Walt Coburn

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Walt Coburn (1889-1971) was an American writer of Westerns. Coburn was born in White Sulphur Springs, Montana Territory, the son of Robert Coburn Senior, the founder of the noted Circle C Ranch.[1]

Coburn served in the military in the First World War. He later spent time as a cowboy and a surveyor, before becoming a full-time writer in the 1920s.

Western author[edit]

Coburn began his career with Western stories in general fiction pulp magazines such as Adventure and Argosy.[2] Later Coburn moved on to pulps specializing in Westerns, including Western Story Magazine, Lariat Story Magazine, Ace-High Western and Frontier Stories.[3] He often wrote for the Fiction House pulp magazines Dime Western and Star Western who promoted Coburn as "the Cowboy Author".[4]

Coburn was enormously prolific; Flanagan states Coburn wrote almost two million words of fiction over a thirty year period.[1] Coburn was so popular that eventually, two pulp magazines - Walt Coburn’s Western Magazine and Walt Coburn’s Action Novels were issued, consisting mainly of reprints of Coburn's work.[2]

After the pulps ended in the 1950s, Coburn switched his focus to writing paperback originals.[2]

Coburn was a devout Christian. Coburn claimed, in his posthumously published autobiography Western Word Wrangler (1973) that God had chosen him to spread the Christian message through his fiction.[1]



  • The Ringtailed Rannyhans (1927)
  • Mavericks (1929)
  • Barb wire (1931)
  • Walt Coburn's action novels; four western novels (1931)
  • Law Rides the Range (1935)
  • Sky-Pilot Cowboy (1937)
  • Pardners of the Dim Trails (1951) (vt: Tough Texan)
  • The Way of a Texan (1953)
  • Drift Fence (1953)
  • The Burnt Ranch (1954)
  • Gun Grudge (1955)
  • Wet Cattle (1955) (vt: Violent Maverick)
  • The Square Shooter (1956)
  • Border Jumper (1956)
  • The Night Branders (1956)
  • One Step Ahead of the Posse (1956)
  • Cayuse (1956)
  • Stirrup High (1957)
  • Fear Branded (1957)
  • Horsethief Trail (1957)
  • Spiderweb Ridge (1958)
  • Beyond the Wild Missouri (1958)
  • Buffalo Run (1958) (vt: Fast Gun)
  • Free Rangers (1959)
  • Dark and Bloody Ground (1960)
  • Guns Blaze on Spiderweb Range (1961)
  • Invitation to a Hanging (1963)
  • Ramrod (1963)
  • Branded (1963)
  • Sons of Gunfighters (1963)
  • The Kansas Killers (1966)
  • Feud Valley (1969)
  • The Renegade (1969)
  • La Jornada (1971)
  • Sleeper's Mark (1990)
  • Showdown Mesa (1992)
  • Coffin ranch : a western trio (1998; edited by Jon Tuska).


  • Pioneer Cattleman in Montana: Story of the Circle C Ranch (1968)
  • Western Word Wrangler (1973)


  1. ^ a b c John D. Flanagan, "Coburn, Walt", in Twentieth Century Western Writers, edited by Geoff Sadler. St. James Press, 1991, ISBN 0-912289-98-8 , (pp. 129-34)
  2. ^ a b c Lee Server, "Coburn, Walt" in Encyclopedia of Pulp Fiction Writers. Facts on File, 2002 ISBN 978-0-8160-4578-5 (pp. 65-66)
  3. ^ Jon Tuska, The Western Story: A Chronological Treasury, University of Nebraska Press, 1999, ISBN 978-0-8032-9439-4 (p.xxviii).
  4. ^ Jon Tuska, Star Western, Gramercy Books, 1995, ISBN 0-517-14688-6 (p.132).