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Controversy: Cowboy High Style/Cody High Style

Lawrence Tenney Stevens in Cody environs circa 1930.

New discoveries in the archives of Lawrence Tenney Stevens are rewriting the history of Cowboy High Style/Cody High Style. There are some people who are not happy about it.

Why? Pride and greed. Bob Boze Bell, publisher of True West magazine, was correct when he said on a recent television broadcast that if you are going to tell the truth to locals about the Western legends they created and profit from: “You better make them laugh, otherwise they’ll kill you.”

An outstanding article about the initial Lawrence Tenney Stevens / Cowboy High Style  controversy was written by Elizabeth Clair Flood and published in the January 2002 issue of Cowboys & Indians magazine. It is titled Western Design Conference: The Enduring Legacy Of A Pioneer Artist Challenges The Old Guard At This Prestigious Annual Gathering. This article is a must-read for anyone with a serious interest in Western art, Western furnishings, Western scholarship, and  historical integrity in general.

In the years since Flood’s article was written, there have been some shameful attempts, by people who should know better, to stifle scholarly discussion of the facts. I will be revealing the details in an upcoming book and documentary. Until then, if you teach history, your students will definitely want to hear these details. ┬áContact me, John Faubion, at johnfaubion@basicisp.net.