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Wild West Cowboy Facts

Cowboy Bunkhouse


When not on the trail, western working cowboys lived together in the communal bunkhouse on ranches in North America.

The standard bunkhouse was a barracks-like building with a large open room with narrow beds or cots for each individual and little privacy.  The bunkhouse of the late 19th century was usually heated by a wood stove and personal needs were attended to in an outhouse (outdoor toilet).

Modern bunkhouses are still in existence on some large ranches that are too far away from towns for an easy daily commute, but these are now equipped with electricity, central heating and modern indoor plumbing.

The old western bunkhouse also was referred to as the doghouse, the dive, the shack, the dump, the dicehouse or the ram pasture.  It was a placed to rest up and relax between taking on ranch chores.

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