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Fri Sep 21, 2018, 11:51 AM

Black cowboys: Creole trail rides showcase unique culture

In Texas and Louisiana, a potent mix of zydeco, hip-hop and horses keeps an often overlooked tradition alive
by Joel Balsam in Calvert, Texas, with pictures by Stephanie Foden

Fri 21 Sep 2018 06.00 EDT

Pickup trucks started pouring into the tiny town of Calvert, smack in the middle of Texas’s four metropoles. Some pulled wagons with horses peeking out of the metal bars. Others dragged flatbed trolleys stacked with speakers, a barbecue and a portable toilet.

Inside the vehicles, urbanites from Dallas and Houston slipped off their baseball caps and threw on their cowboy hats, swapping their shoes or flip-flops for cowboy boots.

The occasion was a Creole trail ride, a country party that features a procession, zydeco music, dancing and feasting that runs every weekend through spring and fall in Louisiana and east Texas. Trail rides date back decades, but if you’ve never heard of one before, you aren’t entirely at fault – there are centuries of revisionist history to blame for that.

Who do you think of when you think of a cowboy? A gun-slinging John Wayne type? Some historians believe that well before Hollywood distorted our view of what a cowboy looks like, French-speaking slaves from Africa – later clumped in with the cultural mishmash known as Creoles – rode horses in Louisiana.


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Reply Black cowboys: Creole trail rides showcase unique culture (Original post)
Judi Lynn Sep 2018 OP
nycbos Sep 2018 #1

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Fri Sep 21, 2018, 11:56 AM

1. When I hear the phrase "black cowboy I think of Bart from Blazing Saddles.

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