« Return to this article

Know the West

A new look at old pictures

  Historical photographs of ranch life tend to be so full of men that an observer might think no women ever lived on the range. But in 1898, Mabel Souther did more than just live on the Big Red Ranch in northeastern Wyoming - she took pictures that documented the working life there. Perhaps her cowpoke subjects bristled when the ranch manager's wife made them stand still for a photograph. But she earned their respect every time she photographed, hauling her camera, tripod and a suitcase full of accessories across the Wyoming landscape. One of the cowboys from Big Red collected many of her photographs, which are on view at the ranch through Dec. 4 in a show called One Hundred Years Ago: Big Red Ranch and the Photographs of Mabel Graham McIntosh Souther.

Big Red Ranch, now owned by the Ucross Foundation, is one-half mile east of the junction of U.S. Highways 14 and 16 in Ucross, Wyo. For more information, call 307/737-2291.

*Gabriel Ross