Frontier Cowboys

Frontier Cowboys and the Great Divide

Early Ranching in BC and Alberta

By (author): Ken Mather
ISBN 9781927527092
Softcover | Publication Date: April 1, 2013
Book Dimensions: 6 in x 9 in
224 Pages
$19.95 CAD

About the Book

Despite being neighbouring provinces with long ranching histories, British Columbia and Alberta saw their ranching techniques develop quite differently. As most ranching styles were based on one of the two dominant styles in use south of the border, BC ranchers tended to adopt the California style whereas Alberta took its lead from Texas. But the different practices actually go back much further. Cattle cultures in southwestern Spain, sub-Saharan Africa and the British highlands all shaped the basis of North American ranching.

Digging deep into the origins of cowboy culture, Ken Mather tells the stories of men and women on the ranching frontiers of British Columbia and Alberta and reveals little-known details that help us understand the beginnings of ranching in these two provinces.

About the Author(s)

Ken Mather has been involved in researching, writing, and interpreting western Canadian heritage for four decades, working in curatorial, management, and research roles at Fort Edmonton Park, Barkerville, and the O’Keefe Ranch since the early 1970s. He is also the author of four previous books on pioneering, ranching, and cowboy history: Ranch Tales, Frontier Cowboys and the Great Divide, Bronc Busters and Hay Sloops, and Buckeroos and Mud Pups.


"With his tight focus on frontier and early ranching personalities in British Columbia and Alberta, Mather gives the reader a colourful, informative, and entertaining insight into two very different ranching frontiers." —Max Foran, BC Studies