In 1997, seven friends teamed together and founded the non-profit western film and television appreciation organization, the Reel Cowboys. Originally comprised of entertainment industry types; actors, directors, producers, stunt men and women and other behind the camera people, its' aim was to keep alive the wholesome good values and morals most often portrayed in American western dramas.
Official Peter Brown Fan Site
Though the "Code of the West" was always unwritten, here is a partial list of some of the guidelines:
1. Don't inquire into a person's past. Take the measure of a man for what he is today.
2. Never steal another man's horse. A horse thief pays with his life.
3. Defend yourself whenever necessary.
4. Look out for your own.
5. Remove your guns before sitting at the dining table.
6. Don't make a threat without expecting dire consequences.
7. Never pass anyone on the trail without saying "Howdy."
8. When approaching someone from behind, give a loud greeting before you get within shooting range.
9. Don't wave at a man on a horse, as it might spook the horse. A nod is the proper greeting.
10. After you pass someone on the trail, don't look back at him. It implies you don't trust him.
11. Riding another man's horse without his permission is nearly as bad as making love to his wife. Don't even bother his horse.
12. A cowboy doesn't talk much; he saves his breath for breathing.
13. No matter how weary and hungry you are after a long day in the saddle, always tend to your horse's needs before your own
and get your horse some feed before you eat.
14. Cuss all you want, but only around men, horses and cows.
15. Complain about the cooking and you become the cook.
16. Do not practice ingratitude.
17. A cowboy is pleasant even when out of sorts. Complaining is what quitters do, and cowboys hate quitters.
18. Always be courageous. Cowards aren't tolerated in any outfit worth its salt.
19. A cowboy always helps someone in need, even a stranger or an enemy.
20. Never try on another man's hat.
21. Be hospitable to strangers. Anyone who wanders in is welcome at the dinner table. The same is true on the range.
22. Give your enemy a fighting chance.
23. Never wake another man by shaking or touching him, as he might wake suddenly and shoot you.
24. Real cowboys are modest. A braggert who is "all gurgle and no guts" is not tolerated.
25. Be there for a friend when he needs you.
26. A cowboy is loyal to his "brand," to his friends and those he rides with.
27. Never shoot an unarmed or unwarned enemy. This was also known as "the rattlesnake code." Always warn before you strike.
However, if a man was being stalked, this could be ignored.
28. Consideration for others is central to the code, such as: Don't stir up dust around the chuckwagon, don't wake up the wrong
man for herd duty, etc.
29. Honesty is absolute - your word is your bond, a handshake is more binding than a contract.
30. Live by the Golden Rule.
In 2007, Peter was honored by the Reel Cowboys with a Silver Spur Award for his contribution to westerns on television. His award was presented to him by Bruce Boxleitner. Thanks to Peter's wife Kerstin for the photos.
The Reel Cowboys, now including anyone with an clear understanding of cowboy mentality, believes that the Heroes' mission continues to this day! They have a lot of fun in the process, but their aim is to lend a helping hand to those less fortunate. Grass roots justice. Sticking up for the little guy. These are not ideals shared only of one political party or philosophy, but by Americans of all races, creeds and political diversities.
The Reel Cowboys, which now has grown to more than 100 members, is now an official "not for profit," 501(c)(3), California Corporation. The Reel Cowboys produces their annual awards banquet, the Silver Spur Awards which honor members of the entertainment industry who have portrayed western stories in movies and television. Profits generated by the Silver Spur Awards and other club sponsored events have provided needed funding contributions to worthy charities and individuals who benefit from that special grass roots helping hand.
Over the past years, thousands of dollars have helped groups such as Women's Care Cottage, (North Hollywood), The YWCA Domestic Violence Program (Southern California), The John Tracy Clinic (Los Angeles), Boys (& Girls Town), (Nebraska), Tierra Del Sol, (Shadow Hills, CA), Special Equestrian Riding Therapy (Moorpark, CA), The Burbank Temporary Aid Society and countless others.