Tales from the Morgue: Even the British are enthusiastic about the rodeo

2010-02-27T09:00:00Z 2014-02-14T13:00:26Z Tales from the Morgue: Even the British are enthusiastic about the rodeoJohanna Eubank, Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
February 27, 2010 9:00 am  • 

 

I can't say it any better, so I'll present this article that ran in the Arizona Daily Star Feb. 22, 1925:

 

RODEO, APPEALING TO EVERY CLASS OF PEOPLE, INSPIRED EVEN THE BRITISH TO ENTHUSIASM

London Press Unanimous in Praise of Exhibition of Manly and Womanly Sportsmanship and Courage That Shook Wembley Exhibition

By Thomas D. Ranson

It may seem superfluous to analyze the appeal of rodeo shows with the American public. The pity is that people in eastern cities are not given more opportunity to see really worthwhile rodeos. A sold out grandstand would invariably greet these exhibitions of daring, skill and horsemanship, which appeal so deeply to the American public, and, which are free from the element of needless cruelty which usually repels the Anglo-Saxon who witnesses a bull fight.

The tremendous hit made by Tex Austin's rodeo show at Wembley, England, last year, illustrates the popular appeal of this form of entertainment, and the desirability that the rodeo shall become a national American pastime as disinguished from a form of show to be seen only in the west.

The Wembley show was the most stupendous and ambitious Empire exhibition ever staged on the soil of Great Britain. It contained huge exhibits from every part of the world, with shows and exhibitions of all kinds illustrating amusements and customs of peoples from the far corners of the Earth.

And then Tex Austin's rodeo came along and ran away with the whole show.

The writer had an opportunity to see the principal English newspapers and illustrated magazines, and discussion of the rodeo and illustrations of the rodeo occupied more than half the space devoted to the Wembley exhibition.

It is not easy to move a stolid race like the British to lyric enthusiasm, but the following are examples of press comment, which illustrates the impression of American skill and daring called forth by the rodeo exhibition:

The London Times: "It is funny to hear middle aged, theatre going England, hum and haw about the alleged brutality of steer roping. We sometimes feel fat and over-civilized in the presence of these mighty men of the plains, with skins of leather and muscels (sic) of steel. They are true examples of the pioneers who could conquer a continent."

The London Graphic: "The writer is not easily thrilled, but he was thrilled yesterday. Imagine a man, going at full gallop, crawling under his horse's belly and emerging safe in the saddle on the other side without checking the animal's speed."

The London Sphere: "We confess the women riders stirred us to greatest enthusiasm. The sight of these gallant cowgirls standing up in the saddles and performing breath taking stunts while their horse galloped at full speed drew cheer after cheer from the thousands of massed spectators. These are the finest and most inspiring representatives the Americans ever sent England."

And so ad infinitum. There are enthusiasts in various branches of sport, but a good rodeo exhibition appeals to every class and age, and provides thrills for the most sophisticated.

 

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About this blog

"Tales from the Morgue" is a way for the Star to share stories from the treasure trove of information held in its old files.

Johanna Eubank, aka the Morgue Lady, was a research assistant in the Star Library — also known as News and Research Services — for 18 years before becoming an online content producer. She has had her share of sneezing fits after digging into dusty old files, so she's sure to find a few old stories to re-examine.

If you have suggestions, comments or questions about this blog, e-mail jeubank@tucson.com

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