It would be hard to find someone in Wyoming that does not know about The Johnson County War, also known as the War on Powder River and the Wyoming Range War.  It was a body conflict that took from 1889 to 1893. The conflicts began when cattle companies started ruthlessly persecuting alleged rustlers in the area, many of whom were innocent settlers that competed with them for land, livestock and water rights.

What happened during this time has been loose portrayed in Hollywood cowboy movies for decades. But most of those movies are fiction, with a kernel of truth.

To know what really happened one might want to pick up a good book that chronicles the history of those events. Here are 5 books we recommend. Here are 4 books that do just that.

1). Wyoming Range War: The Infamous Invasion of Johnson County. Wyoming attorney John W. Davis retells the story of the West’s most notorious range war. Having delved more deeply than previous writers into land and census records, newspapers, and trial transcripts.

2). Violence in the West: The Johnson County Range War. Marilynn S Johnson examines the case studies of the Johnson County range war in Wyoming and the Ludlow Massacre during the southern Colorado coal strike, Johnson demonstrates that western violence in this period was a product of the transformation of the West.

3). The war on powder river. Helena Huntington Smith studies the battles.

4). The Johnson County War. A look at the politics behind the war.