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Serving Up Some Cowboy Wisdom

Cowboying on the largest ranch under one fence is no easy task. Many of the cowboys featured in the book have been at it for decades, working the Waggoner Ranch for 10 hours a day, five or more days a week. Along the way, they’ve learned cowboy skills and a heck of a lot of wisdom. We can all learn from the way Waggoner Ranch cowboys live their lives.

“They are cowboys. They live by another ethic that reveals itself in their work and how they relate to each other. They value people over things. They have a sense of personal responsibility. They know who they are, and they aren’t going to be less than that for anybody.” –from the book

We’ve collected some of our favorite bits of cowboy wisdom and quotes from the book below. Want more? Be sure to follow us on Pinterest where we share Western wisdom, Texas cowboys, and ranch life photographs.

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And the Winner is…

Last week, we announced our one of a kind giveaway: a copy of Cowboys of the Waggoner Ranch signed by Bobby Daniel. More than 200 of you entered the giveaway on our Facebook page. Thank you to everyone who entered and shared it with friends!


Bobby Daniel signed a one of a kind copy of Jeremy Enlow's book Cowboys of the Waggoner Ranch


And now, we are excited to announce that the giveaway winner is Matthew Zeiger. Enjoy your book! It’s truly a piece of Texas history, signed by a legend who worked the Waggoner for more than 50 years.

About Cowboys of the Waggoner Ranch

Made in Texas, by Texans, about Texans, Cowboys of the Waggoner Ranch tells the story of 26 working cowboys on the historic Waggoner Ranch. Photographed and published by Fort Worth based photographer Jeremy Enlow, it has won a number of awards and is currently on its third printing. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the book benefits the Waggoner Ranch Cowboys Fund.


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Waggoner Ranch from Overhead

It can be hard to visualize what a 510,527 acre ranch looks like. On the ground, the Waggoner Ranch looks endless, stretching as far as the eye can see in any direction. To get a better look at the scope of the ranch, Jeremy Enlow photographed the ranch from a Cessna airplane. You can see his aerial photographs of the Waggoner Ranch below.

Wanting to capture just the right moments on the ranch, Jeremy didn’t use a drone for any of the aerial photographs. Instead, he took all of the images himself while flying overhead.  These aerial shots can be seen in Jeremy’s book Cowboys of the Waggoner Ranch. Get yours today and enjoy free shipping in the United States!


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Jeremy’s photographs of the Waggoner Ranch document many iconic aspects of the ranch.  Taken a year before the ranch sold to Stan Kroenke, they capture the ranch right before its historic change of hands, preserving a way of life for future generations. Some things have changed on the Waggoner since then, including the closing of the Waggoner Ranch cook shack. As time passes, this photographic history of the ranch becomes increasingly precious.

Debbie’s cooking philosophy was simple: “Lots of calories,” she laughs. None of it goes to waste. The cowboys filled their plates from the cafeteria-style line up of from-scratch comfort food. When the cook shack was open, Debbie made breakfast and lunch six days a week for the twenty-six cowboys.

You can see more photos of the Waggoner Ranch cook shack here, and what it looked like in the 1980s here.

Jeremy Enlow of Steel Shutter Photography photographed the cow camp at the Waggoner Ranch

It takes a lot of coffee to be a cowboy.

Debbie’s cooking was always mouthwateringly delicious and filling.

Weldon Hawley, right, is always the last to eat and the first to head to work.

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Merry Christmas, Y’all

‘Twas the week of Christmas, and all around the ranch all the cowboys were working the DDD brand. “The only weather we don’t work in is rain and lightning and when it’s too hot for the stock,” says ranch manager Weldon Hawley. Cowboys work ten hours a day, five and a half days a week. “There’s always enough cowboys around for an emergency, like fighting a grassfire or something,” says Jimbo Glover. “Somebody asked me, ‘What do you want to be when you get big?’ and I said, ‘I ain’t going to be a fireman, I’ll tell you.’”


Cowboys practice old-fashioned virtues. “Integrity is what the world’s missing now,” Weldon Hawley says. “There’s a lot of pride in their work, a bunch more so than anywhere else.”

Arriving at the pasture where they’ll work, the cowboys unload their horses and mount up in the faint glow of the moon and their vehicles’ lights.

“To do this, you just have to love it,” says Weldon Hawley. And the Waggoner cowboys do love their work; you can see it in every face as they ride out into the pasture. They are a living image of the American West. And this is an opportunity to see who they really are. These are the cowboys of the Waggoner Ranch.


Whether you’re reading from the city or the ranch, we hope you have a very merry Christmas. Don’t have a copy of Cowboys of the Waggoner Ranch yet? There’s still time to get yours in time for Christmas. Just choose priority shipping by December 21st and it will get to you in time for the holiday!

Order by Dec. 21 for Christmas delivery!

Made in Texas, by Texans

This Christmas, GO TEXAN and give everyone on your list a gift made in Texas, by Texans, about Texans. The largest ranch under one fence in the United States, the Waggoner Ranch is nearly as old as Texas. Texas native Jeremy Enlow spent five months photographing the 26 working cowboys who live there. The result is the award-winning Cowboys of the Waggoner Ranch, a 140 page full color coffee table book printed right here in North Texas.  

GO TEXAN this Christmas when you order Cowboys of the Waggoner Ranch

“Printing bids were much cheaper in Asia, but for this book not only did I want it to be printed in the United States but specifically in Texas,” says Jeremy Enlow. “It is important to me to know the working conditions are safe and people are being treated fairly.  Texans, myself included, are proud of their state.  I consider it a great achievement that this book was 100% made by Texans in Texas.

Texan from start to finish

Jeremy along with John Davidson (editor), Julie Enlow (producer), Jan Batts (copy), Yvette Bowling (design), Julie Hatch (Public Relations/Media) and Hunter Mills (Public Relations/Social Media) are all native Texans. Cowboys of the Waggoner Ranch is proud to be a GO TEXAN product. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book benefits The Waggoner Ranch Cowboys Fund, giving back to some of Texas’ greatest living legends. 

“The book shows we’re still surviving, doing things like they did 100 years ago, the cowboy way.” –  Waggoner Ranch Manager Weldon Hawley quoted in Western Horseman, (March 2016).  Mr. Hawley has worked at the Waggoner since 1976.

Buy the book now and get FREE shipping in the United States!

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Waggoner Ranch cowboy Bobby Daniel retired last week after 51 years on the Waggoner

This Month in Texas: Upcoming Events

We’re traveling around this month, and we want to meet you! Get to know photographer Jeremy Enlow, who was given exclusive access to the Waggoner Ranch and captured more than 14,000 images during his time on the ranch. Find an event location near you below – we’ll be updating this list as we add more events.

December 4 – Dallas
PDNB Gallery
Artist reception and book signing 4-8 p.m.
Full event details available here.
Fine art prints will be on display December 4-19

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The Cross on the Wall

The cross hanging on the wall in the cook shack isn’t a decoration.  There was no slick preaching or theological discussions going on across the lunch table to prove it, but the values of the cowboys are easy to see.

Waggoner Ranch Manager Weldon Hawley, foreground, is always the last to get his plate for lunch.  He waits at the cook shack, sometimes an hour or so, until all the cowboys, children, and ranch workers come in for lunch and all fill their plates buffet style. When the last person is finished making their plate, only then will Weldon get his lunch and return to his seat at the head of the table to enjoy the home cooked meal.

Corporations spend a lot of time and money working to figure out how to foster a positive and productive working environment.   Maybe all they need to do is look up at the wall every now and then.


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