05_oxenLogging“The pioneers called them bulls and used them for logging, as this is the way it had always been done, as soon as the wagon trails allowed them to come. They could not hitch enough animals together to ground skid the giant western logs, however, so they put down skids to pull them over. They learned this by watching the Egyptians skid stone to build their pyramids.

They peeled the skin for a short haul. They often snipped the lead end of the logs.

The picture is of the lower Columbia River.The driver was called a bull skinner. On his goad was a leather stop to allow the needle to attract the animal’s attention but not draw blood. The drivers earned their nickname by removing the stop and in a frenzy of temper ripping into the animals and virtually skinning them alive, then crying. My neighbor logged with a bull as late as 1940. He, like most drivers, was manly and gentle.” – written by Howard B. Taylor