Boot/Shoe

“The Michelangelo of Cowboy Boots”

“Charlie Dunn, He’s the One to See” by Gene Fowler Photograph courtesy of The Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin. Photographer Jim McGuire made images of the Grand Ole Opry legends and other country-western stars, and here he shot bootmaking legend Charlie Dunn. Perched all pretty on the Colorado River, where the limestone hills of Central Texas tumble down from the west to meet the Blackland
Supplier

Montello Heel: An Industry Icon

By Liisa Andreassen Montello Heel Mfg., Inc. in Brockton, Mass. has been handcrafting custom shoe components at the same Brockton location for 110 years. In 1956 John Alden Pearson, the superintendent of the factory at the time, was able to purchase the company and it has been in his family ever since. Handcrafting custom heels and maintaining a solid foothold for more than a century, Montello Heel MFG., Inc. is
Supplier

C.S. Osborne & Co. 193 Years Strong

World-class maker of hand tools maintains success by sticking to what it does best By Lynn Ascrizzi A drop forge hammer at C.S. Osborne & Co., a manufacturer of leather, upholstery and industrial hand tools, founded in 1826. As any skilled handcrafter knows — you’re as good as your tools. After all, there’s nothing better than working with, say, a precisely sharp skiving knife whose well-formed handle doesn’t argue with
Feature

Cowboy Boot Bookman & Bon Vivant Buckaroo

The Reinventions of Tyler Beard By Gene Fowler “As a child,” wrote the late Tyler Beard in his 1999 book, Art of the Boot, “I had to be coaxed out of my Roy Rogers boots nightly.” “He loved those little boots, but that may have been one of his whoppers,” chuckles Tyler’s big sister, Debra Conkling, gently relishing her brother’s deployment of a Texan’s birthright to stretch the blanket or
Supplier

Wickett & Craig

Standing the Test of Time By Liisa Andreassen Originally started in 1867 and based in Toronto, Canada, today Wickett & Craig calls Curwensville, Pennsylvania, home – making it one of only two remaining vegetable tanneries in the U.S. Located on more than 16 acres of land, the state-of-the-art facility produces 4,500,000 square feet of both light and heavy-weight leathers annually. The former are used to craft luxury goods like shoes,
Harness

Freedman’s Family Tradition

Fine Saddles and Harness By Gene Fowler [gallery type="rectangular" ids="1046,1048,1051"] The worlds of leathercraft arts and equestrian culture are blessed with many a legacy enterprise. But few combinations of those worlds can boast a family tradition that goes back six generations and two centuries. In fact, there may be only one. David Freedman, of Freedman Harness in Toronto, traces his family business back to Warsaw, Poland. There, David’s great-great-great-grandfather, Mordechai
Accessories

For the Love of Fine Gloves

Dents has maintained its royal cachet and 'absolutely top-end' credo, for 240 years By Lynn Ascrizzi When it comes to the making of fine leather gloves, you’d be hard-pressed to find a glover with the preeminence and royal panache that is Dents. This small, luxury goods business, founded in 1777 by John Dent in Worcester, England, is quite possibly Britain’s oldest fashion manufacturer, a company meticulously crafting gloves of distinction
Boot/Shoe

Wheeler Boot Company

1960-2020 By Danna Burns-Shaw The Wheeler Boot Company has announced their retirement; they will be closing their doors in July 2020 and is now no longer accepting orders.  How many companies do you know that have to quit taking orders nearly four years before they close their doors (due to the sheer volume of pre-paid orders)?   This is the unique, inspiring story of such a company; a company that started
Saddles/Tack

Don King

The Man in the Center By Nick Pernokas They say that a good writer should never interject himself into his stories. They say a lot of things. When dealing with “legends” of the West, they say when the legend outshines the fact, print the legend. Only sometimes, you don’t have to and this is one of those times. Most of the story that I’m going to tell you came from