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Sunday, May 15, 2011

George Lawrence Saddle Collection

UPDATE - 5/18l11  I added a link to a youtube video about the George Lawrence Company at the bottom of the post.


Nice day yesterday..., don't anyone tell Julie that I was working on saddles..., and The Blog..., instead of doing my chores !!!  You can click on these thumbnail photos and view them in a larger format.



Just don't understand WHY those horses would turn thier backs on these fine George Lawrence saddles?


From left to right..., newest to the oldest by age.




This tan saddle is the only one that has the most recent George Lawrence logo stamped on the back of the cantle.


This is what I call the Third Generation Logo..., or "script logo".  This is the only saddle I have or have seen with this logo.



That's Smokey..., with his saddle blanket on..., sitting in front of Julie's saddle.  He likes the rawhide accents added to the horn and gullet..., nice..., but not original.


"Jackson" is easily the oldest..., the first give-a-way is it is an "8-string" saddle.  Newer saddles are "6-string".  Also the square skirts and extremely "high back" cantle.  I also believe that it was an old "bear trap" design.  The rolls have been repaired and it looks to me like they may have been cut down.


I call this the First Generation Logo..., I have only seen it on the really old saddles.



Second from right is a newer design..., with a Cheyenne roll on the low back cantle, small, low rolls and what the GLC described in their catalog as a "pelican horn".  We used to call those big horns a  "Mexican roping horn" when I was a kid.


This is what I call the Second Generation Logo..., it is on all the saddles..., with the exception of "Jackson" and the tan saddle.  My research has not found any means of dating the use of the three different logos.



Second and third from left are Julie and I's saddles.  Notice the swept back rolls..., not as exagerated as the old "bear trap" design..., they were referred to as a "form fitter" design.  Not sure if George Lawrence or Hamley was the first to use that design.  My saddle is easily dated by the "wool lining" instead of the standard "sheep skin" lining that is commonly used.  During WW II sheep skin was in short supply because it was being used by the military for "boomer jackets".

Here's a link to a youtube video about saddles and the George Lawrence Company.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c-G8sH2JxnM

26 comments:

  1. I have a Lawrence saddle with a high back. The logo is like the picture of yours that says First Generation Logo. Is there any way to narrow down the age of the saddle? Thanks Ron

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  2. Hi Ron..., I don't have any definitive knowledge of when the Second Generation logo came into being. I am guessing the 20' or 30's. A loop seat and slick fork design like the one pictured on "A Couple of Real Beauties on Ebay" would indicate the it is late 1800's or very early 1900's.

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  3. Hi Scott, I have a Lawrence saddle exactly the same as the 3rd from the left. Do you know the age or value of that saddle? Attempting to sell it and I'm not sure where to start. Thanks, Shannon

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    1. Do you still have the saddle?

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  4. Sorry, it's the 3rd from the left if you're looking from behind, and 3rd from the right if looking from the front.

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    1. Hi Shannon. That saddle is from the early 40's. It's age is given away by the "wool" lining that is used instead of the "sheepskin" lining that is the standard on saddles. During WW II all the sheepskin available was being used to make "bomber jackets". But the design of the saddle..., called a "form fitter"..., with it's slightly swept back rolls was common for many years. Hamley also made saddles with a form fitter design. I haven't been able to acquire..., or view enough of the G.L. Lawrence catalogs to determine specific dates of the various models and designs they used.

      As for prices..., it is really hard to say. I acquired over half of this collection from Ebay. Just type in "Lawrence saddle" in the search box and you will see three of them for sale now. The asking prices range from $650 to $600 to $485. I checked the "completed" auctions and only one has been sold recently..., for $400. I have paid anywhere from $75 (a nothing special at a garage sale that isn't even displayed here) to $700 for one that I just had to have to send to my Dad for Christmas (third from left). I would think that your saddle if it is in good shape and near original should bring around $400..., maybe less. It isn't really old enough to be considered an antique..., and GLC made a lot of saddles in their day. I had always hoped that I could attend some of the bigger "cowboy and old west memorabilia" auctions with my Dad to see what value some of the collectors place on them. Sadly..., we never got the chance..., and since he passed away I really haven't been keeping up on the market for saddles. Hope this has been some help to you..., and thanks for viewing and commenting.

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  5. I have a GL saddle that has what you call the second generation logo. I've had it for almost 50 years and it was used when I got it. The tooling looks actually like the same tooling pattern as on the cantle picture you show with the second-generation logo on it.

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    1. Thanks for the comment..., and for checking out the blog Anonymous.

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    2. We have a third generation script logo. Do you know the dates of production for that generation?

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    3. Thanks for the comment and for checking out the blog. I haven't been able to find out the exact dates of when the logos were changed. My best guess is that the third generation logo came into use some time in the late 40's or early 50's. I believe that GLC quit saddle production in the early 50's.

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  6. Scott Do you know if the G. L. Larwrance CO. made any saddles for the U.S. Cavalry. I have an old G.L. with a high candle and high small horn with brush guards marked U.S. It has the 2'nd gen. logo
    Thanks
    Jim L.

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    1. If you watch the YouTube video, there were quite a few cavalry-type saddles pictured inside the factory. Of course I'm assuming the photos used in the video were all from the Lawrence factory.

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  7. Hey Jim..., thanks for checking out the blog and commenting. I doubt that Lawrence made saddles for the military. Here is a link to..., and quote from..., a Wiki post about the McClellen saddle.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McClellan_saddle

    "The McClellan saddle was a riding saddle designed by George B. McClellan, a career Army officer in the U.S. Army, after his tour of Europe as the member of a military commission charged with studying the latest developments in engineer and cavalry forces including field equipment. Based on his observations, McClellan proposed a design that was adopted by the Army in 1859. The McClellan saddle was a success and continued in use in various forms until the US Army's last horse cavalry and horse artillery was dismounted in World War II. Today, the McClellan saddle is used by ceremonial mounted units in the US Army. The saddle was used by several other nations, including Rhodesia and Mexico, and to a degree by the British in the Boer War."

    So..., that doesn't mean that some officer might not have decided that he preferred a Lawrence to a McClellan and purchased his own. Patton's ivory handled pistols certainly were not standard military issue !!!!

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    1. Scott
      Thanks for getting back so quick! I kinda thought that either someone added the guards down the line or that a officer had purchased it. The saddle has been in my barn for 10-20 years I forgot I had it! I learned to ride on an old McClellan a few years ago! Again thank you for the reply.

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  8. My has the script and is good condition. Just wondering about how much its worth?

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    1. Hey Corbin..., thanks for checking out the blog and commenting. Prices on these old saddles aren't near what i paid for most of mine. I am not a very smart investor I guess. I just checked 'completed" auctions for "Lawrence Saddle" on Ebay..., not much interest in them now days. I got most of mine prior to the big financial meltdown in '08 and the saddles haven't recovered like the stock market has (wish the real "cowboy economy" would recover like that !). But..., I haven't seen many of the script logo saddles around..., so they are a lot rarer and may be a bit more valuable than those older models. I doubt if you could get much more that $400-500 for it though.

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  9. I have a George Lawrence Saddle with a "Second Generation" logo. It's in very good condition. It is similar to the far right one pictured above, but it does not have the flower stamping on the cantle. I am curious as to it's value. I believe it's from the 1890's to very early 1900's. Is there anyway to confirm the year it was made and its current value?

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    1. You are probably a little early in you are a little early in your estimation..., I believe that the second generation logo started in the 20's or 30's. I think that the 1890's and early 1900's were the old "8 string" saddles and had the first generation logo. Prices are hard to determine..., check out "Lawrence Saddle" on Ebay to see what they are worth these days. I haven't been keeping up with them lately. Thanks for checking out the blog and commenting :)

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  10. Hi! I just received my great-grandfather's saddle, and it has what you refer to as the "first generation" logo. Do you know when abouts this was used? Thanks!

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    1. Well..., my best guess was answered above, "I believe that the second generation logo started in the 20's or 30's. I think that the 1890's and early 1900's were the old "8 string" saddles and had the first generation logo."

      Thanks for checking out the Blog and commenting.

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  11. Hello and thank you very much for your George Lawrence saddle pictures. I love to look at old saddles. I had a question about my George Lawrence saddle. What would be your educated guess on the year it was made. It is an 8 string saddle, rounded skirt, old tie stirrup length adjustments, single rig cinch, ( no rigging or hole for rear cinch ) 2nd gen trade mark stamp, silver on top of the horn. Thank you for your time!

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  12. One other thing I noticed is that my saddle has leather straps hanging of both sides of the pommel with a buckle on the right side strap. From what I can see in your pictures I only see that on your oldest saddle.

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  13. A couple more questions Scott, sorry to keep adding to this but I keep thinking of more questions and I would love your input. Just out of curiosity have you ever heard of an 8 string with a second gen mark? Another question is do you know what style of stirrups they came with? Mine has wood ones with metal wrapped around the outside, I don't know if they are original or not. My last question is your tan saddle for sale? I know it's a very long shot but I had to try, I love the look of that saddle!! My friend has been doing some work at the George Lawrence building in Portland. I told him to look for any old history around there.

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    1. Hey Dzirkle...., thanks for checking out the blog and commenting. I would love to see pictures of your saddle..., my email is scottr@olypen.com if you want to send me some. It looks like my earlier estimate in the comments may be a little off. I said, "I believe that the second generation logo started in the 20's or 30's. I think that the 1890's and early 1900's were the old "8 string" saddles and had the first generation logo." Your saddle seems to refute that..., so the answer to your question is, "No..., I haven't seen any 8-string saddles with a second generation logo." As for the stirrups..., my old 8-string has metal wrapped ones too..., so they are probably original. And yes..., the old one is the only saddle with the extra strap on the pommel. Not sure that I am ready to part with any of my saddles at the prices they are going for on Ebay..., but I will keep you in mind when I do. I will go through my old emails..., occasionally I will get offers from people who want to sell saddles..., I could forward them to you if you are interested.

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  14. I have a George Lawrence saddle in excellent condition. It has the George Lawrence stamp on the back of the cantle. 14 inch seat with basket stamps. I need to have an idea of value. Can send a picture if asked.

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    1. Well..., I haven't been keeping up lately..., but a quick check on Ebay has a nice one listed for $400. I tried checking the "completed" listings and there haven't been any others listed recently. Wish I could be more help..., but I couldn't do provide anything new to what I have already said in prior comments. Thanks for checking out the blog though.

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