Livestock owners are usually farm managers with great experience who must stay ahead of the herd to control speed and direction of movement, as well as tame unruly cattle or casual workers.
The cowboys took orders and worked for convoys of cattle for money received less than the factory wages paid to skilled workers. Each stockman usually has a certain position in the herd, and each position has a different rate of compensation.
According to the memoir of the cowboy Edward Charles “Teddy Blue” Abbott (from Montana), the cowboy is humble. They were responsible for bringing weak or injured animals, and ended the day with dust clinging to their hats and eyebrows.
Worse yet, dust flew into their lungs causing them to cough up blood after months of strenuous travel. Most of the cowboys escorting the cattle carts were the sons of unemployed farmers, some as young as 12 years old, seeing the escorting of cattle as an opportunity to make money with little effort.
African-American cowboys often earn less and do more dangerous jobs. The Vaqueros also work with herds. Owners know they can ride skillfully and tie their rags, but they pay less than white cowboys. There were a few women traveling in the convoy, mainly the wives of the men in the herd. Having women in the delegation will help make the journey less tedious.
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