Lingle bar enlists local ranchers to help brand wall

September 12, 2018

LINGLE, Wyo. — Sixty-four brands are burned into the south wall of the Corner Bar in Lingle, where the mother-daughter team of Patty and Ellee Franklin took over the bar on May 1.

The Franklins have since redesigned the bar’s look, the most prominent change being the brands on the wall.

“We wanted something that tied the bar to the community,” Patty said, so the two invited as many farmers and ranchers as they could to leave their mark on the wall.

Cattlemen from Goshen, Platte, Albany and Laramie counties converged in Lingle on Aug. 18 for a branding party. The bar served Rocky Mountain oysters, brought in a band, and ran extension cords to power the electric brands and lit a firepit to heat the traditional irons.

“There were so many cowboys and ranchers watching it,” Patty said.

Along with the brands, the Franklins keep a book with the names of each ranch branded on the wall, to help customers identify who and what is on the wall. The symbols burned into the wood mark extended families and ranches that go back generations. One of them, the Jay Em brand, is one of the first.

In the center of all the brands, under the cow skull hanging on the wall, is a simple LF brand. It belonged to Patty’s father, Larry Franklin, who was born into a ranching family in Bridgeport and worked around cattle and farming for years in Torrington. Using his branding iron once again was an emotional experience for Patty, who keeps her father’s branding irons behind the bar.

“To see it again was really exciting,” she said. “It touched my heart because now my dad’s a part of this. He gets to always be a part of what Ellee and I are building from here forward.”

Bringing the brands and the cowboys together, she added, was like a family reunion. It also allowed the ranchers to leave their marks.

“They’re so proud of it,” she said. “They come in and they’re like, ‘That’s my brand.’ They get to have a part of their heritage on the wall.”

Patty said she wants to add more brands to the wall.

“We’re going to plan to have another branding party and have some more people bring their brands in,” she said.

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