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Introduction

Scope & Content Note

Subject Terms

Processing Information

Copyright

Restrictions on Access

Preferred Citation

Container List

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Guide to the Verne Elliott Collection

Verne Elliott, Midnight, and Ed McCartyVerne Elliott Collection,
1 folder
Location: 0164; 685
Accession #: R.271

Introduction
The Verne Elliott Collection presents a photo album containing photographs of rodeo performers, possibly featuring McCarty-Elliott Company livestock.

Biography
Verne Elliott was born on the family’s homestead ranch in Platteville, Colorado, on July 4, 1890. Elliott’s grandfather left Kentucky in 1852 on his way to California but ended up settling down and building his homestead in Colorado. Elliott’s father, Jackson, was a cattleman, cowboy, and at one time sheriff of Weld County. Verne went to grade school in Greeley and Manual High School in Denver, but at 16 decided to withdraw from school and pursue the cowboy and rodeo business. His father didn’t argue, but said “he had better be good at it.”

Elliott roped and rode in the roughstock events in rodeo arenas before he became a contractor. His first rodeo was the 1907 Cheyenne Frontier Days in Wyoming. He was forced to retire from participating in rodeo events due to an injury in 1910.

He still wanted to be involved in rodeo events and culture, so he turned to the livestock contracting business. Elliott partnered with Ed McCarty of Chugwater, Wyoming, just after World War I in 1918, and they produced the first indoor rodeo in Texas, in 1917. Elliott built bucking chutes at this Fort Worth rodeo, when previously broncs were either snubbed or held in the arena until the rider climbed aboard.

The famous saddle broncs Midnight and Five Minutes to Midnight were owned by the McCarty-Elliott Company, and both broncs are interred on the Plaza Gardens at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. In an open letter printed in Rodeo Sports News, Casey Tibbs remembers “I know that Midnight and Five Minutes to Midnight were great horses and you loved them so much that you nearly choked up every time you talked about them.”

The McCarty-Elliott Company also produced the first Denver National Western Rodeo in 1931, a contract maintained by Elliott even after McCarty died in 1946. Elliott also produced the Cheyenne Frontier Days, the Pendleton Round-Up, and the Calgary Stampede in Alberta, Canada. The company took a rodeo to New York in 1922 and to London in 1924 and 1934.

In 1936, Elliott was initiated into the Navajo Indian Tribe of Arizona with the name “Acalthe Binantai” which translates in English “Mr. Head Cowboy.”

In 1954 the Rodeo Cowboys’ Association presented Elliott with a plaque at the Denver National Western Rodeo, “In recognition of his many years if producing fine rodeos, his success over the years in helping to raise the standard of Rodeo as an American competitive sport, and his generosity in helping the cowboys.”

In 1962, Verne Elliott at the age of 71 died from a heart attack while working in the pasture of his St. Vrain Ranch near the same town he was born, Platteville, Colorado. The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum inducted Verne Elliott into the Rodeo Hall of Fame in 1973, for being a rodeo producer and livestock contractor.

Sources:
“Verne Elliott, Stock Contractor.” ProRodeo Sports News, April 18, 1990. No. 7.

“Verne Elliott Given Hall of Fame Honors.” Rodeo Sports News, January 1973. Vol. 21, No. 4.

Tibbs, Casey. “The Quantity and Quality of Today’s Bucking Horses Good As Those of ‘Old Days.’” Rodeo Sports News, 1957. Vol. 5, No. 13.

See Also: Verne Elliott file in Rodeo Honorees Vertical Files. The file includes correspondence, articles, and photocopied pictures.

Scope & Content Note  

This collection contains 85 photographs, of which 84 are glued into a photo album. The photographs represent various rodeo events. Some of the rodeo personalities represented include: Verne Elliott, Ward Watkins, Mel Stonehouse, Henry Knight, Pete Knight, Norman Cowan, Turk Greenough, and Ray Bell. Some of the photographs are of famous rodeo horses including Midnight and 5 Minutes to Midnight. The one loose photograph of a man on ground after riding a bronc (R.271.07) is in an oversized folder in location 0164. The photo album is stored in an oversized box and located in the oversized shelving area at 0685. Some pages in the photo album have been removed prior its acquisition by the Museum.

Subject Terms  

Personal names:
Bell, Ray
Cowan, Norman
Elliott, Verne
Greenough, Turk
Knight, Henry
Knight, Pete
Stonehouse, Mel
Watkins, Ward

Subject headings:
Horses-Rodeo-5 Minutes to Midnight
Horses-Rodeo-Midnight
Photographs
Rodeo

Processing Information  

This collection was accessioned on August 7, 1980. A scope and content note was written by librarian Karen Spilman in March 2003. The updated finding aid was written and posted online by archivist/librarian Laura Anne Heller in November 2009.

Ownership & Literary Rights  

The Verne Elliott Collection is the property of the Donald C. & Elizabeth M. Dickinson Research Center, National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. Literary right, including copyright, belongs to the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, with the exception of copyrighted artwork images and published literary works, which are the property of the respective copyright holders. It is the responsibility of the researcher, and his/her publisher, to obtain publishing permission from individuals pictured, relevant copyright holders, and the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum.

Restrictions on Access  

The collection is open for research. It is advisable for researchers to discuss their proposed research with staff prior to visiting the Center.

Preferred Citation  

Verne Elliott Collection, Box ##, Folder ##, Dickinson Research Center, National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Container List  

Series 1: Verne Elliott Collection: Loose photograph
Box/Folder # Accession # Description
01/08 R.271.7 Man on ground after riding a bucking horse. Photograph on board, b&w, 7 x 5 in.
Series 2: Verne Elliott Collection: Photo Album
Although these images are cataloged in the Image Archive Database, they have not been scanned yet. Album is in location 0685.
Accession # Description
R.271 Oversized photo album bound by string. Pages can be removed. Some pages appear to be missing prior to acquisition. Cover illustration is of a vase of flowers.
R.271.10 Floyd Stillings on Gin Fiz. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 10x8 in.
R.271.11 Ward Watkins. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 10x8 in.
R.271.12 McCarty-Elliott bucking horses. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.13 Soldiers field Chicago. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 5x7 in.
R.271.14 Photographer taking photograph of cowboys herding horses. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.15 Photograph of a herd of cattle in a corral. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.16 Photograph of a group of cowboys and cowgirls in the middle of an arena. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 5x8 in.
R.271.17 Cowboy calf roping. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 4.25x6.25 in.
R.271.18 Herd of horses running past a building. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 4.25x6.25 in.
R.271.19 10 head of cattle. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 4.25x6.25 in.
R.271.20 Cow in a corral. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 4.5x6.75 in.
R.271.21 Cowboy steer riding. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 5x8 in.
R.271.22 Severs on Five Minutes. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.23 Harry Knight on Rickedy Ann. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 9.75x8 in.
R.271.24 Cowboy being thrown while saddle bronc riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 10x8 in.
R.271.25 Cowboy saddle bronc riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 10x8 in.
R.271.26 Norman Cowan. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 10x8 in.
R.271.27 Mel Stonehouse on Sun Down, Cheyenne Frontier. 1930 ca. Holland. Cheyenne, WY. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 7.75x9.75 in.
R.271.28 Turk Greenough on Sun Down. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 7.75x9.75 in.
R.271.29 Cowan on Whisser White. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 7.75x9.75 in
R.271.30 Cowboy being thrown by a saddle bronc. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 7.75x9.75 in.
R.271.31 Dolph [sic] Aber on V8. (Doff Aber) 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.32 Don Nesbit [sic] on Twenty-Below. (Don Nesbitt) 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 10x8 in.
R.271.33 Cowboy saddle bronc riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 10x8 in.
R.271.34 Cowboy being thrown by a saddle bronc. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.35 Cowboy saddle bronc riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.36 Cliff Helm. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 9.75x7.75 in.
R.271.37 Cowboy being thrown over the head of a saddle bronc. 1920 ca. Ralph R. Doubleday. Photograph is glued into a photo album, photograph has been touched up. Photograph, b&w, 7x9.75 in.
R.271.38 Mike Stewart on Wine Glass. 1920 ca. Nick Saghalien. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 7.75x9.75 in
R.271.39 Cowboy saddle bronc riding. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.40 Cowboy saddle bronc riding. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.41 Cheyenne Frontier. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 10x8 in.
R.271.42 Cowboy saddle bronc riding. 1930 ca. Rocky Mountain Photo Co. Denver, CO. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 9.75x7.75 in.
R.271.43 Cowboy saddle bronc riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.44 John Shipp on Yellow Stone Trail. 1930 ca. Rocky Mountain Photo Co. Denver, CO. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.45 Cowboy saddle bronc riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album, photograph is a composite. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.46 Turk Greenough. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 9.75x7.75 in.
R.271.47 Cowboy being thrown by a saddle bronc. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 7.75x10 in.
R.271.48 Cowboy being thrown by a saddle bronc. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 7.75x9.5 in.
R.271.49 Cowboy being thrown by a saddle bronc. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x9.75 in.
R.271.50 Cowboy being thrown by a saddle bronc. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 7.75x10 in.
R.271.51 Cowboy saddle bronc riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 5x8 in.
R.271.52 Cowboy saddle bronc riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 5.5x4.75 in.
R.271.53 Hub Whitman [sic] on 20 below. (Hub Whiteman) 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 5x8 in.
R.271.54 Cowboy bareback riding. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 5x8 in.
R.271.55 Midnight & Ed. (Ed McCarty) 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 6.5x9 in.
R.271.56 Cowboy saddle bronc riding. 1920 ca. Photograph was glued into a photo album, now rests loose in the in photo album at its original placement. Photograph, b&w, 6.5x9 in.
R.271.57 Midnight & Helen McCarty. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in
R.271.58 Midnight & Pete Knight. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 9.75x7.75 in.
R.271.59 Horses in a corral. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 4.75x6.75 in.
R.271.60 Bud Voughn on Midnight. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 5x8 in.
R.271.61 Man holding lead of a horse. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 4.75x7 in.
R.271.62 Verne, Proser Martin, Midnight & Jack Dempey [sic] (Demsey). 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 10x12 in.
R.271.63 Cowboy being thrown from steer. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 9.75x7.75 in.
R.271.64 Cowboy being thrown from steer. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 5x8 in.
R.271.65 Cowboy on ground after being thrown by steer. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.66 Cowboy steer riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.67 Cowboy steer riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 10x8 in.
R.271.68 Cowboy steer riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.69 Cowboy being thrown while steer riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.70 Jonney Snyder riding a mean twister. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.71 Cowboy on ground after being thrown by steer. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 7.75x9.75 in.
R.271.72 Homer. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.73 Slatts Jacob hitting the high boots on a Brama. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.74 Cowboy being thrown while steer riding. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 9.75x7.75 in.
R.271.75 Cowboy being thrown while steer riding. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 9.75x7.75 in.
R.271.76 Brahma steer riding Cheyenne Frontier Days. 1920 ca. Denver, CO. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.77 Brahma bull pulling a chariot. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.78 Steer attacking a chariot. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.79 Rodeo clown holding onto a steer’s tail. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.80 Cowboy steer wrestling. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.81 Cowboy steer wrestling. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.82 Shorty Ricker necking a wild one. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.83 Cowboy steer wrestling. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.84 Cowboy missing his steer while steer wrestling. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.85 Betty Meyers trick riding. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.86 Ray Bell in steer roping contest. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.87 Cowboy calf roping. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.88 Cowboy calf roping. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.89 Cowboy calf roping. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.90 Cowboys trying to saddle wild horses. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.
R.271.91 4 men, 1 on horseback and 2 horses posing for a photograph. 1920 ca. Denver, CO. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 7.75x9.75 in.
R.271.92 Ed Verne. (Verne Elliott and Ed McCarty) 1920 ca. Rocky Mountain Photo Co. Denver, CO. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 5x7 in.
R.271.93 Verne Elliott posing with 6 men. 1920 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 4.75x7 in.
R.271.94 Verne Elliott on his wonderful horse Tony. 1930 ca. Photograph is glued into a photo album. Photograph, b&w, 8x10 in.

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