been done on the role of women, but a recent study has some discussion of earlier examples of cowgirls interspersed among recent oral histories.61 Cowboys, as a topic, shades into discussion of cattle trails. Harry Sinclair Drago discusses the trails, Wayne Gard edited an eyewitness account of 1879, and Donald Worcester gives the most recent summary of trail history.62 Robert R. Dykstra, in a major study, examines the rise and development of the cattle towns at the end of the long drive.63 Dykstra places the cattle towns in a much wider context than just local history of the growth of a frontier town. He considers the urban as well as the frontier agricultural process.
Finally, on the frontier range, are Valgene W. Lehmann Forgotten Legions-- sheep. The subject of some derision by contemporaries and later scholars as inappropriate to be considered as part of the pioneer process, sheep raising was always part of the range economy whether on the Eastern or the Western frontier, and there have been a few studies since the works of Towne, Wentworth, and Kupper in the 1940s. Richard Beach offers some discussion of frontier conditions in his study of sheep raising in western Pennsylvania, while Virginia Paul gives a general view of the subject in the West. Two recent studies offer excellent discussions of sheep raising in Washington and in Texas, and although the authors cover many years, they discuss the beginning of the enterprises in the pioneer period.64
It is a truism that all topics need more study, and agriculture on the frontier is no exception. There is need of modern study of pioneer agriculture in many of the states. Although we do not have to establish an Annales school of American agricultural history,65 the interest in combining social science, geography, and ecology should be encouraged. More work is needed on the impact of agricultural development on the ecological environment and on the social environment of the agriculturists. The question of the relationship of competing cattle, sheep, and crop enterprises on the frontier needs study. There are opportunities to look at the process by which the activity quickly passed from frontier to commercial. Clearly, the need for more comparative study of agriculture in various American frontier regions over time exists. Particularly in the Western region there is need for a look at the social side of the pioneering process. What, in the early years, produced attitudes about resource exploitation and the significance of the frontier experience? Answers to these questions are necessary to be able to discuss Western agricultural history in the twentieth century, as called for by Gerald D. Nash.66 In essence, more work needs to be done not only on pioneer agriculture as a process, but also on the context in which that process took place.