Cowboy Carlson was a popular draw in Arizona in the 1950s, perhaps at one point even more popular than Cowboy Bob Ellis. He was working the Tucson/Phoenix circuit in 1951 or so, before Ellis arrived. He was there for a long while too.
Carlson was usually seen as a single, but occasionally hooked up with Sandor Kovacs as one of his favorite tag team partners. Together, among the list of challangers, they turned back Gorgeous George and Bobby Pico in a 1957 Tucson bout, when the villaisn were disqualified. This turned into a six man rematch with Carlson, Kovacs and Jim Wright taking on George, Pico and Crusher Jefferies.
Carlson, like all fan favorite, also had the obligatory feud with Don Arnold.
Other people Carlson faced over the years included the Smith brothers (later converted to Russians as the Gorky brothers), Brute Bemis, Howard Cantonwine, Lord Carlton, Monte Ladue and Kenny Mayne.
Carlson wrestled in many other parts of the USA and was likewise considered a big draw in Texas.
Carlson made varied retirements and comebacks, where he evidently still tried to wrestle in the early 1970s.
He died in 1998.
Cowboy Carlson's real name was Orville Carlson and he was, as his nickname implied, a real cowboy. He was married to a Native American woman and raised cattle in Montana.