J. Frank Dobie

 

 

   

 

 

Apache Gold and Yaqui Silver

 

Buried vaults stacked with gold bars, secret caches of coins and jewels plundered from the Spaniards and the Church, exposed veins of ore with nuggets the size of turkey eggs. Guarded by the bones of dead men, the legendary treasures of the Southwest still wait for those foolhardy or desperate enough to seek them.
Death is the cure for gold fever, and the lucky few who saw the riches and lived to tell of them spent the rest of their lives searching, haunted by faulty memories, changed landscapes, and quirks of fate. It is the stories of these men and the wealth they pursued that J. Frank Dobie tells in Apache Gold and Yaqui Silver.
In this masterful collection of tales, Dobie introduces us to Pedro Loco, General Mexhuira's ghost, the German, and a colorful group of odd fellows driven to roam the hills in an eternal quest for the hidden entrance, the blazed tree, the box canyon, for fabulous wealth glimpsed, lost, and never forgotten.
Are treasures really there? Searchers still seek them. But for the reader, the treasure is here—Dobie's tales are pure gold. paperback

Circle D Western Price: $19.95

 

 

 

 

The Ben Lilly Legend

The Ben Lilly Legend brings back to life a great American hunter—the greatest bear hunter in history after Davy Crockett, by his own account and also by the record. J. Frank Dobie met Lilly and was so struck by this extraordinary man that he collected everything he could find about him.
Lilly was born in Alabama in 1856, followed the bear and the panther westward through Mississippi and Louisiana to Texas, leaving a trail of stories about his prowess as a hunter and his goodness as a man. He was at one time "chief huntsman" to Teddy Roosevelt, hunted in Texas and Mexico, and came to be known as the master sign reader of the Rockies.
Here are all the stories Ben Lilly told and a great many more Frank Dobie heard about him, put together in a fresh and fascinating contribution to American folklore. paperback

Circle D Western Price: $19.95

 

 

 

 

Coronado's Children
Tales of Lost Mines and Buried Treasures of the Southwest

Written in 1930, Coronado's Children was one of J. Frank Dobie's first books, and the one that helped gain him national prominence as a folklorist. In it, he recounts the tales and legends of those hardy souls who searched for buried treasure in the Southwest following in the footsteps of that earlier gold seeker, the Spaniard Coronado.
"These people," Dobie writes in his introduction, "no matter what language they speak, are truly Coronado's inheritors.... l have called them Coronado's children. They follow Spanish trails, buffalo trails, cow trails, they dig where there are no trails; but oftener than they dig or prospect they just sit and tell stories of lost mines, of buried bullion by the jack load... "
This is the tale-spinning Dobie at his best, dealing with subjects as irresistible as ghost stories and haunted houses. paperback

Circle D Western Price: $19.95

 

 

 

 

Cow People

Cow People records the fading memories of a bygone Texas, the reminiscences of the cow people themselves. These are the Texans of the don't-fence-me-in era, their faces pinched by years of squinting into the desert glare, tanned by the sun and coarsened by the dust of the Chisholm Trail. Their stories are often raucous but just as often quiet as hot plains under a pale Texan sky.
A native Texan, J. Frank Dobie had an inborn knowledge of the men and customs of the trail camps. Cattlemen were as various as the country was big. Ab Blocker was a tall, quiet man who belonged totally to the cattle and the silent plains. But big men often had big lungs. "Shanghai Pierce was the loudest man in the country. He would sit at one end of a day coach and in normal voice hold conversation with some man at the other end of the coach, who of course had to yell, while the train was clanking along. He knew everybody, yelled at everybody he saw.
" Texas bred tall men and taller stories. There was Findlay Simpson, who played havoc with fact but whiled away the drivers' long, lonely evenings with his tales. Old Findlay told of a country so wet that it bogged down the shadow of a buzzard, and of cattle that went into hibernation during rugged winters; he once spun yarns for three days straight, outlasting his listeners in a marathon of endurance.
All real cow people—from the cattle drivers to the cattle owners—lived by a simple code based on the individual's integrity. Bothering anyone else's poke or business uninvited was strictly forbidden, and enforcement of this unwritten law was as easy as pulling a trigger. Honesty was taken for granted, and a cowman's name on a check made it negotiable currency.
Yet Texas had its "bad guys"—the crooks, the thieves, even the tightwads. "A world big enough to hold a rattlesnake and a purty woman is big enough for all kinds of people," wrote Dobie. This is the world whose vast and various population the reader will find in Cow People. paperback

Circle D Western Price: $19.95

 

 

 

 

I'll Tell You a Tale
An Anthology

I'll Tell You a Tale is a garland of some of Frank Dobie's best writing, put together by Isabel Gaddis, one of his former students at the University of Texas. The tales included are those the author himself liked best, and he even rewrote some of them especially for this anthology. Ben Carlton Mead has contributed 32 original line drawings to illustrate the stories.
These tales spring from the soil and folklore of our land; but more than this, they make the readers contemporary with the times, filling us with the wonder of something past and yet still with us. They are arranged topically into sections whose titles speak for them: "The Longhorn Breed," "Mustangs and Mustangers," "The Saga of the Saddle," "Characters and Happenings of Long Ago," "Animals of the Wild," "In Realms of Gold," and "Ironies." paperback

Circle D Western Price: $19.95

 

 

 

 

The Longhorns

The Texas Longhorn made more history than any other breed of cattle the world has known. These wiry, intractable beasts were themselves pioneers in a harsh land, moving elementally with drouth, grass, Arctic blizzards, and burning winds. Their story is the bedrock on which the history of the cow country of America is founded.
J. Frank Dobie was a tale spinner who appreciated the proper place of legend and folklore in history. In The Longhorns, he tells of the Spanish conquistadors, who brought their cattle with them; of ranching in the turbulent colonial times; of the cowboy, whose abandon, energy, insolence, and pride epitomized the booming West. He writes of terrifying stampedes, titanic bull fights on the range, ghost steers, and encounters with Indians.
A tireless prospector of the history and legends of the Southwest, Dobie spent most of his life preparing to write this book. He was born in the Texas brush country where the Longhorns made their last stand; he back-trailed them into Mexico; he pursued the vivid lore of Texas cowboys and Mexican vaqueros. No historian or naturalist has ever so related an animal to the land, its people, and its history. paperback

Circle D Western Price: $19.95

 

 

 

 

The Mustangs

J. Frank Dobie, master storyteller of the American Southwest, here tells the tale of the wild and free mustangs that once roamed the western ranges. This is the story, too, of the white men and the Indians, no less wild and free, who captured them, gentled them, rode them, and annihilated them. An American classic, The Mustangs is a thoughtful and carefully crafted book by one of this country's literary greats. "This is a magnificent book, so packed with lore and legend that one is not conscious of the fact that it is history, too. Frank Dobie tells the story of the mustangs . . . the story too of the men, and the way of life the mustang brought into being." --New York Herald Tribune "Mr. Dobie brings together all his findings in a single book of solid scholarship, documented to the hilt, and inspired by his unflagging enthusiasm for the wild free creatures of the West. The Mustangs will probably remain the standard work on the subject." --New York Times "Not alone from stodgy tomes and rare pamphlets of cloistered libraries of a continent, but from widely scattered remudas and firsthand experiences of salty wranglers, have come the color, flavor and vitality to this beautiful book." --Dallas Times Herald
paperback

Circle D Western Price: $19.95

 

 

 

 

Rattlesnakes

Here are observations and speculations, legends and yarns, even gossip about the habits and dispositions of these extraordinary creatures—rattlesnakes—their reported size, deadliness, and power to charm their natural enemies. Here are descriptions of actual fights to the death between rattlesnakes and other animals and accounts of the strange experiences human beings have had with them, as well as tips on where to find them and how to act when you see one.
Dobie began systematically collecting lore about the rattlesnake world many years ago, using some of it in such regional publications as Southwest Review and incorporating much of it into essays—with the intention of eventually putting together a book about rattlesnakes. Now, in this collection of twenty-two articles, his wish is posthumously fulfilled.
Only Frank Dobie could tell of this fascinating and frightening creature with such wisdom and humor, thereby tempering "the age-old feud between the snake and man." And the rattlesnake—who once aroused fear among even the boldest men in the Old West—can at last be regarded with tolerance, respect, and even affection. paperback

Circle D Western Price: $19.95

 

 

 

 

Tales of Old-Time Texas

It is for good reason that J. Frank Dobie is known as the Southwest's master storyteller. With his eye for color and detail, his ear for the rhythm of language and song, and his heart open to the simple truth of folk wisdom and ways, he movingly and unpretentiously spins the tales of our collective heritages. This he does in Tales of Old-Time Texas, a heartwarming array of twenty-eight stories filled with vivid characters, exciting historical episodes, and traditional themes. As Dobie himself says: "Any tale belongs to whoever can best tell it." Here, then, is a collection of the best Texas tales—by the Texan who can best tell them.
Dobie's recollections include such classics in Lone Star State lore as the tale of Jim Bowie's knife, the legend of the Texas bluebonnet, the story of the Wild Woman of the Navidad, and the account of the headless horseman of the mustangs. Other stories in this outstanding collection regale us with odd and interesting characters and events: the stranger of Sabine Pass, the Apache secret of the Guadalupes, the planter who gambled away his bride, and the Robinhooding of Sam Bass. These stories, and many more, make Tales of Old-Time Texas a beloved classic certain to endure for generations. paperback

Circle D Western Price: $19.95

 

 

 

 

A Vaquero of the Brush Country
The Life and Times of John D. Young

This true story of the Texas brush range and the first cowboys, as thrilling as any tale of fiction, has become a classic in Western literature. It is the story of the land where cattle by tens of thousands were killed on the prairie and where the "Skinning War" was fought. It is the story of the Chisholm Trail up to Abilene and the Platte and of establishing a ranch on the free grass of the Texas Panhandle, of roping elk in Colorado, of trailing Billy the Kid in New Mexico, of the grim lands of the Pecos. And it is the story of John Young, old-time vaquero who was trail driver, hog chaser, sheriff, ranger, hunter of Mexican bandits, horse thief killer, prairie fire fighter, ranch manager, and other things—a man who was also something of a dreamer, a man of imagination. paperback

Circle D Western Price: $19.95

 

 

   
   

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