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Rosenberg’s Black Cowboy Museum celebrates African Americans’ contributions to the West

The Charlotte Observer logo The Charlotte Observer 6/20/2022 DETOUR Staff, The Charlotte Observer

Just outside of Houston, Texas sits an iconic tribute to a widely forgotten part of American history at Rosenberg’s Black Cowboy Museum. African American horse culture in Texas is so much deeper than just Houston rapper Megan thee Stallion’s name, but the reality remains that the contribution of Black cowboys to American history is still widely under-recognized.

In the mid-1800s, around the time of the Civil War, one in four cowboys in the American West was African American. The work was arduous, but it also created pathways to freedom by equipping freed people with in-demand skills as they entered the workforce.

Today, Black rodeos and saddle clubs aim to revive this vibrant history. Museum founder Larry Callies can often be found at such events teaching roping techniques or telling stories. His campfire conversation events are a highlight of the museum’s programming.

This story was created by Detour, a journalism brand focused on the best stories in Black travel, in partnership with McClatchy's The Charlotte Observer and Miami Herald. Detour's approach to travel and storytelling seeks to tell previously under-reported or ignored narratives by shifting away from the customary routes framed in Eurocentrism. The detour team is made up of an A-list of award-winning journalists, writers, historians, photographers, illustrators and filmmakers.

©2022 The Charlotte Observer. Visit charlotteobserver.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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