Back in the 1940s when he was reaching the height of his popularity and success, the great Gene Autry — Public Cowboy No. 1 — put together a list of basic tenets to live by known as The Cowboy Code.
Intended originally for his younger listeners and fans, the Cowboy Code grew in renown over the years and is often referred to nowadays as “The Ten Cowboy Commandments.”
Here’s the Cowboy Code as Gene drew it up:
- The Cowboy must never shoot first, hit a smaller man, or take unfair advantage.
- He must never go back on his word, or a trust confided in him.
- He must always tell the truth.
- He must be gentle with children, the elderly, and animals.
- He must not advocate or possess racially or religiously intolerant ideas.
- He must help people in distress.
- He must be a good worker.
- He must keep himself clean in thought, speech, action, and personal habits.
- He must respect women, parents, and his nation’s laws.
- The Cowboy is a patriot.