As transcribed by Capps from the original wood pulp and faded sepia ink, this is the autobiographical Old West memoir of Charley Blankenship who ran away from Ma and Pa and their Missouri farm at the age of 17 to become a cowboy on the Great Plains. Written in 1909, the recollections cover ten years (1880-90) of riding and roping the dogies from Powder River, Wyoming, to the Tonto Basin in Arizona and a long dusty trail boobytrapped with booze, poker, Weeping Lil and other ladies of easy virtue and even some ornery stagecoach robbers named Bo and Elmo and Sam and Carolina who want to impress poor Charley, naive and ""green as a gourd,"" into their evil society. Loping along on his gelding Chili, Charley (he calls himself ""Duke"" Cause it sounds tougher) avoids most of these snares and becomes a right good cowpoke, buffalo skinner, and jack-of-all-trades frontiersman with a sharp eye and ear for the foibles, lovable and otherwise, of his fellow critters, human or equine. Those with a yen for the Blue Palace saloon in old-timey Dodge City will soak up the atmosphere, the ""son-of-a-bitch stew,"" and the gunsmoke of long ago. Urban types however may get slightly saddle sore.