Pioneer Women


In 1915, H. E. "Ed" Crowley wrote an essay that was published in The Cattleman. In this tribute to pioneer women, he explained, "The widow [Selete Crowley] herein described, was the mother of this writer, and these incidents in her life are told in loving remembrance of her, and to portray in this simple way a life of unselfish devotion to duty, of being helpful to humanity and to making this old world better for having lived in it."

Mr. Lionel Chambers, Director, Publication Services of The Cattleman, granted permission to quote passages from this work: "The Wife of the Pioneer - Hardships Incident to Frontier Life." All quoted material on this page and in Selete's story is from that source unless otherwise indicated.

Ed Crowley defined the purpose of his article in this way: "I have seen in print, and heard delivered from the platform at various times, splendid eulogies to those pioneer cattlemen who braved the dangers, endured the hardships incident to frontier life, and converted the savage inhabited wilderness into a peace-loving, Godfearing commonwealth until today grand old Texas is second to none. . . . I delight to honor those men but it is my opinion that the most important factor in the development of Texas was her women, the mothers, wives and daughters of those sturdy pioneers, and concerning whom too little has been said in a public way."

"The purpose of this article therefore is intended, as best I may, to give some mention in detail of incidents in the life of pioneer women that no history will record, but which I trust will serve to remind those of us who know, and to inform those who do not know, of the beauties of a life of self-sacrifice, devotion to duty, love of home and of country, as exemplified by the pioneer women of Texas. . . . The incidents that I shall relate are just a few of those that came directly under my personal observation and have no relation whatever to historical events."


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