About the Carrum Cowboys

Carrum Cowboys were teenagers aged between 13 and 17 years. From twelve to twenty cowboys could often be seen riding their horses around the local area. In the late 1950s, the cowboys would meet in the laneway behind the Stanley Street Dahsltrom house or in the vacant paddocks near the Walker's Street Jones' home.

The cowboys had many friends. The friends either seated behind a cowboy or riding alongside them in their jinkers, joined the cowboys on their many exploits around the district.

Locals knew each weekend would bring sounds of teenagers congregating, talking, laughing, and yelling. Weekends would also bring the sound of horses snorting and neighing, along with the pounding of hoofs, with the rider's coming and going.

Not everyone liked the commotion caused by the cowboys, but their activities were usually harmless. Separating the cowboys from other teenagers of the time was their joint interest and love of horses.

The cowboys were a familiar sight on Carrum streets. On weekends, they would often gallop their horses along the river bank, down the local roads, or at the beach.

Cowboys riding on the footpath or riding too fast at the beach would bring forth a litany of complaints from local residents. Several times cowboys were pursued by police, court action was prompt, and fines imposed.

By the age of 17 they had graduated from horses to motorbikes and cars.

As one of them said “Then we found out about girls and cars”. [1]




Carole Ross


1. Ross C. Interview Jim Jones. 2008.

2. Newspaper articles from Newspaper Collection, Chelsea Historical Society.