In the 1820s, Americans appeared on hacienda in Texas, where they adopted the techniques of working with cattle from vaquero (Spanish vaquero shepherd). From Texas and other parts of the Midwest, cowboys drove cattle to the eastern states.
The number of cowboys increased after the Civil War, when a cattle breeding boom began in the western territories. This business in the second half of the 19th century brought high profits. Armed cowboys grazed cattle on vast expanses of the North American prairies, driving herds over long distances on horseback. The cowboy’s duties were guarding the herd, branding cattle, castrating bulls, trimming horns, selecting cattle for slaughter in the spring and driving it for many days to the railroad (drive). The work of a cowboy was considered low-paid, he received 25-40 dollars a month. Most cowboys were originally from Texas and the southern states: two-thirds were white, the rest were Mexicans and partly blacks. Due to the flourishing of animal husbandry, the Midwest in the 19th century was called the Cattle Kingdom.
As the borders of cultivated agricultural land moved westward, unencumbered pastures turned into farms. By 1890, when all the pastures were fenced with barbed wire, and an extensive network of railway lines went directly to the places of cattle breeding, the need for long-distance cattle drives for long distances disappeared and the cowboys settled on the ranch.
To some extent, cowboy’s clothing serves as a national costume. It includes – a checkered cowboy shirt, a neckerchief, leather or suede covers for trousers – chaparejos or chapaps (chaparejos, chaps), a hat with curved brim, cowboy boots. Cowboy hats and boots are popular in the Midwest and 20-21 centuries, especially in Texas, which is the subject of ridicule of the US intellectual elite.
The romantic image of a noble and fearless cowboy in the Wild West is embodied in American folklore, literature and cinema.
Cowboys were also called loyalist guerrillas during the War of Independence, who ambushed the patriots by luring them with cow bells. In colloquial speech, Americans call cowboys of inexperienced truck drivers, unskilled workers, in the jargon of American politicians this is a rebel who refuses to obey party discipline.