The CowBelles started as a social group for the wives of cattlemen. Soon statewide chapters formed. Wyoming founded the first state CowBelles organization in 1940.
The American National CowBelles incorporated with the goal of increasing demand for beef across the United States. They conducted beef cooking demonstrations in supermarkets and marketing campaigns. Chapters of the CowBelles collected and distributed recipes. Creative cooks submitted recipes like Beef Nut Bread and Beef Brownies.
The CowBelles sponsored a "Beef for Father's Day" campaign which was launched by the club president from Sheridan, Wyoming.
Local cooking competitions were held. In 1974 cooks gathered for the first "National Beef Cook-Off".
Learn more about the CowBelles and cooking with beef in the American National Cattlewomen Records at UW's American Heritage Center.