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Drover Western Saddles
Used by Cowboys in the 1880's

Early 1800's Saddles and Gear 1840's Past 1870

1840-1880 Drover Saddle

With the Civil War over and the advent of the cattle drives in the West, there was a change needed in the typical saddles used, thus the horned "cowboy saddle." The cowboy needed a strong saddle for breaking bronks, roping and handling the rougest cattle.

The horned saddle evolved to meet this need, thus the name "Drover" has stuck with this style. Adolphus Hope, a Texas saddle maker of the early 1830's became a standard name in cowboy saddles, thus the Drover saddle is commonly referred to as "the Hope saddle."

In the mid 1870's the western saddle sported a steel horn embedded in the pomme of the tree. The skirts or "jockeys" were lined with wool fleece. The riggings also became distinctive by having two girths in place of one. The front rigging being both draped around the shank of the horn and going over the upper part of the pommel make the "Sam stag" rig we know today. The seat in this Drover western saddle is still a flat style ride and the cantle is taller and more straight in design.

The saddles of this period are generally found with the tall fenders attached to the stirrup leathers. Most are found to have a 1/2 seat of leather in the center opening of the tree. The tooling, or decoration found on originals varied widely as did the pocketbook of each cowboy. We can deck out our modern day ride just like the western cowboy with a bit of extra cash.

Available in early skeleton rig or fully rigged with jockeys and wool underbars. A-fork, straight back cantle. Large pommel horn.

Rawhide covered tree with real rawhide thonging. Edge tooling optional. Large tapered brass rings on down-rigging assembly. Double girthed. Tree made in USA.

Western saddles sizes 14 - 18. Available in black or several shades of russet. Military rings installed on front and back of saddle for equipment hook-up. Made to fit the back of a modern horse.

The tree is our own hybred design after much research and examination of original trees and examples of early saddle maker's trade. Many extras available, call for quote. Please check the current catalog for saddle prices, and the Early Western Gear we have to offer.