The Day The Cowboy's Quit Essay

710 Words3 Pages
The Day the Cowboy’s Quit takes place during the 1880’s and revolves around the character, Hugh Hitchcock. “Hitch” can only be described as a man of his word, perhaps even to a fault. He enjoys simple pleasures, and idealizes the cowboy lifestyle. Hitch works for the W Ranch, for a rancher named Charlie Waide, to whom he looks up to as a sort of father-figure. At Charlie’s ranch, Hitch and the other cowboys are free to own their own cattle and brand them as such, so long as they don’t steal from him or any of the other ranchers. However, not all ranchers see fit the hands-off approach Charlie takes with his men. Since the W Ranch is only expanding its horizons, the cowboys, and Hitch, although optimistic, and faithful in Charlie, see this free way of life coming to an end. Soon enough, big ranch owners try to force their ways upon the W Ranch, and Charlie resists, that is, until one of his own is found to have stolen cattle. Charlie’s trust in his men falters, and he conforms to the business oriented ways of the other ranchers. Upon word of this, the…show more content…
The contrast between Hitch and Rascal was enjoyable. I would have liked to see more of a variety of characters, more women, or people from different backgrounds, but I suppose there’s only so much you can hope for from a book published in the early 70’s. I think it showed a more realistic picture of the American cowboy than Hollywood has lead a lot of us to believe. Hitch was different from the get-go, since he doesn’t seem to want to pick fights, or resort to violence the way a lot of movies depict cowboys from the same time period. He values honesty and life, and his relationships, and it’s somewhat humbling to watch play out. The Day the Cowboys Quit isn’t something I would pick up to read personally, but it has changed my perspective on cowboys, and given me more insight into how workers during the industrial era might have

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