The seagoing cowboys were men and boys who volunteered after World War II to tend the livestock shipped by the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration and the Heifer Project to war-devastated countries.
They were students and farmers, bankers and preachers, laborers and teachers. They were Brethren, Mennonite, Catholic; Protestant, Amish, unchurched.
Some sought adventure, some sought to serve people whose lives had been torn apart by war, some wanted to see firsthand what they had only read about or seen on film.
This website is dedicated to telling their story. In these pages, you will find information about the seagoing cowboys, the organizations for which they worked, their trips, and more.
I’ve been researching, writing about, and documenting the history of the seagoing cowboys since 2002; and I’m happy to be able to share it with a wider audience here.
If you have questions or comments as you read these pages, feel free to send me an email through the Contact page. I will continue to add information to the site as I process the materials I have collected. I invite you to come back often to see what’s new.
I hope you find this history as fascinating as I do!
~Peggy Reiff Miller
Header photo credit: Elmer J. Bowers, SS Norwalk Victory, en route to Trieste, Italy, February 1946. Cowboy unidentified.