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Texas Brave and Strong

Podcast Transcripts

Part Two of Bush Craft

In Part Two of the Bush Craft interview, Laurie and bushcrafter Harley Retherferd talk more about the outdoor survival skills needed by early travelers to the West.
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Part of of Bush Craft

In Part One of Bush Craft, Laurie interviews Harley Retherford, a young bushcrafter from the beautiful Ozark Mountains in northeastern Oklahoma (Cherokee Nation Territory). They discuss the key outdoor survival
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Buy an adventure for a dime!

Pulp fiction of the American Wild West from—of all places—Germany!? In the 1870s, you could spend a dime and revel in the western adventures of Buffalo Bill, Kit Carson, or
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Death’s Cattle Round-up 

1886: The year the cattle froze. . . Cattlemen in the Texas panhandle faced a big problem in the early 1880s. While the lack of fences on the open range
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The Legend of the Texas Bluebonnet

You’ve seen them. If you haven’t, you’re in for a treat. Bluebonnets line the highways and byways in Texas in late March to mid-April, their blooms turning fields and the
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After the Alamo Fell 

A Mexican’s eyewitness account of the hours after the storming of the Alamo…  You probably know the often told story of the Battle of the Alamo which began in earnest
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Take the challenge: Could YOU gain admission and graduate from Texas’ first college?

Higher education came to The Republic of Texas in 1840 with the Republic’s Congress officially approving the charter of Rutersville College in the new town of Rutersville, located six miles
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San Antonio’s Menger Hotel: Historic and Haunted

History lives at San Antonio’s famous Menger Hotel, and if you can believe the legends, so do numerous ghosts.  Bearing the title of the oldest continuously-operating hotel west of the
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Longhorn Cattle: The Living Symbol of the Old West

The man and the little girl leaned against the corral fence looking in at the cattle.  “Are these the ones we want to buy?” the child asked. “I like their
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A Bowl of Texas Red

What five letter word stands for Texas just like an oil man in a stetson hat or a rodeo cowgirl? C-H-I-L-I . . .Chili. Yep, when you find a steaming
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Why this podcast?

Texas!  The very word conjures up images of rugged cowpunchers, Texas Rangers, Oil wells, and women dressed by Neiman Marcus. It’s a big, diverse  state, the distance from Texarkana on the states NE corner to Chicago, Illinois is smaller than the distance from Texarkana to El Paso on the state’s Western edge. Which reminds me of a true story.  A Dallas city slicker was bragging he’d just bought a 500 acre ranch outside of town. His lady friend from West Texas wasn’t impressed. She raised an eyebrow and drawled, “Honey, in West Texas, if it’s not at least 3000 acres, it’s not a ranch. Whoa! A Texas-sized put down.

We Texans do like to brag and probably find too many ways to do it.  The positive side of that is Texas pride.  We’re quick to share the state’s unique history from the arrival of Spanish explorer Cabeza de Vaca in the fifteen hundreds to the Texas Revolution when Texicans won their independence from Mexico at the battle of San Jacinto—following a bloody defeat at the Alamo and a massacre at Goliad.  Fueled by cries of “Remember the Alamo,” the deciding battle with Mexican General Santa Ana’s army lasted a mere eighteen minutes. Freed from Mexico, Texas became an independent Republic. The only state to ever be its own country.  After ten years as a Republic, Texas joined the United States—as the 28th state—with a formal transfer of government in 1846

This is all reason to be proud, I suppose.  But the real pride which Texans have is in the brave men and strong women who overcame amazing challenges to settle Texas and the diverse  population which lives in the state today and continues to reflect the state’s brave and strong heritage and gives Texans new things to brag about.

So if those of us who are native Texans or adopted Texans talk about our state, just smile and nod and understand that Texas pride is pride in our families who endured hardship to get here, busted the blackland sod with twenty mules, cleared the cross timbers forest to built log cabins, or carved dug-out homes in the West Texas canyons, educated children and themselves by lantern light, planted and picked cotton, (lots of cotton), drove thousands of head of longhorn cattle up the trails to market, suffered terribly through the dust bowl—when you had to bring your animals and your children(!) in if you saw the dust cloud coming or they’d suffocate in the dust cloud, earned medals in the wars, helped create jazz, fled other countries to live free.  Texas is a microcosm of the best of the West.

As the words of the state song say, “God bless you Texas and keep you brave and strong, that you might grow in power and worth throughout the ages long.”

Texas! Founded by and still populated with brave men and strong women. Or is it brave women and strong men.  Actually it’s all of the above.

That’s why this combination blog and podcast is named “Texas, Brave and Strong.”

If you’re a native Texan, an adopted Texan, or are just interested in all things Texan, subscribe.  You’ll learn things about Texas history that will surprise you and amaze your Texas friends. Chances are, they’ll tip their cowboy hats to you!  

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