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Reub Long Used to Say, “I’m a Horse-made Man.”

Southeastern Oregon rancher, story teller and author Reub [cq] Long was known as the Sage of Fort Rock in Lake County where he lived most of his life. Since his death in 1974 at age 76, his cowboy philosophy has become legendary.

Long and co-author County Extension Agent E.R. Jackman, published the book titled “The Oregon Desert” in 1964. Reprinted 13 times by 2003, the book spread Long’s fame.

The book reveals a lifelong affinity to horses.

“I am a horse-made man,” he said.  He bought his first new saddle when he was 7 years old with money saved by selling coyote hides and doing chores for freighters and stockmen. 

His ranch produced horses for freighting, haying, construction jobs, dude outfits, riding, bucking for rodeos, and even for filming westerns. 

His co-author, Jackman, quoted Long as saying, “... if you think all men are equal, you’ve never been a pedestrian and met a man on a good horse.”

Long said, “A horse is good for a boy or a man. It helps something inside of him. A man trained by a horse for many years is never quite the same afterward, and is better.”

Source:  Jackman, E. R., and R. A. Long. The Oregon Desert. 14th printing. Caldwell, Idaho: The Caxton Printers Ltd., 2003. Print.

Kernan Turner is the Southern Oregon Historical Society’s volunteer editor and coordinator of the As It Was series broadcast daily by Jefferson Public Radio. A University of Oregon journalism graduate, Turner was a reporter for the Coos Bay World and managing editor of the Democrat-Herald in Albany before joining the Associated Press in Portland in 1967. Turner spent 35 years with the AP before retiring in Ashland.