01/HM.60 Guide to the Ruth Roach Salmon Papers Salmon, Ruth Roach

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This finding aid was encoding in EAD by Archon 3.21 from an SQL database source on March 17th, 2021. The collection description/finding aid is written in English March 17th, 2021 Rachel Motes updated this record on June 28, 2017 to include the folder level listing for Box 1989.
Guide to the Ruth Roach Salmon Papers 1914/1984 Manuscripts Overview of the Collection Ruth Roach Salmon Papers 1914-1984 1920s-1930s 01/HM.60 Salmon, Ruth Scantlin Roach 12.00 English Manuscripts The Ruth Roach Salmon Papers contain photographs and printed materials highlighting her career as a rodeo cowgirl.

Other Information:

Digital surrogates of items from this collection are available in the Portal to Texas History. The UNT Special Collections department houses an oral history with Ruth Roach, OH 87, in their holdings. Please contact the UNT Special Collections department for further information.

Additional information may be found at https://texashistory.unt.edu/explore/collections/RSRS/

Biographical Information:

Ruth Scantlin grew up in Excelsior Springs, Missouri, where she started riding her uncle's Shetland Ponies at about the age of three. She taught herself to do trick horse riding during her childhood, for fun. After completing the eighth grade, Ruth, who was a scant 5'2" tall, left home and travelled to Oklahoma to join the Miller's 101 Ranch rodeo in 1914, as a trick rider. Prior to the start of the show season, she married bronc rider, Bryan Roach, and became Ruth Roach. She was known as Ruth Roach throughout her rodeo career.

Ruth and Bryan Roach traveled with the 101 Ranch show on a 1914 European tour, where they performed in France, England, Ireland, and Belgium. During the tour, however, World War I broke out, the show was cancelled, all of the rodeo horses were confiscated by the British for their war effort, and the performers returned to the United States.

Ruth continued to perform in rodeo shows all over the U.S. in such places as New York City, Boston, Pendleton, Cheyenne, Denver, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, and St. Louis. She joined the Hagenback-Wallace Circus for a time and began to ride bucking horses in addition to trick riding, making her bronc riding debut at the 1917 Fort Worth rodeo. She performed in Madison Square Garden, in New York City, every season from 1916 to 1934.

Ruth and Bryan Roach took a second trip to Europe with the John "Tex" Austin rodeo in 1924. After this second rodeo tour of Europe was finished, a man named Tommy Kirnan formed a group, including Ruth and Bryan, which continued to perform in London and Paris for several months. They appeared on stage at the London Palladium and gave a command performance for the British royal family. During their stay in London, the group was given special permission to ride on the royal bridle path, sometimes in the company of the King.

By 1936, Ruth and Bryan Roach had divorced and she was working for W. D. Johnson in a rodeo show at the Texas State Fair. During her time performing at the Fair, she met a Texas rancher named Fred (Dick) Salmon, who owned 2,000 acres near Nocona, in Montague County. After a two-year courtship, Ruth married Dick and became a rancher's wife, a role she enjoyed for the rest of her life. She died in 1986, at the age of ninety.

Ruth Scantlin Roach Salmon is an inductee in the National Cowgirl Hall of Fame (1989) and the National Cowboy Hall of Fame (1989). She is the winner of several titles, including World's Champion All Around Cowgirl, World's Champion Trick Rider, and World's Champion Girl Bronc Rider. In addition to these titles, she was also acclaimed as one of the world's most beautiful cowgirls and her pictures were featured on calendars and rodeo placards all over the country.

Administrative Information Acquisition Information:




Conditions Governing Use:

Reproduction and publication of materials in this collection are subject to the policies of the UNT Special Collections department. Copyright restrictions may apply.

Conditions Governing Access:

This collection is not restricted.

Preferred Citation:

Ruth Roach Salmon Collection, University of North Texas Special Collections

Physical Characteristics or Technical Requirements:

This collection is stored at the Willis Library and is available for same day paging.

Arrangement of Materials:

Material is arranged by series.

Scope and Contents

The papers of Ruth Scantlin Roach Salmon detail Salmon's life as a rodeo cowgirl, and highlight her twenty-four year career as a trick rider and a bronco buster during the 1920s and 1930s. Material consists of 343 black and white photographs taken during Salmon's rodeo days which focus on the various venues her performances took place in, her many friends who were also rodeo performers, and action shots snapped during her rodeo performances; as well as nine folders of written materials. The photographs record the various venues in which she performed and her many friends in rodeo. Some are action shots taken by a professional photographer during rodeo performances. A select number of un-copyrighted black and white photographs from this collection are available for viewing on the Portal to Texas History.

Detailed List of Contents id124652 id124653 1989 Written Records and Photographic Material 706231 id175855 1989 Written Records id175859 1989 1 Letters 1918 - 1984 Scope and Contents

Within this folder are 4 letters; one to Clarence and Nora from Bryan Roach, another to Miss Roach from Grace and Mother, the third to Mrs. Roach from Roger Jacquart, and the last one to Bryan Roach from Leonard Stroud.

id175860 1989 2 Literary Productions – Book and Article Clippings id175861 1989 3 Literary Productions – Newspaper Clippings, originals id175862 1989 4 Literary Productions – Newspaper Clippings, originals and photocopies 1929 - 1981 id175863 1989 5 Literary Productions – Newspaper Clippings, photocopies id175864 1989 6 Printed Material – Cards Scope and Contents

Contains a Christmas and New Year greeting card that comes with a photograph; its’ signature is illegible. Also included are two slips of paper with photocopies of business cards.

id175865 1989 7 Printed Material – Stationary Scope and Contents

Contains a single orange sheet of stationary for the “World’s Championship Rodeo in Chicago Stadium as presented by Col. W. T. Johnson.

id175856 1989 Photographic Materials id175857 1989 8 Photocopies Scope and Contents

Richard Himmel took these photograph photocopies to the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame in an effort to get identification for the individuals featured within each of the actual photographs. Since the UNT Special Collections has the original photographs with identification, some of these photocopies, the ones without notes, have been deaccessioned.

id175858 1989 9 Photographs

Photographs from this folder were separated in 08/23/94 and are now stated as being located in Sink Matte Box 1989.

Scope and Contents

While this folder no longer holds photographs, it does contain two photograph descriptions, two empty photograph portfolios, and two separation sheets.

id180774 1989 10 Copy Negatives no date Scope and Contents

Black and white, 6X6 negatives of images in this collection.

id129345 1989a Oversize 706482 Scope and Contents

NOTE: This box contains materials from the Alvin Mansfield Owsley Collection, C.R. Fowler Hardware Company Records, the Denton Association for a Liberal Press, and the Oral History Association Records. The box is housed in the Special Collections Department in the Willis Library and it is shelved in the flat storage (oversize) collection under the Oral History Association with a Collection Number of HM.12.

id137180 1989b Slides 642560 Scope and Contents

NOTE: This box contains the Ruth Roach Salmon Collection, the Enid Justin - Nocona Boot Company Collection, the William Fritz Humphreys Papers and the Alvin Mansfield Owsley Collection. This box is shelved under the Collection Number for the Enid Justin Collection, which is BA.15.

id124747 Photo Prints id124748 1989-1 Print Box 706549 id124749 1989-2 Print Box 706554 id124750 1989-3 Print Box 706555 id124751 1989-4 Print Box 706550 id124752 1989-5 Print Box 706557 id124753 1989-6 Print Box 706556 id124754 1989-7 Print Box 706553 id124755 1989-8 Print Box 706552 id124756 1989-9 Print Box 706551