Gaucho is a Spanish word referring to people that live in the pampas, chacos, and Patagonian grasslands. They are mostly found in Argentina, Uruguay, Southern Chile, and Southern Brazil. Gauchos are kind of like cowboys and were very common in the 19th century.
Gauchos are known to exist as early as the 1600’s. At that time the flatlands had a lot of cimarron cattle which was highly prized as a source of leather. The gauchos frequently killed the cattle in order to feed themselves – they cooked the meat over an open fire before it had a chance to spoil. Because of that, gauchos were looked down upon by the rest of society.
Over time, however, the reputation of the gaucho rose. They were the ones who knew the intricacies of the land inside and out. They were experts in all things pertaining to the pampa, knowledge that would soon become invaluable. When raising cattle became a profitable venture, it was the gauchos who knew how to manage the ranches. In fact, the gaucho way of grilling meat over an open fire would eventually become the main staple of Argentinean food – the asado.
However the gauchos would kill cows and only eat the meat. That made their reputation low. Their clothing was a shirt, vest, a kind of underwear, half foot boots, hemp footwear, a hat, a scarf, a belt, large knife, a lasso, some boot spurs, and a short whip. For the horse there was a saddle. They lived in ranches made of adobe with straw covering.