The Wade Saddle Fabulous or Fad?

Written by Chuck Stormes This article originally appeared in Eclectic Horseman Issue No.69 About forty years ago I started hearing stories about Ray Hunt and his clinics. Usually, the account came from a wide-eyed cowboy who had witnessed twenty or thirty “colts” turned loose in a pen, saddled and ridden but with nothing on their […]

The Elements of the Saddle Part 3: The Rigging

Written by Chuck Stormes This article originally appeared in Eclectic Horseman Issue No.15 The original “saddle”, a simple cloth much like a saddle blanket, and the later pad-saddle version were held in place by a surcingle—a strap encircling horse and pad, secured by tying. The development of the saddle tree offered new possibilities for securing […]

The Elements of the Saddle Part 2: The Seat

Written by Chuck Stormes This article originally appeared in Eclectic Horseman Issue No.13 Many of the nineteenth and early twentieth century saddleries were large firms doing much of their business by mail order. Depending on their market share, they employed from twenty to two hundred workers, including harness makers, strapworkers, saddlemakers and flower stampers. The […]

One Man’s Opinion About One Man’s Opinion

Written by Chuck Stormes This article originally appeared in Eclectic Horseman Issue No.5 The Vaquero’s horse with characteristic headset rolling the cricket of a silver-mounted bit suggests the essence of California horsemanship. Unlike the Arabic ring bit, which most historians agree was introduced to North Africa and Spain with the spread of Islam in the […]