Wild West


Dominique Laxalt, a Basque born in the French Pyrenees in 1886, came to America around the turn of the 20th century and spent most of his life herding sheep in Nevada’s Great Basin. In his waning years, as son Robert details in the book Sweet Promised Land, Laxalt made a nostalgic trip to his native Basque Country only to realize the American West had become his true home.

Laxalt was just one of many Basques from France and Spain to carry their sheepherding tradition across the Atlantic. The first appeared in Spanish California in the late 1700s, the Great Basin becoming a favorite destination. In fact,

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