Ernest Nathan “Nate” Brown
Nate Brown was born in Lander, Wyoming and raised on Crow Creek, 64 miles outside of Lander on the Crow Indian Reservation. Brown says his mother was a natural with horses and cattle, she taught him to ride. From the time he was a little kid he learned to trust horses and studied them to figure out how they thought.
Nate’s Dad didn’t get past 6th grade, but was a poet and a great reader. Nate got his love for poetry from his Dad and when inspired, will write a poem. anywhere and on anything.
In 1941, Brown’s Dad purchased 18,000 acres in Grass Creek. Brown and a friend trailed 107 cattle with a team and wagon from Crow Creek to Grass Creek. For 48 years, from 1941-1989, Nate worked and ran the Brown family ranch on Grasscreek.
Nate spent his career handling livestock, horses and cattle. Working on the ranch, but always breaking horses in the process, he became renowned for his ability with horses. He says, horses vary in disposition, the way they think, just as much as people do. There’s horses that are halfwits, just like people.
Preferring to be called a horse trainer, rather than a horse breaker, Brown says he started many horses that he had to gradually make friends with. He would get a ‘real good do’ on the horse, (the horse is well broke and thinking the right way), then he became my friend.
A lesson he learned from horses, “Call a lesson a lesson. Don‘t try to take advantage. Make a friend.”
Asked if there was ever a horse he couldn’t train, he says, “No, I’ve had quite a few owners (I couldn’t train), but I never met a horse I couldn’t get along with.”
At one time, all of Nate’s saddle horses came out of wild horses.
There were hundreds of wild horses on the Fifteen Mile Range. Nate and his sister made a great horse catching team. Riding bareback on good fast horses gave them a little bit of advantage. The wild horses would follow along with their half wild horses once they got them to the corral.
Nate married his wife MaeCile in 1996 and until Nate’s death, together operated Horseworks, Wyoming, a working horse and cattle ranch, where interns come to work with horses and livestock.
Bucked off on his 82nd birthday and proud of it, Brown rode every day, until his death at 92.