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John Crow
John Crow

John Crow (1902-xxxx)

Born July 27, 1902 at Cedarville, California to David and Martha Crow. He and his wife Georgia live in Burns, Oregon. Most of John Crow’s years have been spent in the saddle riding rangelands in California, Nevada and Oregon.

He went to school in a tent, but learned the lessons of life on the Oregon Desert. He comes from a family filled with Buckaroo Heritage. His father, Dave, was a respected Buckaroo and his brother Rankin, earned a reputation with his story telling, and story writing and also his riding skills. John was considered to be one of the best horsemen in the country.

His mother died when he was two years old, and most of his upbringing was done by relatives, as his father worked as a Buckaroo out in the deserts a long way from towns and schools. In those days you were welcome at yoru neighbor's home. John walked four or five miles to school. He later moved to a homestead in the Catlow Valley, a town called Sageview, now just a notation in Oregon history books. Then he rode his mustang horse about two miles just over the hill to a tent that served as a schoolhouse. When the weekends came he was out riding the range with his Dad.

From his earliest years Crow spent summers living and riding with Buckaroos. He had his first chew when he was barely seven years old. Then, you had to be as tough as the rest and John liked it. As a youngster Crow rode bare-foot, even though his Dad would give him the devil for it. He would wrap his toes over the edges of the stirrups and ride like the wind. Later, wearing boots, he joined the other Buckaroos working at jobs from ranch to ranch.

His early years were both fun and lonely. Some good times were with his father, brother and Uncle Bill; they would run down jackrabbits and put their earmarks on them. Other times he was left alone in a remote camp to tend the cattle. Crow got lonesome out there, as he was only a young boy at the time. He had lots of saddle horses and would catch then and ride in his spare time, just for something to do.

One time while roping a lame cow for doctoring, he got in a hurry dallying and his horse started to buck, his hand got caught under his dallies and tore off two fingers and broke another one. He was twenty miles from the main ranch, as he pulled off his glove he realized that he would be crippled in that hand for the rest of his life. Since then, Crow broke his back three times. The third time Crow had to make it back to his ranch, and find someone to watch the ranch before he could drive himself to Portland, Oregon stopping at Madres, Oregon to buy a new shirt and Levis. He had to push his pickup out of a snow bank to put chains on, this made his back hurt with terrible pain, so he stopped at the nearest liquor store and bought a fifth of whiskey to kill the pain. The Doctors treated him and gave him some pain pills but he couldn’t take them.

John shared his life for fifty-eight years with his wife, Georgia. She was working at a store-post office in Voltage, Oregon; a landmark south of Malheur Lake when the two met. They got married after going together for about six weeks.

For many years they operated a 2,000-acre ranch near Malheur National Antelope Refuge called the Crow’s Nest. They have relocated to Burns, Oregon where John keeps busy with saddle repairs and occasionally helps work cattle at the old ranch.

John Crow was still living when he was inducted into the Buckaroo Hall of Fame in September 1994.

John Crow & horses; Allen, Gopher & Antelope