Western Saddles

  • Martinez McCabe Saddle +

    The exquisite saddle on display, designed by Charles Pizarro Martinez (aka Charlie or C.P.), was 60 years in the making! The saddle, envisioned by Martinez in the early 1930s’ was to be a


    centerpiece for his showroom emphasizing the detailed hand engraved stamped sterling for which Martinez became famous for. It is a masterpiece, many of the silver pieces made over 50 years ago complimented by contemporary and custom tooled leather.  

    Martinez Saddle In 2013 Rose Parade
    LBMP_2013See more pics - click here
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  • Western Saddles of Hollywood +

    Jim Rogers Collection - Includes saddles of - and from Saddle Makers
    Flowers_3_Side_72dpi Gunsmoke_LS_72_dpi Montie_Montana_72dpi

    McCabe MartinezMartinez_Mccabe_72_dpi_thumb

    Western Saddle & Tack Glossary


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  • Saddle & Tack Glossary +

    Western Saddles of Hollywood
    Complements of CowboyShowcase.com
    Anvil:   hard surface used to shape horseshoes or pound rivets.
    bridle on a horse  

    BRIDLE: (la brida, el freno) the head harness for a horse, basically consisting of the headstall, bit, chin strap and reins, but often including also a brow band, nose strap, and throat latch.

    Allie Bear ruby mounted silver bit BIT: (el freno) - metal mouthpiece on a bridle, when connected to reins, used to steer the horse.  There are a great many variations on bit shapes and severity.  Some types include half-breed, spade, snaffle, curb, and ring bits. 
      rawhide bosal
    BOSAL:  (bozal) noseband, usually of braided rawhide, used with headstall to make a hackamore .   Usually used with a mecate for reins.
    Angel wearing a breast collar BREAST COLLAR:  strap, often made of leather, that passes around the animal's chest and is attached to the saddle.  Used to keep the saddle from sliding back.
    britchin BRITCHIN:  (Breeching) Leather strap arrangement fitting over an animal's hind quarters to keep a saddle from slipping forward.  Essential on mules because of their slim shoulders.  See packsaddle
    The term breeching also refers to a permanent identification mark made horizontally across both sides of a cow's rump (in the same place the leather strap is shown on the mule in the photo).  
    bucking rolls BUCKING ROLLS:  padded attachments at the front of the saddle to supplement the swells to help the rider stay in the saddle.  Most often used on A-fork saddles.
    cantle CANTLE: (la teja) arched, rear portion of the saddle tree.
    Chance wearing a choker style breast collar CHOKER:  different style of breast collar.  The term is regional to the Great Basin.  Also called 'martingale.'
    cinch CINCH: (la cincha) a leather or fabric band (or girth) that holds the saddle on the horse's back by being tightened around its body just behind the front legs. Usually it is fastened to leather straps (latigos) that hang from the rigging on each side of the saddle.
    double rigged saddle double rigged - two cinches, one forward and one (flank) behind the seat.
    single rigged saddle single rigged - one cinch which can be attached at different distances back on a saddle. 3/4, 7/8 etc.
    CONCHO: (la concha) a metal disk, often of silver, sometimes a leather rosette that secures saddle strings or used as other decoration.  Etymology is from the Spanish word "concha" meaning "shell"
    conchos ROSETTE: (la roseta) a circular design; on western stock saddles, a small leather disk with two slits for thongs or saddle strings to pass through, securing skirts to saddletree.
    crupper on a mule CRUPPER:   A leather strap that goes around an animal's tail to keep the saddle from slipping forward.   Most often used on mules
    dally26.jpg (31593 bytes) Dally:  (dale vuelta) When roping, wrapping the rope counter-clockwise around the saddle horn to hold the animal or object roped.

    In south Texas cowboys don't dally much but actually tie the lariat to the horn, called 'Hard And Fast'.

    fiodor28.jpg (32419 bytes) FIADOR KNOT:  (Sometimes called Theodore knot)  The fiador is a type of throatlatch sometimes used on a bosal hackamore.  The fiador prevents the headgear from falling off the horse's head.  The fiador knot is the knot under the jaw.  It is known as the hardest knot to tie in horse gear. 
    Here is a site link that shows How to tie the fiador knot
    Get-Down Rope:    A hair rope (mecate)attached to a bosalito (small bosal).  Used with California-style rein setup to lead or tie your horse.

    HACKAMORE: (la jaquima) The traditional jaquima hackamore consists of a headstall, noseband ( bosal )often of braided rawhide, a strap that runs behind the horses ears (hanger),and mecate tied into looped reins and a lead rope.
    The first stage of training in the California tradition of horsemanship.

    JJ in a mechanical hackamore MECHANICAL HACKAMORE:  metal version of the above with metal side pieces that work on the nerves of the nose and a chain under the jaw that works on the nerves there.  Sometimes called a broken-jaw hackamore.
    halter HALTER: (el cabestro) a headstall usually with an attached rope or strap, for holding and leading an animal.
    harness03a.jpg (96439 bytes) Harness:  Sets of straps, collars, reins, and hardware that are used on horses in order to have them pull a wagon.
    headstall15.jpg (17054 bytes) Headstall:   Straps that go over a horse's head which, together with a bit and reins, form the bridle. There are many different styles.
    quick release hobbles HOBBLES: (manellos) straps or a piece of rope placed around a horse's legs to keep it from wandering off.
    "mule hide" wrapped saddle horn HORN: (la cabezal) the projection, often bent forward, above the pommel used for dallying a rope.  Different style horns are regional.  Different style horns are used for cutting and roping.
    SLICK HORN: in the California and Great Basin traditions, saddle horns are not wrapped with rubber or any other material that causes the rope to grab the horn.  This allows the rope to slide when dallied and is thought to be gentler on both horse and cattle.  This is one reason for the longer length ropes used in this area.  These horns can be wrapped with mule hide.
    wpe8.jpg (18074 bytes) KEEPER:  piece of leather attached to the saddle through which loose equipment or saddle parts can be hooked.
      KIAKS :  pack boxes made of rawhide laced on wooden frames. 
    double rigged saddle LATIGOS:  leather straps to which the cinch is secured, each suspended from a latigo ring (or rigging ring), one on the near or on-side (el latigo) and sometimes one on the off-side of a single rigged saddle; on a double-rigged saddle there is also a second (flank) cinch.  Some saddles have an off-side billet to secure the cinch instead of a second latigo. 
    The terms 'Cinch Strap' and 'off-side cinch strap' are used in south Texas, There, the leather strings used to tie stuff like ropes or a bedroll on with, are called 'latigos.'
    martingale or training fork MARTINGALE: (la gammara) strap from the (front) cinch to the bridle, or ending in two rings through which the reins pass, to help control the horse.  Also used to refer to the "choker" style breast collar.
    horsehair mccarty  McCarty :  Macardy (el mecate) A rope, often of braided or twisted horsehair, that is used as a combination rein and lead rope.
    McClellan Cavalry saddle McClellan: style of military issue light-weight saddle used by the U.S. Cavalry.
    MOCHILA:  Mail pouch the Pony Express riders carried on their saddles to hold the mail.
    Morral or nose bag

    MORRAL:  A feed bag for a horse that fits over its nose.  Also called a nose bag.  It is a handy method of feed a horse grain or pellets.  Little feed is wasted and one animal cannot eat another's ration.

    nightlatch NIGHT LATCH Safety strap attached to the saddle for the rider to hold on to in order to stay on a contrary horse.
    Pannier PANNIER: a basket, bag, box, or similar container, used in pairs either slung over the back of a horse, mule, or other beast of burden or hung on a packsaddle to carry goods.
    sawbuck style pack saddle SAWBUCK PACKSADDLE: (la albarda) (juste) simple wooden framework with crossed ends placed on animal's back to carry loads.
    Decker pack saddle DECKER PACKSADDLE :  different style pack saddle with metal rings to support the load. 
    Decker style pack saddle with metal arches rather than rings The pack saddle pictured on the left is made by Tom Padgitt, Waco, Texas and has metal arches with "horns" for tying, rather than traditional rings.

    RAWHIDE:   The hide of a cow, stretched, dried, and scraped, that can be braided and made into gear such as reins and ropes.  Very strong.  The cowboy in the photos is cutting strips of rawhide from a big circle of it.  The strips then can be braided into gear.
    reins REINS: (las riendas) strap or cord (in pairs) that runs from the bridle bit around the horse's neck, to be held and manipulated by the rider.  These straps manipulate the bit and apply pressure on a horses mouth and neck in order to steer the animal. 
    Reins are of two general types, open (split) and closed.  Texas cowboys prefer open reins.  One advantage of that type is that they are not joined together, so that if a rider is thrown, he is not in danger of becoming entangled. 
    calif06.jpg (26036 bytes) Ropers and buckaroos are partial to closed reins.  Closed reins are attached to each other. 

    California style reins often have a long flexible quirt called a "romal" attached.

    ROMAL :  a quirt or whip attached to a set of California style reins.
    showing saddle rigging with latigo centerfired RIGGING RING: (la argolla) latigo ring.
    ROPES:     Extensive look at different type of ropes given on the Personal Gear Page
    buckaroo saddle SADDLE: (la silla) (Also called a "wood.") seat type device set on an animal to facilitate riding it.  Different styles are used in different parts of the country and for different uses. 
    the pommel is the front arched portion of a saddle POMMEL: (la campana) forward, arched portion of saddletree.
    SWELLS: bulging shoulders of the saddle pommel
    FORK: (el fuste) saddletree, bows of saddletree.
    GULLET: (el interior del arzon) inside of the pommel or the front edge of the forward arch of the saddle.
    pad04.jpg (27727 bytes)

    blanket35.jpg (41247 bytes)

    SADDLE BLANKET OR PAD: (el cojin, el baste) heavy blanket or pad  placed under the saddle to protect it from dirt and to help conform the saddle to the animal's back.
    saddle bags SADDLE BAGS: (las cantinas) (bolsas) large leather or canvas piece with attached pockets, placed over the rear extensions of the Read More
  • Jim Rogers Collection +

    The Museum's major benefactors, Jim Rogers and his wife, Beverly,  provided the Board of Directors and the community with the financial resources to build our Museum. In addtion, Mr. Rogers' has contributed many items from his personal collection for display including a number of  silver parade and collectible saddles. These are reviewed on this page and noted links below.

    Ted Flowers

    One of the most prolific parade saddle makers, Ted Flowers began making saddles during the 1940's in his shop in Anderson, Indiana. He then moved his shop to Alexandria, Indiana. It is during the 1950's through 1960's that Flowers produced most of his saddles. It is believed he stopped producing saddles altogether in the mid-seventies.
    Flowers saddles were very popular for use in parade horse classes at shows such as Saddlebred, Morgan, & Palomino. While he did make very few saddles with sterling silver and gold plating, he was best known for using mostly German Silver, Monel, (or mixtures of these two materials), nickel, and aluminum on his parade saddles. The German silver and Monel do not require near as much labor to keep polished as does sterling silver and was much more affordable. Flowers also used brass and gold plating for decorative accents on his conchos. Some of his lower end saddles and accessories had stainless steel conchos.

    These saddles weigh approximately 75 pounds including the serapes, breast collar, headstall, etc., and while the Bohlin and Keystone and other sterling silver parade saddle outfits often weigh in excess of 125 lbs. to 150 lbs. When a saddle was ordered from Ted Flowers "Spot Shop" each piece was ordered and priced individually (saddle, bridle, tapaderos, breast collar etc). The fancier sets also offered a choice of indianhead or horsehead decorations. Many customers wanted their  saddle to be unique so there is tremendous variation in the remaining saddles you see today.

    Flowers_2_72_dpi Flowers_3_Side_72dpi Flowersrear Flowers_3_Side_72dpi



    Other Pages of Collection:

       GT Rowell
       Montie Montana
       Jack Wescott
       Horse Head, Diamond Motif

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  • Rogers Collection #3 Paisley Saddle +

    Paisley Leather with Silver Flower Studs

    Paisley_Left_72dpi Paisley_Saddle_top_72_dpi Paisley_Right_72_dpi

    Other Pages of Collection:

       GT Rowell
       Montie Montana
       Jack Wescott
       Horse Head, Diamond Motif

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  • Rogers Collection #5 Gunsmoke Saddle +

    Gunsmoke was an American radio and television Western drama series created by director Norman MacDonnell and writer John Meston. The stories take place in and around Dodge City, Kansas, during the settlement of the American West.  The saddle below..............

    Gunsmoke_LS_72_dpi Gunsmoke_RS_72_dpi
    Gunsmoke_Front_72_dpi Gunsmoke_Back_72_dpi

    Gunsmoke, America's longest running television Western, aired on CBS from 1955-75. In 1956, its second season on the air, the series entered the list of top ten programs on U.S. television and moved quickly to number one. It remained in that position until 1961 and in the top twenty until 1964. Following a shift in its programming time in 1967, Gunsmoke returned to prominence within the top twenty for the next seven years, dropping out only in its final year. From 1987 to the present there have been four Gunsmoke "reunion" programs, presented as two-hour, made-for-television movies.

    This exceptionally successful program is often referred to as the medium's first "adult Western." The term is used to indicate differences between the Hollywood "B" Westerns and versions of the genre designed for the small screen in the 1950s and 1960s. Without recourse to panoramic vistas, thundering herds of cattle, and massed charges by "Indians" or the United States Cavalry, the television Western often concentrated on character relationships and tense psychological drama. Gunsmoke set the style and tone for many of these shows.

    Set in Dodge City, Kansas in the 1890s, the series focused on the character of United States Marshall, Matt Dillon, played by James Arness. The part was designed for John Wayne, who chose not to complicate his still-successful film career with commitment to a long-term television contract. Wayne, who appeared on air to introduce the first episode of Gunsmoke, suggested the younger actor for the lead role. The tall, rugged-looking Arness, who until this time had played minor film roles, became synonymous with his character during the next twenty years.

    Surrounding Dillon were characters who became one of television's best known "work-place families." Kitty Russell (Amanda Blake) owned and managed a local saloon, The Longbranch, and over the years developed a deep friendship with Dillon that always seemed to border on something more intimate. Doc Adams (Milburn Stone) represented science, rationality and crusty wisdom. His medical skills were never questioned and he patched up everyone on the show, often more than once. Dennis Weaver portrayed tender-hearted and gullible Chester Goode, Deputy Marshall. Chester's openness and honesty were often played against frontier villainy, and his loyalty to Dillon was unquestionable. When Weaver left the show in 1964 he was replaced by Ken Curtis as Festus Hagen, a character equally adept at providing humor in the often grim world of Dodge and a foil to the taciturn and sometimes obsessive professionalism of Dillon. Burt Reynolds appeared on Gunsmoke from 1962-65 in the role of Quint Asper.

    While Gunsmoke had its share of shoot-outs, bank robberies, cattle rustlings, and the like, the great strength of the program was the ongoing exploration of life in this community, with these people, in this place, at this time. In Gunsmoke, Dodge City stands as an outpost of civilization, the edge of America at the end of a century. It is one of the central images of the Western in any of its media creations--a small town, a group of professionals, perhaps a school and a church, surrounded by the dangers of the frontier, its values of peace, harmony, and justice always under threat from untamed forces. Such a setting becomes a magnified experiment for the exploration of fundamental ideas about American culture and society. Issues faced by the characters and community in Gunsmoke ranged from questions of legitimate violence to the treatment of minority groups, from the meaning of family to the power of religious commitment. Even topics drawn from American life in the 1950s and 1960s were examined in this setting. The historical frame of the Western, and television's reliance on well-known, continuing characters allowed a sense of distance and gave producers the freedom to treat almost any topic.

    The dramatic formula for the series, particularly in later years, was simple. Some type of "outsider"--a family separated from a wagon train, an ex-Confederate officer, a wandering theatre troupe--entered the world of the regular characters. With the outsiders came conflict. With the conflict came the need for decision and action. If violence was called for, it was applied reluctantly. If compassion was the answer, it was available. Often, no solution so simple solved the problems. Many sides of the same issue could be presented, especially when moral problems, not action and adventure, were the central concerns. In such cases Gunsmoke often ended in ambiguity, requiring the ideas and issues to be pondered by viewers. As the series progressed into its last seasons, it became highly self-conscious of its own history. Characters explored their own motivations with some frequency, and memories became plot devices.

    In the history of American popular culture, Gunsmoke has claimed a position of prominence. Innovative within traditional trappings, it testified to the breadth and resilience of the Western genre and to television's ability to interweave character, idea and action into narratives that could attract and compel audiences for decades.

    -Horace Newcomb_- http://www.museum.tv/eotvsection.php?entrycode=gunsmoke

    Other Pages of Collection:
    GT Rowell
       Montie Montana
       Jack Wescott
       Horse Head, Diamond Motif

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  • Western Saddles - dummy +

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  • Western Saddles - Background +

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  • Western Saddles - Shop +

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    Contact Info

    The Museum of Western Film History
    701 S. Main Street
    Lone Pine, CA 93545