Hollywood Has Misrepresented The American West For Decades
Black and Mexican cowboys were more prevalent than you think.
Many of Hollywood’s most famous Westerns make it seem like African American cowboys were rare in the old American West. In reality, they were a common sight, with some estimating 1 in 4 cowboys were black. Mexican vaqueros were also prevalent at the time, making the West much more diverse than many of us pictured.
The modern western “The Magnificent 7” was accused of tokenism for its racially diverse cast. But it is possibly more accurate than the 1960 original.