How did the Wyoming horse Steamboat get his name?

Claudia Jordan

Dallas, Texas

Steamboat was born in Wyoming in 1896. As a three year old, he was gelded and branded. During the fight to get him down, he slammed his head on the ground and broke some cartilage in his nose. Afterwards, his breathing sounded like a weird, wheezing whistle.  One of the cowhands said, “He sounds like a steamboat,” and the name stuck.

He went on to become the world’s undisputed champion bucking horse for about 15 years. His drawing power was such that it’s been estimated to have been worth more than $500,000—a huge amount of money back then.

To learn more, pick up a copy of the May 2005 True West and read Candy Moulton’s feature “Rodeo Flight School.”

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