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Gene Autry's Cowboy Code

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Gene Autry was a Texan, having been born in Tioga, Texas on September 29, 1907.  He went on to become one of the biggest of the singing cowboys, best known for his signature tune "Back in the Saddle Again."  He is also still remembered for his Christmas songs, most especially his biggest hit "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" as well as "Frosty the Snowman," "Here Comes Santa Claus,"  and "Up on the House Top."  His investments from the proceeds from his movie and singing career made him fabulously wealthy, such that he became the founding owner of the California Angels major league baseball team in 1961, remaining owner until he sold the club a controlling interest in the club to Walt Disney in 1996. 

From 1940 to 1956, Autry had a huge hit with a weekly show on CBS Radio, "Gene Autry's Melody Ranch."  His horse, Champion, also had a Mutual radio series, The Aventures of Champion,  and a CBS TV series with the same name. In response to his many young radio listeners aspiring to emulate him, Autry created the Cowboy Code, or Ten Cowboy Commandments. These tenets promoting an ethical, moral, and patriotic lifestyle that appealed to youth organizations such as the Boy Scouts, which developed similar doctrines. The Cowboy Code consisted of rules that were "a natural progression of Gene's philosophies going back to his first Melody Ranch programs—and early pictures."According to the code:

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.

Gene autry's cowboy code.jpg

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