Saturday, September 10, 2016
Donald Lee - Fort Worth Drover
While strolling through the stockyards in Fort Worth, I ran into drover Donald Lee. Dressed in vintage looking western outfits, he helps twice daily (11:30am and 4pm) to drive a herd of longhorn cattle through East Exchange Avenue. Easy job, somebody may perceive quite quickly, well not that fast.
Besides riding out there in everything from ice and snow to 110 (43C) degree weather, there is also the upkeep (like shoveling manure) of the horse, the stable, the cattle herd and the pens. And if this is not enough, like all the other drovers, they are also ambassadors, spreading goodwill about the old traditions, the history of the cattle drives and why they disappeared as well as educating kids about the daily life and chores, like branding.
The big cattle drives are long gone, their heyday being between 1860 - 1890. The only cattle being auctioned off these days is by satellite video conference. So go out, visit the Stockyards in Fort Worth and learn something from the past. For more information visit the Visitor Center online or in person.
He also rides in his spare time, below you can see him and Molly, a paint.
Sources: Branding Picture & Video courtesy of Donald Lee, http://www.fortworthstockyards.org/, Fortworth.com
This shot and other photography of mine are available through Dispatch Press Images for publication.