The Long Riders' Guild

    The Abernathy Boys

by Long Rider Jayme Feary


In their time, the Abernathy boys

Were known about far and wide

For their horseback expeditions

Two brothers who rode side by side.


OK to Roswell then Santa Fe


In 1909 to the Federal Marshall

Of the Oklahoma Territory:

“Dad, may we ride Santa Fe

For fun and some new sites to see?”


After much thought and pondering

He saw his boys’ minds were set.

But if he stayed quiet, they would too;

In a few days they’d forget.


But forget, no way; them boys were primed.

They had an adventure on their minds.

Little did they know, that once finished

Fame was what they’d find.


From Oklahoma City, all the way

To Roswell then Santa Fe,

Across tough country and Comanche lands,

Danger and adventure along the way.


Who believed that they’d survive,

And let alone arrive?

Two brothers riding 1,300 miles

One age eight and the other five.


OK to Washington and New York


The next year the boys decided to ride

To see ex-President Roosevelt

To say hello and tell him

How real Rough Riders felt.


From Oklahoma City to Washington, D.C.

Then on for a Big Apple bite

Bud on his sorrel gelding Sam

And Sam on his Geronimo white.


In Washington they visited President Taft

And rode onward to New York,

Where Teddy Roosevelt waited for them

To salute them for their work.


People gawked and mumbled,

“Are these kids really them,

The boys who rode across this land

Risking both life and limb?”

Who would’ve thought they’d make it so far

Oklahoma to New York - two hicks

Two brothers - buddies - riding 2,000 miles

One age nine and the other six.


New York to San Francisco


No time to ride home, they left their horses

In New York until the next year

They bought a car and drove back home,

Hastening the automobile frontier.


The next year they returned to New York

To fetch their ponies home.

But before heading back, they took one more ride

From New York to Califor-ni-o.


They saddled up, and cinched ‘em down

And lit out like the wind.

Two little boys heading east to west

With horses as best friends.


When people saw them, they oo-ed and ah-ed,

They prayed the boys wouldn’t fail

They touched Bud and Temple, took souvenirs

Of hair pulled from the ponies’ tails.


Who imagined that they’d arrive

With horses’ engines revvin’

Two country bumpkins after 3,800 miles

One age ten and other seven.


Those boys still hold the record

For a cross-country trip on a horse

It stands right firm at sixty-two days

And will never be broken, of course.


So I raise my glass to the Abernathy Boys

And their feats that are hard to believe,

Two boys too young to know about limits

And what they weren’t supposed to achieve.


In Heaven today, they must be traveling

On their ponies with feathered wings,

Arriving at each and every new star

As God smiles and the angels sing.



-- Long live the memory of Bud and Temple Abernathy, young equestrian heroes.



Jayme Feary

Moran, Wyoming



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