the journal they wrote is difficult to decipher because of modern geographic and tribal names. Because their astrolabe was broken, there are no latitudes noted in the journal.

Relief Map of Wyoming

Later, others interpreted their journal as best as they could and determined the Verendrye brothers reached either the Big Horn Mountains, the Laramie Mountains, or the Black Hills.
On this map, the Big Horn Mountains are in the north center. To the west is the Big Horn Basin and, beyond that is the Yellowstone Country. The Laramie Mountains are actually a projection of the Laramie Mountains. The North Platte is just north of the Laramie Mountain. The Black Hills are just east of the map.

The Chevalier Verendrye, his brother, and two more Frenchman left Fort La Reine on April 29, 1742 and reached the Mandan village on May 19. They waited there for two months for the Horse People who didn’t show up, so they found two Mandan guides and headed west southwest on July 23. They traveled for twenty days through a land they described as having multicolored soils and plenty of animals, but no people.
Finally, on August 11, they reached the the mountain of the Horse People. Their guides would go no further, so they built a camp and lit signal fires. On September 14, a month later, they saw smoke on the horizon in apparent answer to their signals and met the Handsome People and stayed with them for 21 days. On October 9 they headed south southwest with a Beau Homme (Handsome Man) guide. They met the Petits Renards (Little Foxes) on October 11, and the ‘Pioya’ on October 15.
At last, on October 19, they reached the Horse People who were in dire circumstances because all their villages had been destroyed by the Gens du Serpent (Snake People.) Two years prior, the Snake People had destroyed seventeen villages, killed the men and old women, and took the young women to be sold at the seacoast. The Horse People said they had never made it to the sea because the Snake People blocked their route. The Horse People suggested the Verendrye brothers seek the Gens de l’Arc (Bow People) who were said to be the only tribe courageous enough to fight the Snake People. I have to say here that I like all these descriptive names given to the different tribes of what I am assuming are the Indigenous Americans. The brothers stayed with the Horse People for a while before they headed southwest to meet the Gens de la Belle Riviere on November 18.
On November 21, the brothers met up with the Bow People. Their chief told the brothers he knew about the “French on the sea coast” and said they had many slaves that were so happy they didn’t run away. He also said they had officers and priests and used horses to work the land. When the chief spoke some words of these people, Verendrye recognized the language as Spanish. The Bow People were also familiar with the annihilation of the Villasur expedition twenty years before.
The Verendrye brothers joined the Bow People who were making their way to “the great mountains near the sea” planning to fight the Snake People. They zigzagged their way west gathering more warriors as they traveled until they had more than 2,000 warriors plus their families. By January 1, 1743 they came within sight of the mountains and journeyed through the great prairies filled with many wild animals.
On January 9, the warriors left the women, children, and the Verendrye’s baggage behind in the camp. The Chevalier’s brother stayed behind in the camp to guard their belongings. The warriors reached the very high mountains which were heavily wooded on the “twelfth day.” Their scouts discovered the Snake People had hastily abandoned their village. Some of the warriors feared the Snake People were headed to their camp to attack while the warriors were gone and left the party to return to camp to protect their families in spite of the chief’s efforts to stop them. The Chevalier had no choice to go back with them, but there was no further sign of the Snake People after that. So much for those fearsome Snake People.

A conjectural Map of the possible route of the Verendrye expedition, 1742-1743

The Bow People assembled warriors broke up into smaller groups to hunt for meat. The brothers stayed with the Bow People until March 1 who traveled east by southeast until one of the Frenchmen with them and a guide went ahead to contact the Gens de la Petite Cerise (Little Cherry People). On March 15, the Frenchman and the guide returned with an invitation to join the Chokecherry People who were returning to their fort on the Missouri River. They met a man at the fort who had been raised by the Spanish who told them it would take twenty days by horseback, but it would be dangerous because of the Snake People. He also told them of a Frenchman who lived three days’ journey away. On March 30, the Verendrye brothers buried the lead plate on which their journey was recorded.
They left Pierre on April 2 and, on the 9th, met with twenty-five families of the Gens de la Flêch Collée (Glued Arrow People) also called the “Sioux of the Prairies.” The party reached the Mandans on May 18. They joined a party of 100 Assiniboines who were going to Fort La Reine on May 27th. They were ambushed a few days later by a Sioux war party, but the Sioux withdrew because of the number of Assiniboines and French guns they faced. They rested their horses at a “village near the mountains” on June 2 and, on July 2, 1943, they reached Fort La Reine completing their journey. 

The La Verendrye brothers’ Historical Marker at Fort Pierre, South Dakota

The lead plate the brothers buried was found in Pierre, South Dakota in 1913 and now resides in the South Dakota Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre. The dimensions of the plate are six by eight inches. The front has a die-stamped Latin inscription referring to Louis XV, Pierre La Verendrye and the year 1741. On the back is scratched “Placed by Chevalyet de Lave, Louis la Londette, A Miotte, March 30, 1743. Londette and Miotte are most likely the two Frenchmen who traveled with Francoise and Louis-Joseph Verendrye.
Francois returned east to serve in the army during the Seven Years’ War. He died July 31, 1794 in Montreal, Canada. He was one of two brothers to use the title “Chevalier”, the other being his brother Louis-Joseph. With his death, the name La Vérendrye disappeared.

I am always so impressed to read about these early explorers for their dedication and perseverance to accomplish their task. I would have quit the expedition at the mention of those Snake People. Later on there would many other explorers to this rugged country, but the Verendrye brothers were the first white men recorded to lead the way deep into the west.

Sarah J. McNeal is a multi-published author who writes diverse stories filled with heart. She is a retired ER and Critical Care nurse who lives in North Carolina with her four-legged children, Lily, the Golden Retriever and Liberty, the cat. Besides her devotion to writing, she also has a great love of music and plays several instruments including violin, bagpipes, guitar and harmonica. Her books and short stories may be found at Prairie Rose Publications and its imprints Painted Pony Books, and Fire Star Press and Sundown Press. She welcomes you to her website and social media:

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Fighting Infection in the Nineteenth Century

Many months I struggle for an idea to blog on. This month, I've been fighting a sinus infection, so decided I'd investigate how infection was treated in the 1900s.

We know that the invention of antibiotics and antimicrobial therapies are one of the greatest achievements of modern medicine. We also know that they're highly overused and as a result, our systems are becoming immune requiring the development of stronger antibiotics. We must use antibiotics responsibly.

Courtesy Google Images
So, let's talk about blood, leeches and knifes. Bloodletting originated in Egypt in 1000 B.C. and continued in use until the middle of the 20th century. All the way up until the 1940s medical texts recommend bloodletting for a multitude of conditions but mainly for infections.

Courtesy Google Images
Ancient medical theory is that the four major humors of the body—blood, phlegm, black bile, and yellow bile—must remain in balance. It was believed infection was caused by an excess of blood, so a vein was opened and blood released. Or hot glass cups, called cupping, were place over the skin. The heat would cause small blood vessels to break and cause bleeding under the skin. Then there were the leeches.

Oft times, the blood letting was performed by barbers or barber surgeons. Think of the barber pole—red, white and blue. It was an advertisement for their blood letting services.

"There may actually have been some benefit to the practice - at least for certain kinds of bacteria in the early stages of infection. Many bacteria require iron to replicate, and iron is carried on heme, a component of the red blood cell. In theory, fewer red blood cells resulted in less available iron to sustain the bacterial infection."

Natural chemical elements and chemical compounds  were used for a variety of infections, wounds and syphilis. Topical iodine, bromine and mercury containing compounds were used to treat infected wounds and gangrene during the American Civil War. Bromine was frequently used but painful either injected or applied topically and often caused tissue damage and side effects were optics neuritis, seizures, fever, kidney injury and rash.

In 1943, penicillin was developed and remains the first-line therapy for all stages of syphilis.

Plants used for treatments. Quinine, from the cinchona tree is used to treat malaria. Another effective treatment is Artemisinin (sweet wormwood) plant.

Honey was used  by the Sumerians in 2000 B.C. "The high sugar content can dehydrate bacterial cells, while acidity can inhibit growth and division of many bacteria. Honey also has an enzyme, glucose oxidase, that reduces oxygen to hydrogen peroxide, which kills bacteria."

A medical grade honey—MEDI-HONEY—is used to promote healing in burns and other wounds.

Courtesy Google Images
It is my understanding that there are also medical grade leeches. I'm sorry, but I'll pass when it comes to leeches.  How about you?

I've read many books where they've used some of these treatments in treating wounds and diseases. If you can think of some, please share.

Reference:  Vice Dean, Texas A&M College of Medicine, Texas A&M University

Thanks for stopping by and Happy Reading and Writing!

Linda LaRoque

Monday, March 12, 2018

Writing the paranormal

by Rain Trueax

the supernatural world in a book

After having written novels for many years, the first time the paranormal crept into one was in 2002, for a book that I had no intention of even submitting for publication-- at least at that time. It was with baby steps and some trepidation that I dipped my toe into the world of the supernatural. My hesitancy came from requiring that I learn about parts of life on earth, which might be real and definitely would be scary if they were. I still regard it as something to approach with respect and care, which is why I put the break here for those who are not interested or might be reluctant to approach the supernatural world through a different lens-- that of the paranormal romance.

Sunday, March 11, 2018


For starters we're all saying it wrong. It's daylight saving time and not daylight savings time. Picky, picky people who lay down the grammar rules say that it's saving because saving, in this instance, is an adjective not a verb, therefore we've must use the singular form. Will you remember that ten minutes from now? If you are like me, you won't. So we can all merrily use the wrong form and know that we're in good company because the vast majority say savings.
Many people are under the misconception that it's something we've been doing forever, besides old Ben Franklin started it. WRONG! Old Ben only wanted a change in sleeping schedules. His late nights and early ups were killing him. After imbibing a little too much and not having sufficient time to sleep it off, universally changing sleep times seemed to him to be an excellent thing to do. Sometimes it's very difficult to keep your own advice. Except, it never happened.
Ben Franklin had various people who followed him over the years, championing the concept
of having more light later in the day, thus saving candles. It took WWI for people to adopt the idea of daylight saving time. Germany, the enemy, jumped on it first, April 30, 1916, and then Britain followed calling it "summer time." The USA was a little late coming into the idea. It took until March 31, of 1918 to get around to it. We called it "war time." And it was repealed in 1919.
Since then it's been an on-again off-again sort of thing with the dates varying and politics at the center of it. Some states and cities kept the idea of saving some summer sun. That created havoc for travelers and broadcast companies that serviced wide areas. Check your local listings were sheer havoc if you wanted to watch a favorite TV show and lived in an area that didn't observe but received broadcasts from areas that did.
In the 1970's a study was done showing it only saved about 1% of our nation's energy. In the early 2000's, another study showed it was costing us more than 1% because of the air conditioning usage and gasoline. Apparently the people benefiting from the savings of sunshine are the retailers, tourist connected businesses, and the gasoline companies.
If you travel by train, Amtrak will do everything possible to make certain you arrive on time at your destination. Even if that means stopping on the tracks at 2:00 AM and waiting for an hour so that you arrive at your destination on time. Thank you, Amtrak, for that kindness, but I would rather arrive too early and spend one less hour on the train.
Most of the population of the USA have lived under the concept of springing forward and falling behind for 100 years. Like millions of people, from all over the world, caught in the spring forward time warp, remember the notion of spring forward just cost you an hour of sleep that will take, on average, a week for your body to adjust. It will raise your electrical bill if you use air conditioning. When you pay that higher electrical bill and spend an extra tank full of gasoline, don't forget to thank your political representatives for finding a way to "save" us energy costs. Somehow those good old days are looking better and better. 
Maybe not. They didn't have any air conditioning, running water was dicey, baths were few and far between, and women were expected to wear those long dresses no matter how hot it was.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018


No, this is not a story about a man and his musical instrument. It is a love story of two amazing people who created a life together with John’s two children and multiple foster and adopted children of every conceivable background.  It is a story of romantic, familial and communal love.

          John Horton Slaughter was born to Benjamin and Minerva Mabry Slaughter on a southern plantation in western Louisiana on October 2, 1841. The family, including brother Bill, soon moved to East Texas where John was schooled. Southern traditions ran strong in the family including slavery; John served in the Confederate Army during the Civil War.  He was also a Texas Ranger until establishing a cattle drive enterprise near San Antonio, with Bill and some cousins, in 1874.
John married Eliza Adeline Harris in 1871 and soon had four children with her. Moving into New Mexico/-Arizona Territory found the family settling along the north-flowing San Pedro River on their cattle ranch. By 1878, the two youngest children, a boy and a girl, and Adeline died. Small pox claimed Adeline and perhaps the children also. John took his surviving children to East Texas to be cared for by his brother and wife or to Tucson to stay with friends; the stories and details vary.
In Texas, John paired with one “Cap” Amazon Howell to trail Texas Longhorns back to the Territory. Cap and his wife MaryAnn had a young daughter, Cora Viola, who was 18 years John’s junior. It made no difference to Vi (John’s name for her) but a lot for her Mother, When the couple wanted to marry, Mother threw the proverbial hissy-fit, alarmed that the poker playing, gambling, gunfighter and cattle driver would ruin her daughter’s life. The wedding took place in 1879 and lasted until John’s death on February16, 1922.

Image result for texas john slaughter
At Vi’s request, John’s 6 year old daughter Adele (Adeline?) and 19 month old Willie (William?) were reunited with their father and new step-mother. Vi thrilled at her new role as wife and mother, especially when it became apparent that she would never birth a child of her own.

 By 1886, the San Pedro Riverranch prospered and John was active in politics as well. He ran for Cochise County Sheriff and served two terms from 1886 to 1890. The family moved to Tombstone for the duration, giving the children and Vi’s young brother who had joined the family the opportunity to attend school.
Texas John earned the reputation of being hard on criminals, especially cattle rustlers like the Clantons. He put out a warning often to “leave the county or else!” He was not inclined to bring rustlers or murderers back to the then county seat of Tombstone for trial and hanging at the community’s expense.

Image result for john slaughter ranchImage result for texas john slaughter

At 5’6”, slim and trim, John Slaughter carried a mantle of authority and no-nonsense. He used a pearl handled pistol for much of his life. When a beloved friend who’d come to his San Bernardino Ranch to help and was murdered, by one of the adoptees, John set the pistol aside for good.

Image result for john slaughter ranch Image result for john slaughter ranch

Image result for john slaughter ranchJohn and Vi bought the 65,000 acre San Bernardino Ranch (an old Spanish land grant) that straddled the Mexican Border in 1884 for $1.25 an acre. One-third of the ranch was in the US and two-thirds were in Mexico. Vi ‘s parents, Cap and Mary Ann Howell, lived on the huge property with Cap managing it while the Slaughters lived in Tombstone. When the 1887 earthquake hit in mid-afternoon, rumbling north out of Mexico, the Howell adobe house collapsed as did other similar structures.
Image result for john slaughter ranch

On finally leaving town for the ranch in 1890, Vi and John developed their roles with dedication and commitment. Her duties were to run the large and enlarging household and day-to-day management of their needs. She undoubtedly oversaw the running of the kitchen, the commissary, laundry and other domestic operations. John’s responsibility as always was to attend to ranch management whether developing ponds for pleasure and irrigation, constructing and overseeing the repair of fence-lines, building the many necessary structures running the cattle and developing business interests off and on the property. They shared the care of the children they took in and watched out for their many employees and their families.

Image result for john slaughter ranch

Known as Auntie Slaughter, Vi appears to have been a vivacious, outgoing, and resourceful woman. She is described by Betty Barr in her book, A JOHN SLAUGHTER KID, in several vignettes as adventurous almost to a fault, racing horses or motorcycles, open-hearted and generous, highly organized. She had some rules and standards all were expected to respect. While Vi may have had 25 to 40 people at her dinner table, they were not to wear spurs, the exception being John, had to be on time or find their own meal in the gallery, with good conversation prevailing. Music, dancing, singing, games, hunts and swimming were favorite and it seemed Vi may well have been at the center of many of those activities. One story has it that she learned to play John’s favorite game of poker, skillfully sliding cards up her sleeve! Photos show her with a huge, joyful smile while John appears nearly dour, especially in informal shots.

          Readers please look for Part 2 of John and Viola's story on April 6, 2018

                        Photos: Slaughter Ranch website and Google Images

Arletta Dawdy lives in Northern California but travels extensively in Cochise County and other regions of the Southwest. She draws her stories from the wealth of materials that cross her path, especially those of strong women of the 19th Century, both real and imagined. Her books include:  Huachuca Woman, By Grace and Rose of Sharon. You can find her on Amazon, Facebook, and her website:  www.Arletta Dawdy.com

Sunday, March 4, 2018

THE COWBOY UNIFORM by Cheri Kay Clifton

     When it comes to our cowboy hero, we picture him wearing his most treasured possessions, his hat and his boots.
      But how about the other garments the cowboy wears?  Although less legendary, his other clothing was just as important, especially for their practical use.
      For instance, the neckerchief, also called the bandana.  The simple square of cotton was folded around the neck so that it could be pulled over the nose and mouth to mask trail dust.  Not only to protect his neck from the blazing sun, the kerchief also could be used as a bandage, a tourniquet or to wipe the sweat off his brow.

      The bandana originated in India and came from the Hindu word, bandhnu, describing a method of dying. The 19th Century cowboy soon had made a fashion statement, the scarf worn in popular bright colors, preferably red and in printed designs of spots, calico and later, paisley.

       His long-sleeved shirts were collarless, made of neutral colors of cotton for summer, wool for winter.  Some had a heavier bib front panel for extra warmth.  Not until the Wild West shows became popular, did the cowboy start wearing fancier colored, embroidered shirts.

      An iconic piece that says “cowboy loud and clear,” is the vest. A cowboy spent much of his time in the saddle and found it difficult to reach into his pockets astride a horse.  The vest with deep pockets was convenient for holding small items such as a knife, money, tobacco or a pocket watch attached on a chain. 

      Most of us western writers already know the history of Levi Strauss and his patented canvas work pants that provided the cowboy with a much sturdier pair of pants than the baggy woolen pants he’d worn before, and of course, it wasn’t long before the cotton blue fabric, denim became the work pants of choice.

      Another addition to the working cowboy’s gear is the seatless leather pants called chaps, derived from the Spanish word, chaperejos, meaning leather breeches. They protected his legs while riding the range full of dense brush and cactus as well as providing another layer of warmth in the winter. In the northern states, some wore goat hair pants. Wide chaps protected the flanks of the horse and the cowboy could put them on without taking off his boots; other styles were narrow and tight around the rider’s legs and were sometimes called leggings or shotguns.  

      Also worn on the trail by cowpokes to protect their clothing from the dust of cattle drives was the loose-fitting long duster coat.  These duster coats usually had slits up the back for riding ease, but often had the capability to be buttoned closed.  Legs straps were included to help keep the flaps in place and later versions included a detachable cape or hood to help fight against the elements.  The improved fabric was usually light colored canvas or linen type cloth.  Eventually, the duster needed to be improved as a reliable raincoat, thus the oilskin duster or slicker was born.

      Spurs are one of the distinctive pieces of equipment that have been used by horsemen throughout the ages and certainly one of the most recognizable symbols of the western cowboy. 
      The very old word derives from Anglo-Saxon spura, to kick.  The generalized sense of “anything that urges on, stimulus” is recorded in English from circa 1390.

      In the days of chivalry, spurs and the metal from which they were made were a mark of rank.  Hence the expression “to earn your spurs.”  Today they are a standard piece of cowboy equipment and, as with most horse equipment, the design varied widely depending upon the region and the wearer.
      Spurs are designed to be worn in pairs on the heels of riding boots for the purpose of directing a horse to move forward or laterally while riding.  It is usually used to refine the riding aids (commands) and to back up the natural aids (the leg, seat, hands, and voice).
      In the U.S. spur styles have changed through the years. In colonial days, the English style was popular, the spurs were light and conservative with a slight curve and small rowel.  Straight shanked hunting spurs were also popular. 
      The regulation spur worn in the cavalry in 1882 was solid brass, slightly curved, with a small rowel, leather straps and brass buckle.  The same type was popular during the Civil War.  Early cavalry officer’s uniform required boots and spurs.  They had a standard version, a dress version that was lighter, and an extremely light dance spur for social functions.
      Many a cowboy liked wearing his spurs for show, adding “jingle bobs” near the rowel to create a jingling sound when he walked.

      Gauntlet gloves were a necessity on the trail and cowboys often wore wrist cuffs to protect the wrist, forearm and shirtsleeve from injury or damage by ropes, branding irons, brush, wire fencing and other hazards.  

      Last but certainly not least….one more necessary item worn under it all….
Long Johns.  Worn under the cowboy’s working clothing, long johns, or one piece underwear covered the body from neck to ankle and had a long buttoned opening down the front. 
            One may ask where such a garment got its name.  A British etymologist and writer, postulated that the “john” in the item of apparel may be a reference to the late 19th Century famous heavyweight boxer, John L. Sullivan, who wore a similar-looking garment in the ring. This explanation, however, is uncertain and the word’s origin is ultimately unknown.    
            So, there you have our handsome cowboy dressed from head to toe!

            Happy Trails To You!

Giddyup!  Grab your reins and  read
 my epic historical western romances in the Wheels of Destiny Trilogy. I'm now writing the third book, Yesterday's Journey, a time-travel.

Book 1, Trail To Destiny - A turbulent cross-country journey
of heated passion, bitter vengeance and a haunted
past lead Grey Wolf & Laura on their Trail To Destiny.

Book 2, Destiny's Journey - Family deception kept Jennifer O’Malley from marrying her first love ten years ago, West Point officer, Glen Herrington.  Now a Civil War widow, she leaves war-torn Richmond, determined to find her destiny.  She makes the long journey west in search of Glen, only to discover he is a notorious outlaw with a price on his head.