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Subject Terms

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Restrictions on Access

Preferred Citation

Container List


Related Collections, Exhibits, & Links

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Guide to the Neal Torrey Cowboy Poetry Collection

Neal Torrey Cowboy Poetry Collection, circa 2000
1 folder
Location: 0142, Box 1, Folder 14
Accession #: 2002.162

This small collection includes several poems by Neal Torrey, a cowboy poet born in Missouri but raised in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Neal Torrey, cowboy poet, was born in Missouri but grew up in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where he raised AQHA and Appaloosa horses. He now lives in Bolivar, Missouri. Torrey says,

"I grew up reading Will James and Zane Grey, in fact, I think I read all that our small library had of those two. I tried my best to learn how to draw horses like Will James and Charlie Russell. I spent my Saturday afternoons in the movie theatres, watching Hopalong Cassidy, the Durango Kid, Roy Rogers, Gene Autry, Bob Steele, Gary Cooper, Henry Fonda, Red Ryder and all that bunch of good, clean-cut heroes. Later in life, as a Special Deputy Sheriff in Teton County, in Wyoming, I rode patrol on horseback, six-gun strapped to my hip, looking for (believe it or not) cattle rustlers! I had to pinch myself to see that I wasn't dreaming. Our children, and perhaps a good many of our young adults need exposure to the moral code that was held by the real cowboys and ranchers. The later Hollywood image of the anti-hero in the leading role has done a lot of damage to the true story of the West.

As I can, I try with my cowboy poetry to show the cowboy, the rancher, the lawman, the soldier and the Native American in a good, positive light. Sure, there were bad men in the West, but they were definitely a minority, and were quickly eliminated by the decent citizens of the West. There is much to tell of the privations, the harsh weather and primitive conditions under which the men of the old West functioned.

If you study the hymns and the songs of the cowboy, you see that for the most part, he was a man of honor, integrity and faith. That story is one that needs to be told, and I have taken it upon myself to tell it."

Neal Torrey is a member of the Missouri Cowboy Poets Association and the Oklahoma Western Heritage, Inc. He is the author of Sagebrush Sentiments.

The Cowboy Directory

Scope & Content Note  

The Neal Torrey Collection consists of a single series, Poetry, which includes nine original poems written and typed by Torrey.

Subject Terms  

Personal Names:
Torrey, Neal

Subject Headings:

Processing Information  

This collection was accessioned in 2002 and filed along with other small cowboy poetry collections. Archivist Laura Anne Heller created the current finding aid on July 15, 2009.

Ownership & Literary Rights  

The Neal Torrey Cowboy Poetry 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  

Neal Torrey Cowboy Poetry Collection, Box ##, Folder ##, Dickinson Research Center, National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Related Collections, Exhibits, & Links  

Bud Barnett Cowboy Poetry Collection: A small collection of poetry by Bud Barnett, cowboy poet from the Mojave Desert of California and the northeastern Oklahoma.

Blakeley Cowboy Poetry Collection: Collection contains two publicity stills of cowboy poets and singers, Jim "Curly" Musgrave & Richard Olsen.

Barbara Bockelman Cowboy Poetry Collection: Barbara Bockelman is an Oklahoma native of the Slapout community in Laverne. This collection consists of her own cowboy poetry, the unpublished manuscript A Permanent Home, and an assortment of articles.

Scott Hill Bumgardner Cowboy Poetry Collection: Bumgardner is a storyteller and cowboy poet of Texas history, cowboys, and tall tales. This small collection contains one publicity packet of articles and a publicity photograph.

Hank Elling Cowboy Poetry Collection: This collection features two articles by Hank Elling about cowboys and roundups. Hank Elling is a cowboy singer and musician from Lawton, Oklahoma.

Tim Graham Cowboy Poetry Collection: Graham is cowboy musician and singer who was raised on a farm in the Midwest. This small collection contains a publicity packet whick includes several of his original cowboy poems.

Michael Johnson Cowboy Poetry Collection: Johnson is a humorist, author and international motivational speaker, but also a former professional rodeo cowboy, a former university professor, and has worked in upper level management in industry. This small collection includes a publicity packet.

Fletcher Jowers Cowboy Poetry Collection: Jowers is a singer and songwriter of cowboy music and is known for his "Texas Cowboy approach" to music. This collection contains publicity materials.

Katie Lee Cowboy Poetry Collection: Lee is a native a Tucson, Arizona, and is a western folksinger and author. This collection includes publicity materials and photographs.

Metegrano Collection of James Barton Adams Poetry & Ephemera: This collection consists of photocopied pages concerning the life of James Barton Adams and his poetry.

Carl Thurlo Cowboy Poetry Collection: Thurlo hails from Kingston, Oklahoma, a small town close to the Oklahoma-Texas border. He is a cowboy poet and songwriter of The Ranch Hand.

Neal Torrey Cowboy Poetry Collection: This small collection includes several poems by Neal Torrey, a cowboy poet born in Missouri but raised in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Dallas Turner Cowboy Poetry Collection: Known to radio listeners as Nevada Slim, singer, yodeler, and guitarist Dallas Turner is a native of Yakima, Washington. This collection has publicity materials.

Ray J. Vigil Cowboy Poetry Collection: This collection features several poems by Ray Vigil.

Container List  

Series 1: Poetry, circa 2000
Item Title/Description
Poem, “Oh, Bury Me Not” or “The Post-Mortem Meanderings of Elmer McCurdy.” 3 pages. [1]
Poem, “Twisted History.” 3 pages. [1]
Poem, “The Marshal and the Chicken Thieves.” 3 pages. [1]
Poem, “The Newton General Massacre.” 2 pages. [1]
Poem, “Diamondbacks Are Not a Girl’s Best Friend.” 2 pages. [1]
Poem, “The Hoot Owl Killers.” 1 page. [1]
Poem, “The Confession.” 1 page. [1]
Poem, “Thirsty.” 1 page. [1]
Poem, “Old Four-Eyes.” 1 page. [1]

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