Early Sublette County Brands Project
Charlie Budd Ranch
 Dan H. Budd, son of Charlie Budd, interviewed by Bette Thompson
May 31, 1990
Dan:  They had the small grades up there until they built that new school house.  You know and they had their school there and their dance hall, where they have the Game and Fish and they had the bank and that's where we pretty nearly killed Jim.  Woodmen had a lodge up there and they had a big log about that big around with a rope tied on it and we took that outside and tied it to the building and to a post out there.  And he was riding it and he got underneath and the danged thing broke loose and it came down and hit him on the head and damn near killed him.
Bette:  It's a wonder it didn't.  Oh, between that and the bear.  We've heard lots of stories about the bear.  How about Skinny?  Did he go to school with you or did he come up afterwards?
Dan:  No, I didn't go to school with Skinny until they built that new schoolhouse over there.  I think he came up about the time they built that.
Bette:  Now, were his mother and father here or did he come...
Dan:  He was Mrs. Larsen's son.
Bette:  Then that's how Bob Gunter came into this country, too, because he was her brother and he came up here to work.
Dan:  They came up from Kemmerer after Larsen got to be cashier.  MacGlashan was the first cashier when they had it in that old dance hall. We used to get out there and throw rocks at that vault and old MacGlashan would come out and he would chase us all over town.  Royal Young had his newspaper downstairs, and we Marbleton kids would get some sand and sprinkle it down through the cracks in the floor.  That was a madhouse.
Bette:  How many of you were there, Dan?
Dan:  Oh, I don't know.  There was a dozen of us from Marbleton, I guess.  I don't know all of the kids from Big Piney, I guess--the ones that were in those grades.  Mrs. Martha Jensen was their teacher.
Bette:  That would be Jimmy Jensen's first wife.  How long did she teach, do you remember?
Dan:  Well, I went to school to her for one year.
Bette: I've heard Mother say that she (Mrs. Jensen) taught Auntie Mildred because Mrs. Jensen was living at the Circle.  She and another teacher were living at the Circle.  Auntie Mildred was too young to go to school so they taught her and then went downtown and taught downtown.  So they did double duty, really.  But it was interesting to find out.  I guess she was just too little to ride a horse or go in a buggy in the winter so they just taught her at home.
Dan:  Yeah, Jim always came down on horseback.
Bette:  Yes, and when she got big enough to ride, he would put her up driving the team and he would get in where it was warm.
Dan:  He come down there and some of us kids had sleds and he'd put a rope on the sled and then on his horse.  He would take us all around for wild rides.
Bette:  I entertain my children a lot with Grandpa's exploits.  They are quite impressed.  Well, I guess he was pretty busy.  He keeps telling me that Auntie Mildred had a protector in Uncle Rass.  At one time Daddy was teasing her and chasing her all around the house and Uncle Rass stepped out from behind the stairs to grab her and protect her.  And Daddy let something fly, and hit him right in the eye.  Oh, dear, he said he had to run fast.  Poor Auntie Mildred, how she ever survived, I don't know.
Dan:  Jim was just a little guy and Max and I and Dorothea went back to Iowa with them on the same train one time.  That was quite an experience.  They took three baskets of food--and those old coaches with stoves in them, you know.
Bette:  That was the experience Grandmother had and she never would travel with him after that.  She was supposed to go on to Denmark and she thought that was the end of the line when they got to Omaha.  She would never go on to Denmark.
Dan:  Jim was just big enough to travel good, you know.  Run up and down the aisles.  Max and I thought we were way above that.  He used to give us a bad time.
Bette:  Well, I can imagine that.  He was a holy terror.  Now, we are talking about when Big Piney was established and it started in what?  About 1912?  13?
Dan:  I imagine abut 1912.
Bette:  And before that you went to school here, Dan?
Dan:  Yeah, I used to go to these country schools.  At that time they had it over here where our place was.  This is Stanley where the post office was.
Bette:  But according to Frances they moved the schoolhouse according to where the most children were.
Dan:  Well, that same schoolhouse used to be down there at the Syke's place, just across the river.  That's where the Rahns and Daniels and Huddlestons went/.
Bette:  Do you remember the Rahn children?
Dan:  Oh, yes.
Bette:  They were a boy and a girl?
Dan:  Yes.  They went to school over here when I did.
Bette:  They would ride horseback?  They must have been older.
Dan:  Oh, yes.  They and the Daniels children were older.
Bette:  I can't remember how old they were when they left here.  But apparently they were pretty good sized kids.
Dan:  Doris Huddleston used to go over here.
Bette:  Were there other Huddleston children?
Dan:  Oh, yeah.  There were several of them.  I went to school with them down in Piney.
Bette:  How did they get those country kids into Big Piney when they established the school in Big Piney?
Dan:  They still had these country schools then.
Bette:  But if you got old enough you went downtown and stayed with somebody and went to school.
Dan:  I stayed with my grandmother.
Bette:  Weren't you lucky.  That's kind of fun.  She must have been quite a fabulous lady.  She lived to be 103.  And how old was your grandfather, Dan?
Dan:  I think he was only about 75 when he died.  I was only a year old when he died.
Bette:  Did he die in Big Piney?
Dan:  No, he died in Salt Lake.  He had gall stones and they took him down there and operated on him and he never came out of it.
Bette:  That's a shame.  They lost quite a few people through improper anesthesia.  It took quite a while to get that down pat.  And then she lived in that little house across from the old high school for a number of years.  I can remember seeing her sitting there on the porch in the sunshine.  She was about the size of Margie Guio.
Dan:  That was the only original Budd house after they moved it from the 67.
Bette:  Was that the one that was over on the creek at the 67?
Dan:  I don't know whether they moved that house down there or not.
Bette:  How long have you been on this particular ranch?
Dan:  Ever since I was born.
Bette:  What animals are now on this ranch?
Dan:  Just cattle and horses.
Bette:  Did you ever have sheep?
Dan:  Oh, Ada had a few sheep, just twenty-five or thirty head.
Bette:  How did you happen to come to have this ranch?
Dan:  My dad bought it from Charlie Griggs.  After he left the country, he bought it from Charlie's wife.
Bette:  Do you remember the circumstances?  Why Charlie left the country?  He was involved in something that was not quite legal, I assume.
Dan:  He was supposed to have been butchering cattle.
Bette:  Do you know of any other brands that were used other than the one you are using in connection with this ranch?
Dan:  Not that I know of.  As far as I know my dad bought the IXL.
Bette:  When did you start using the Cross E?
Dan:  Oh, from the time I was big enough to walk I always wanted  a brand and I tried to get me two or three.
Bette:  Did you make it up, or was it someone else's?
Dan:  Somebody else thought it up.  I don't know.  We sent in half a dozen, I guess, but somebody else had them.
Bette:  So you finally got this one that wasn't attached.  What source of water do you get for your ranch?
Dan:  Middle Piney.
Bette:  Who are your neighbors?
Dan:  Bob Springman and Pete Thompson, Bob and Bette Thompson.
Bette:  Chrisman's.  You have quite close neighbors.  Did you use to have neighbors that were closer than this?
Dan:  Well, we have always had someone living up here at the Springman place, then Griggs took that place up from his brother Charlie.  There was a store, too.  When I was a small kid there was old pieces of bolts of cold calico.
Bette:  The Indians were around this area?
Dan:  Oh, they used to come through here.  When I was a small kid about twenty-five or thirty came through here one day.
Bette:  It was something they used for a long time and so it was hard for them to stop coming this direction, I imagine.
Dan:  Then there were several years that a couple of old squaws used to come back here every summer.
Bette:  Was one's name Mary?
Dan:  Mary and Judy.  And they camped between here and the Scheidler place.
Bette:  Did they come over from the reservation and take them back again?  Do you have any information that is pertinent to your brand?  Do you use one  or do you use two or more?
Dan:  We use two.
Bette:  You use the IXL and where did it originate?  Did it come with the ranch?
Dan:  I don't know.  As far as I know it was one of the first brands that was in the brand book.
Bette:  And it came from the Griggses?
Dan:  Yeah, they had it.  As far as I know.  I guess Dad got it when he got the ranch.
Bette:  And it came with this ranch.  Where was it put on the animal?
Dan:  On the ribs.  The left ribs.
Bette:  That's the IXL.  How about the Cross E?
Dan:  The left ribs.
Bette:  And do you have specific ear marks that go with each brand?
Dan:  No, we just have the IXL ear mark.  We strip the right ear and straight out.
Bette:  And it doesn't have a wattle or a dewlap?  How long have you had this brand?
Dan:  Well, Dad bought the place in...
Bette:  You have had it a long time, then.  It was registered then when you bought it?
Dan:  Mine wasn't.  I had it registered when I was just a little boy.
Bette:  You'd say probably about eighty years then?
Dan:  I suppose.
Bette:  Do you remember where you got your branding irons?  Did they come with the ranch, or did you have to have them made specially?
Dan:  I used to have them made.  There was a blacksmith downtown.
Bette:  I wondered if they had a blacksmith shop at Marbleton, too.
Dan:  Yes.
Bette:  So you had two blacksmith shops?  That's kind of neat.  Do you think that your brand has been a very good brand?
Dan:  It's easy to read and easy to see.  In fact, it's too damned easy to see.  These forest rangers and people see it too quickly.
Bette:  And it can't be worked over very easily?
Dan:  Not that I know of.
Bette:  Not that you know of.  There are just these two brands associated with this ranch.  When do you usually brand, Dan?
Dan:  Oh, in the spring--May or June.
Bette:  And then again in the fall?
Dan:  Again in the fall.
Bette:  Who helps you brand?
Dan:  Oh, my neighbors.
Bette:  It generally turns out to be a pretty festive occasion, doesn't it?  And you also help your neighbors brand, which is kind of nice.  Can you kind of describe your typical day branding?
Dan:  Maybe Pete can describe the other day better than I could.
Bette:  Well, it's changed over the years, don't you think?
Dan:  Oh, I don't know, we've had good days and bad days.  I don't know, you just take your chance when you pick a day.
Bette:  And if it rains you almost forget it, don't you?
Dan:  Well, sometimes you have to forget it and sometimes you can go ahead.
Bette:  It involves about how many people?
Dan:  Oh, it used to didn't involve so many.  But here lately--Barbara can tell you better than I.
Bette:  I imagine if it's typical it is between twenty-five and thirty-five.  I think more people come than used to, it seems like.  Where do you brand?  Do you have specific corrals?
Dan:  Yeah, we have branding places down here on the hill.
Bette:  Little specific fences where you drive them in a brand.  Do you use gas or do you use fire?
Dan:  We used to use fire all the time but now we use gas.
Bette:  Just wood fires you used to use.  If you had a preference, which would you choose?
Dan:  Well, the gas is a lot better.  You can heat your irons better with gas.
Bette:  It just seems to go faster, doesn't it?  Do you have any stories about a particular branding?
Dan:  No.
Bette:  Maybe when you were a little boy, did something happen that was kind of different?  You did brand with your father when you were young?
Dan:  Ever since I was big enough to go to one, I guess.
Bette:  You helped out.  So, you consider yourself a really experienced brander?
Dan:  Calf wrestler or whatever.
Bette:  You kind of changed as you got older.  What was your favorite job when you were branding?
Dan:  Oh, I graduated from calf wrestling to branding and vaccinating and the last few wherever they needed me.
Bette:  I remember you branded part of the time at our brandings.  Do you have any other stories?
Dan:  Well, that's about all I can think of.
Bette:  We do appreciate it and thank you very much.