STOCK GROWERS ASSOCIATION
113 EAST 20TH STREET - P. 0. BOX 206
CHEYENNE, WYOMING 82003
29 March, 1991
Big Piney, Wyoming 83113
I have watched your "brand" project with interest and considerable tugging at the heart; it is easy to see that once again, you have done a tremendous job! I'm sorry it has taken so long to get back to you.
Though I live a long way from "home," my childhood memories of branding go back to the pole corrals on North Piney, where I took the first of many stiff hind legs to the chin. Grandpa wasted no time getting me down in the dirt, and Joe Budd helped to correct my technique. I'm still not sure if they were helping me or the calves, but I've sure wrestled a lot of them since then.
You may be interested to know that people brand all different ways
in the state. Some places, there is quite a hierarchy of who does
what job - especially roping and branding - other places, there is a certain
satisfaction in letting the "dudes" do the roping. In some areas,
people have almost completely abandoned the method of roping and wrestling
calves and brand on a "table." In the southeastern corner of the
state, everything is roped by the heels, and in the west, it is more often
"catch as catch can."
One of my most vivid memories is one of my grandpa's last times in
the branding corral. As you know, he had emphysema, and his energy
level wasn't great as he got older, but one fine day in June up at the
Mills Place, Joe, Gary, the Tanner boys and several others talked him into
roping. My God! You couldn't get him off the horse. He
spent the next three days sucking for air, but his eyes sparkled and danced
and he talked about that day for years. I am so pleased he got a
chance to show off a little bit.
Lynn and I have the old family brand now, a Quarter Circle 2 Quarter
Circle on the left hip of cattle and the left shoulder of horses.
The brand was first registered in 1916 by my great-great grandfather, Henry
L. Budd. In 1956, the year I was born, the brand went to my grandfather,
William H. Budd Sr. and in 1976 it was transferred to he and Grandma Thelma.
In 1989, the year our son Joe was born, Grandma transferred the brand to
Lynn and 1. The importance and significance of brands cannot be overstated.
When our little boy was born, his Godparents presented him with an "RW"
brand from Carbon County. In the West, it is a property right as
important as water rights. Many brands are born of convenience;
others signify the owner's initials. I do not know the significance
of the Quarter Circle Two Quarter Circle, but my aunt, Pearl Spencer, might.
A tremendous resource person for you to get in touch with is Red
Garretson, Chief Brand Inspector for Wyoming. Red has been with the
Stock Growers for nearly thirty years, and has nearly every brand book
ever published. He still inspects a full load of more than 20,000
head per year, and is in charge of all inspection in the state. Holly
Green, Ross Calvert, Bob Beard and Louie Wardell are all good inspectors
and good people to talk with. Holly is one of the few ladies in the
country who are fulltime inspectors. I know Red would enjoy visiting
with you, and he could put together a good program if you ever need one.
Finally, in 1962, the Stock Growers republished the original brand book printed in 1882, and I have enclosed a copy of that replica. These are hard as heck to find, and it is my only copy, but I would like the museum to have one for people to use. If you are interested in other books, give either Red or myself a call, and we will try to track them down for you.
Again, congratulations on a great project. I look forward to seeing more when I'm up there. Please give my best to Ann Noble and the rest of youth committee, and best wishes.
Robert W. Budd, Executive Director