Former Cache County cowboy inducted to the Bareback Riding Hall of Fame

Roy Rodgers and Earl W. Bascom on a movie set were they worked together. Bascom was inducted into the National Rodeo Bareback Riding Hall of Fame on Dec. 14, 2019.

A former Cache Valley cowboy rodeo champion and artist Earl W. Bascom was honored by The National Rodeo Bareback Riding Hall of Fame as its first inductee in Congress, Arizona, on Saturday, December 14, 2019.

Earl W. Bascom honored by The National Rodeo Bareback Riding Hall of Fame holds one of his cowboy sculptures.

Bascom was also known as a cowboy painter, printmaker, rodeo performer and sculptor.

Born in Vernal, Bascom was one of a rodeo family known as the Bronc Bustin’ Bascom Boys. During the 1930’s, he worked on the McBride Ranch in Wellsville.

His maternal grandparents, C.F.B. Lybbert and Anthonette Marie Olsen Lybbert, lived and are buried in Logan.

Bascom has been called the “father of the modern-day bareback rigging” and “father of modern rodeo bareback riding.”

In 1924, he thought up, designed and made rodeo’s first one-handed bareback rigging.

Bascom’s one-hand rigging helped rodeo bareback riding become a permanent part of the international sport of rodeo. The rigging completely changed the bareback riding event.

“It is befitting to honor Earl Bascom as the first inductee of the National Rodeo Bareback Riding Hall of Fame,” states Jim Liles, director of the hall of fame and museum. “Bascom is a legend and a pioneer in the world of rodeo bareback bronc riding.”

He not only invented the one-hand bareback rigging, but he also came up with the side-opening bucking chute which is now standard equipment used in modern rodeo arenas.

“The popularity of the sport of rodeo has spread throughout the world,” explained Liles. “I don’t know of anyone who has had a greater influence on the world-wide sport of rodeo and especially on the bareback riding event, than Earl Bascom.”

Cowboy Earl W. Bascom was honored by The National Rodeo Bareback Riding Hall of Fame as its first inductee in Congress, Arizona, on Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019.

Renditions of Bascom’s bareback rigging and bucking chute were part of the narrative and history of rodeos all over the world.

Bascom graduated with a fine art degree from Brigham Young University and became an internationally-known sculptor.

He was the first and only cowboy artist to be elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts of London since its founding in 1754. Bascom continued his art career at his California ranch until his death in 1995 at the age of 89.

The National Rodeo Bareback Riding Hall of Fame is the beginning of honors that are to come to the great bareback riders of rodeo history and to those who made great contributions to that rodeo event, even the great bareback bucking horses.

The National Rodeo Bareback Riding Hall of Fame and Museum has perhaps the greatest collection and history of bareback bronc riding riggings in the world.

 

 

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