Begins with “R”
Raft – A large quantity.
Rag Proper – Dress well.
Rail It – To travel by rail-road.
Railheads – Towns with facilities for loading cattle onto trains.
Railroad Bible – A deck of cards. This stemmed from the large number of card sharks working aboard the railroads.
Raise – To make a raise. Meaning to make a haul, to raise the wind.
Raise One’s Bristles – To excite one’s anger.
Raise Sand – Start trouble.
Raisin’ Cain – Loud, noisy boisterous.
Rake And Scrape – To collect.
Randy – Wanton or lecherous.
Ranny – A top cowhand, skilled cowboy.
Rantankerous – Contentious, a variation of cantankerous.
Rappee – An inferior quality of snuff.
Rattler – Freight train
Rattled – To become nervous, worried, uneasy.
Rattling – Jolly, excellent, smart
Rattle Your Hocks – Hurry up, get a move on.
Rat Trap – A woman’s bustle.
Raving Distracted – Stark mad.
Rebel Soldier – Rye whiskey.
Reckon – To guess or think. “I reckon that’ll do right fine.”
Reckoning up – Talking about something or someone in a slanderous manner. “I overheard them reckoning up the mayor.”
Red Eye – Whiskey, also called “red disturbance” and “red ink.”
Red Lane – A vulgar name for the throat, chiefly used by those drinking alcohol.
Reloading Outfit – Cowboy term for eating utensils, cups, and a plate.
Rench – A vulgar pronunciation of the word rinse.
Retch – Past tense of reach.
Retiracy – Sufficiency, competency.
Reverent – Strong, as, reverent whisky, not diluted.
Rib – Wife.
Rib Wrenches – Spurs.
Ride a Shank’s Mare – To walk or be set afoot.
Ride For the Brand – To be loyal to the ranch and rancher that pays a cowboy.
Ride Out on a Rail – To be forced to leave town.
Rig – Saddle.
Right as a Trivet – Right as rain, sound as a nut, stable.
Right as Rain – Fine. “After a good night’s rest, he’ll be right as rain.”
Right Smart – Many, much, good. “He got a right smart bit of work done.”
Ring – A group of businessmen or politicians form to advance their own interests, usually in such a way that places the public at risk. “The notorious Santa Fe Ring was an unscrupulous group of politicians in the 1800s.”
Ring in – To force or insinuate oneself into company where one is not wanted or does not belong.
Ringster – A member of ring, or group whose objective is to profit at the public’s expense.
Ringy – Ornery or angry man or animal.
Rip – Reprobate. “He’s a mean ol’ rip.”
Rip Out – Impatiently give vent to one’s feeling or opinions. “When he came upon the town bully, he ripped out what he thought of him.”
Rip-roaring, Rip-staver, Rip-snortin’ – An impressive person or thing.
Road Agent – A robber, bandit, desperado.
Road Ranch – A supply center or store, often located on the major trails headed westward, that supplied the wagon trains with provisions.
Rode Hard and Put Up Wet – Ugly, rough or hard looking. “She looks like she’s been rode hard and put up wet!”
Roastineer – Corn roasted over an open fire while still in the husks.
Rock – A piece of money.
Rocky Mountain Canary – A burro used by the miners in the Rocky Mountains.
Rod – A revolver.
Rode Fence – Patrolled the range checking see if any areas of fencing needed repairs.
Roily Or Rily – Turbid, excited to resentment, vexed.
Rook – To cheat, to dupe, such as a cardsharper or conman might do in a poker game.
Rookus Juice – Liquor.
Roostered – Drunk. “Looks like those cowboys are in there gettin’ all roostered up.”
Roost over one – To get the better of.
Roping In – Cheating.
Rot-gut – Bad liquor.
Rouncher, roncher – Used to describe something extreme, powerful, large, fine, remarkable.
Round Browns – Cow chips.
Round Up – A gathering of sheep, cattle or pigs.
Rousing – Very great, commonly applied to a fire.
Round-Rimmers – Hats with a round rim, hence, those who wear them.
Row – A fight
To Row Up – To punish with words, to rebuke.
Row Up Salt River – Used generally to signify political defeat.
Rowdy-dow – Low, vulgar.
Ruckus – Loud noise, voices, a racket. “What’s all the ruckus about?”
Ruinatious – Ruinous.
Rumbumptious, rumbustious – Haughty, pompous, boisterous, making a great fuss about.
Rum-hole, Rum-mill – A small drinking establishment, saloon.
Run – A small stream or rivulet.
To Run – To press with jokes, sarcasm, or ridicule. ‘To get the run upon one,’ is to make a butt of him.
Run against a pill – To be shot, to take a bullet.
To Run One’s Face – To make use of one’s credit.
Russer, Rusher – A dashing, sensation-causing man, a heavy player – often applied to politicians and clergymen.