B O O T H I L L M U S E U M
Kansas Cowboy Hall of Fame
Bob & Wayne Alexander
The Alexander brothers were both born at the Alexander Ranch, Council Grove Kansas to O.E. "Bud" and Maude Alexander; Bob on September 17, 1920 and Wayne on September 1, 1923. Almost before they could walk, they and younger brother Jim were taught how to sit on a horse. As they grew up, Bob and Wayne helped their father, who was in the grazing business, drive cattle from Kamisky to the Missouri Pacific yards or to the Flint Hills pastures. They grew up in the ranching business, working on horseback often from before sunup to sundown keeping the cattle in line and doctoring them when needed. This work evolved into an interest in ranch rodeo where the brothers made a name for themselves as participants, pickup men and judges. During World War II, Bob served in the National Guard and Wayne in the Army Air Corps. When their father retired after the War, Bob took over his ranch. Wayne and his wife helped run a dairy farm south of Council Grove where they birthed and raised many calves and milked cows. In the early 1950's, Wayne became a steel worker, but helped Bob at the ranch when he wasn't competing in rodeos. Upon retirement in the late 1970's, Wayne returned to the Council Grove area to work with Bob as a roper and he began raising Angus cattle. For decades Wayne's Black Angus beef was very popular in the Council Grove and Topeka area. Bob competed in old timer events and rode horses until well into his 80's. Bob was a charter member of the Council Grover Future Farmers of America Chapter and was active in Morris County 4-H and Fair. Both were members of the American Quarter Horse Association and numerous rodeo associations. Wayne died on Nov. 25, 2014. He had four children, Connie Alexander, Nancy Sharp, Sandy Cameron and Rick Alexander. Bob had been married to his wife, Georgina for 73 years at the time of his induction to the Kansas Cowboy Hall of Fame. On June 1, 2015 Bob passed away leaving four children, Barbara Lerner, Tom Alexander, Vicky Martin and Jeff Alexander. Bob's grandson, Jimmy Lerner and great-grandsons have taken over his custom grazing pastures. There were times throughout their ranching career when Bob Alexander worked with his friend and fellow 2014 Kansas Cowboy Hall of Fame Working Cowboy, Dusty Anderson.
"It's been a lot of fun, truly a great life," Wayne Alexander.
"We were lucky that Dad was a cowboy and gave us the opportunity to follow in his line of work," Bob Alexander.
Fredric R. Young
Fredric R. Young born in 1931 in Dodge City, is a fourth generation Dodge Citian, with his grandfather arriving in the area in 1879. Fred majored in accounting at Kansas University. He was not interested in history until the 1950's when Boot Hill Museum, George Henrichs, raised his curiosity. Henrichs granted him access to Museum records from early Dodge City. In 1965, Fred married Alberta Marie Timm in Kansas City, Missouri. In 1971, Henrichs asked Fred to write an historical book for Dodge City's 1972 Centennial. He hurriedly put together his records and used photographs graciously provided by Boot Hill Museum and the Kansas Historical Society to write Dodge City: Up Through a Century in Story and Pictures. This book still considered the "bible" for Museum employees and those interested in early Dodge City history. He has spent over 50 years researching Dodge City history pouring over court records, deeds, early newspapers and letters from Boot Hill Museum, the Kansas Heritage Center in Dodge City and other sources. In 2009, he completed another book The Delectable Burg: An Irreverent History of Dodge City - 1872 to 1886, which presents early Dodge City from a unique viewpoint. Fredric R. Young refers to himself as an "amateur historian." Fred and Alberta live in Dodge City and have two grown children who live out of the area, Robert Young and Elizabeth Tybinkowski. His only grandchild is Elizabeth's son, Alex.
"The truth about its early days is far more violent, exciting, and 'romantic' than the fiction," from the preface of Young's Dodge City, Up Through a Century in Story and Pictures.
C.L. "Bud" Sankey was born on December 27, 1935 in Delta, Colorado to Doc and Fern Sankey. He spent his youth in Grand Junction, Colorado. Breaking and training horses from an early age, he always had a talent for selecting great horses. In the 1960's, a Kansas horseman recognized Bud's talent and hired him to train horses. After moving his young family to Kansas, he soon began training his own horses. On his way to owning his own arena and barn in Rose Hill, Kansas, Bud worked for Bill Ross, owner of Ross Western Wear near Wichita. Bud went on to win several State Cutting Horse Championships. He rode in the American Quarter Horse Association and Appaloosa Horse Club contests. He won the National Champion Appaloosa Cutting Horse in 1972 on Hoddy Doc, a horse he bought and trained as a two-year old. In 1975, Bud got involved in the rodeo stock business by providing bucking stock for Sankey Rodeo Schools, run by his sons, Ike and Lyle. He moved on to producing bull ridings at his indoor arena. For 30 years he hosted these Saturday night bull ridings with bucking bulls he bought and developed. During this time, he purchased and sold horses in addition to bucking bulls. Many of the bulls that started out at his Rose Hill arena ended up in pro rodeos, including the National Finals. Bud also had a hand at helping cowboys get started on the road to pro rodeo. He enjoyed seeing young cowboys come to his jackpots and schools to go on to compete on the national stage. Milburn and Mike Ouither, Spud Whitman, Doug Shipe, John Luthi and Buds sons, Ike and Lyle, are a few of those who rode at Sankey's, and went on to a pro rodeo career. Bud is famous for his "Trading Post" which is filled with custom saddles, tack and historical western gear. Bud created a line of Sankey saddles, sold throughout the world. One of his most notable achievements is his invention of The Sankey Twister, an electronic bucking machine. Bud's two sons are both rodeo champions having competed in the National Finals Rodeo. They both qualified for the NFR in multiple events. Bud's grandkids have all competed in rodeo, and are currently involved in the business end of pro rodeo.
"I can make a damn sight more money with my head than with my hands."
Dustin "Dusty" Anderson was born in Skiddy, Kansas on March 1, 1922 to Harry and Mabel (Stilwell) Anderson. His mother died during his birth and he was raised by his grandparents. He was herding cattle and competing in rodeos as early as the age of 13. While at White City High School, Dusty was on the football team. At the same time, he worked with horses often riding five miles from Skiddy to White City to attend school or tend cattle. At 15, he quit school to work for the famous Clyde Miller Rodeo Company. Dusty lived all his life at Skiddy except his stint with Miller and when, at 17, he enlisted in the Army. He served during World War II in the 6th Ranger Battalion, receiving a Bronze Star for the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign. After the War he resumed his life in Skiddy. He successfully competed in rodeo after the War, but his true calling was working cattle, which he did for many of the ranchers in the Flint Hills area, providing them with head counts, health and condition, doctoring and pasturing. Additionally he raised, broke and trained many fine horses as he worked with cattle. Dusty raised a colt that became a World Champion, which put Skiddy on the map. As one who worked primarily on horseback, he did not own a motorized vehicle until his early 30's. Dusty received a Gold Card from the Rodeo Cowboys Association in 1951. He was a member of the Appaloosa Horse Club and held lifetime memberships in the American Quarter Horse and American Paint Horse Associations. He managed buffalo for the Cavalry at Fort Riley, Kansas for nine years and assisted in training 100 troops in a special guerilla force. For these acts he was named an Honorary Trooper by the Fort. He supported youth by donating horses to the Rock Springs 4-H Camp. As a result, he was named an Honorary Member Kansas 4-H Foundation and an Honorary Wrangler at Rock Springs 4-H Camp. In 1969 he married Dolly who won two Quarter Horse world championships in jumping. Together they raised stepson Michael Moore and stepdaughter Kelly Moore. Dusty Anderson died May 17, 2008. He was a friend of and, at times, worked with fellow 2014 Kansas Cowboy Hall of Fame Rancher/Cattleman Bob Alexander.
"All I ever wanted to do in my life was to be a cowboy, and I became one early."
Barry Ward was born in Dodge City, Kansas on September 26, 1953 to Leonard and Joan Ward. Raised on the family farm near Copeland, he grew up in ranching and farming. He attended Dodge City Community College and Northwestern Oklahoma State University. After college he returned to Copeland as a fourth generation farmer. In 1982, he married Dodge City resident, Victoria Schlegel and together they raised their two sons, B.J. and Hunter, and daughter, Sierra, in the house Barry grew up in. Barry served as a role model for youth when he coached both football and basketball at South Gray Junior High School in Copeland, Kansas. As a child, Barry dreamed of playing the guitar and when he was 35 years old he took his first guitar lesson from Ron Rolland in Dodge City. He began writing songs and soon sang at churches and western events. He became known as "The Landsman" due to his ties with farming and the land he cultivated being reflected in his music. Over the years he has been a regular performer at the Fidelity State Bank Dodge City Days Breakfast. He sang at the "Home on the Range" production by the Kansas Chapter of the Western Music Association celebrating the Kansas 150th anniversary in Wichita. He has entertained at the Kansas State Fair. In 2007, Barry was commissioned by the City of Greensburg to write "Up From the Debris" for the grand re-opening of the City after a devastating tornado. In 2008, Barry decided to pursue a full-time career as a musical entertainer, and moved with his wife, Victoria, to a ranch in Elbert, Colorado where he set up his production company Flying W Productions. He has performed in 22 states and two foreign countries, including at the 2002 Olympics in Utah and, in 2003, at Carnegie Hall in New York City. Barry was 2008 Male Vocalist in the Western Division of the Gospel Music Association. He was the first western entertainer to perform in Cameroon, Africa in 2010. Barry was named the 2013 Western Music Association Male Performer of the Year. His recording of "Eli Crow" written by the late Paul Hendel garnered him the Will Rogers Award as 2012 Song of the Year from the Academy of Western Artists. Several of his songs were included in the 2014 Kansas Cowboy CD released by the Kansas Chapter of the Western Music Association. In 2014 the closing credits of the documentary The Great American Wheat Harvest featured his song "Harvest in the Fall." His CD Lonesome County Road received the CD of the Year Award from Rural Roots Music Commission.
"But the best part of a farm is a family," from "Farm Family" on his Christmas CD.
Kansas Cowboy Hall of Fame
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