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Hard cover, $100

PACKING IRON, Gunleather of the Frontier West
By Richard C. Rattenbury


Western gunleather is an icon of American frontier lore. This book celebrates the artistry and innovation of the craftsmen who designed the gun rigs of the old time cowboys, troopers, lawmen and Hollywood heroes. This unique art form is fully described and richly illustrated with over 400 exciting color photographs and rare historic images. This is a tremendous reference for leather craftsmen and cowboy action shooters. With 216 pages.

The Old West was won with a multitude of firearms, from single shot pistols and Colt revolvers to Plains rifles and Winchester repeaters. The variety of military and civilian gunleather that housed this romantic array of weaponry is colorfully illustrated and explained in PACKING IRON.

PACKING IRON completely and accurately describes the holsters, gunbelts, saddle scabbards and other colorful equipment which made the carrying and wearing of firearms practical. “Gun rigs” of the old time Westerners have long been recognized as collectible objects, and in recent years, greatly appreciated in interest and value.

PACKING IRON is a handsomely designed, large format, 216-page portrait of this important facet of our frontier heritage. The extensive, entertaining, fact-filled text provides a fascinating history of the evolution and style of western gunleather. In the pages of PACKING IRON you will discover gunleather produced by historic government arsenals along with famed frontier craftsman like Collins, Meanea, Gallatin and Heiser. PACKING IRON is a book no student or collector of Western Americana should be without.

RICHARD C. RATTENBURY’s enthusiasm for western gunleather was sparked in 1989 while doing research for an exhibition at the National Cowboy Hall of Fame and Western Heritage Center in Oklahoma City, where he is curator of history. A log-time student of firearms and western material culture, Rattenbury formerly held curatorial positions with the Winchester Museum at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center, Cody, Wyoming, and with the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum, Canyon, Texas. Over the past fifteen years he has authored three exhibition catalogs on firearms history and technology, as well as more than thirty articles and monographs for such publications as Man at Arms, American West, History News, Military Images and Persimmon Hill. Rattenbury resides with his wife, Suzette, in Edmond, Oklahoma.

Look Inside: Cover | Page 1 | Page 2 | Page 3 | Page 4