In 1952, Arthur A. Callister began trading wool with his father in a little shop on Redwood Road in Salt Lake City, Utah. Noticing how many customers were in need of quality tack to outfit themselves and their horses, AA Callister's Western Wear and Tack was born! Over 50 years and many satisfied customers we are still a family owned tack shop still located on the original site. We are proud to represent the traditions and lifestyles that made the West famous. We are also proud to feature some of the finest tack, clothing, and equipment made. Come live part of the American West today!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Cowboy Hats: The Spirit of The Old West

"The cowboy hat is the symbol of the American cowboy and the symbol of America. It is uniquely American."- David R. Stoecklein.

As you will come to find out from reading the article you will soon discover that it is merely a brief history on one of the worlds most famous and beloved styles of hats, the American cowboy hat. the cowboy hat or western style hat emerged on the scene some 200 years after Spain had brought the *sombrero* to America.

*Sombrero - a traditional Spanish style of head gear worn by the
"vaqueros" it hat a wider brim with usually a pointy-tall crown
with normally three to four dimples. They are usually highly
decorated. rich in color.

At this time Americans moving west wore sailors hat, top hats and derbies. Anything they could
protect themselves from the elements. Until, one day a Philadelphia hat makers son by the name of John B. Stetson created a theatrical styled hat out of necessity. The felt was made by the age old tradition of matting the under coat of animals by kneading the hairs, then boiling them then repeating the process over and over all the while thinning out the felt , when the water dried it became stronger . John later sold the ridiculous hat to a frontiersman for five dollars, a large amount at the time. When he returned to Philly he began immediately filling orders!! And Stetson Hats were born.

Old Western styles - The very first western style hat was called the Boss of The Plains which is still made by stetson today.
Others Include the Gus, Tom Mix, center fire, packer, hop-along,
Russell, open, mule kicks, campaign, cavalry, Montana peak, and
slope, the list goes on and on! Many companies make these styles
like, Stetson, Resistol, and Serratelli.

Now, as time goes on the cowboy hats popularity grows and more and more styles continue to compile. The following is just a brief description on a select few styles:

Classic cattleman - Usually a standard four inch brim with a 4
and 5/8" crown it will have three elongated dimples on the crown
which run parallel. this style is what most people think of when
they think of a cowboy hat.This particular family of hats also
include the rancher styles which have a taller crown, the cutters
that hat a shorter crown and most show styles.

Rough stock - The most popular rodeo style currently are ones
with a square top and wider brim the trend is 4 1/4"- 5"* *brim
depending on you preference. The flange ( style of the brim) is
usually squared up rather wide, on average about 7" apart.And
many have a bound edge which is colored ribbon sewed around the edge.
* *Buckaroo-* The most popular buckaroo style would have to be the
Nevada or the Vaquero style, it traditionally has a 4" brim with a
4" crown completely flat for most but some have a curled side or
pencil role; the crown is a telescopic crown which at a birds eye
view looks like a lens. Others include cross overs from the old
west styles. Some have a laced edge or filigree work .*

This is just the beginning of the list!! "May the cowboy hat live on forever.... wear it with pride, for it is the symbol of one of the most respected professions in the world." - David R. Stoecklein.

Friday, April 10, 2009

"Ten gallon" Hat

The ten gallon hat…. How, ever did this term come about? Although there are many theories on how this description of a cowboy hat came about none the less it has been used for decades, approximately since 1925 to be a little more accurate.

One interesting theory is, the tight weave of the fibers in a felt hat most noted ably Stetson hats are matted enough to make for a make shift bucket if need be. In earlier as well as recent advertisements of Stetson hats depict a man using his hat as a bucket for water for his horse; this painting was called “The Last Drop From His Stetson” it was painted by a south western artist by the name of Lon Megargee. Interesting enough this theory does not hold water, an fabric with liquid in it will eventually leak; and Stetson claims that a hat with a large crown can only hold three quarts (that less than one gallon)!

Perhaps it came from an old war story, in 1889 the USS Maine battleship sunk in the Havana bay. Some fourteen years later when they raised the ship back up in 1912 though the mud and water they found a Stetson hat, it was then carefully dried and renovated. Today the hat looks almost as good as new, so new publicity for Stetson arose thus feeding the fire to this urban myth.

Finally the last theory and most probable would have to be, that the term "ten gallon" is possibly a corruption of the Spanish term "galón", or galloon, a type of narrow braided trimming around the crown, possibly a style adapted by the vaqueros. "The term ten-gallon did not originally refer to the holding capacity of the hat, but to the width of a Mexican sombrero hatband, and is more closely related to this unit of measurement by the Spanish than to the water-holding capacity of a Stetson." The term came into use about 1925. Thus, the term "ten-gallon" did not originally refer to the holding capacity of the hat, but to the width of a Spanish hatband. When Texas cowboys misunderstood the word "galón" for "gallon", the popular, though incorrect, legend may have been born.


Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Cowboy Hat Etiquette

Cowboy hat etiquette?! Yes it is true, even though most of us western folk are a messy bunch; we still have rules. And today we are talking about the etiquette of western styled hats.
First of all you need to learn how to take off the hat in the first place. The most common practice would have to be grabbing the crown and pulling it off which is fine; not good, but fine (I know that I am guilty). Over time the felt where you have been handling it will become dirty and weak. But, the proper way to take off your hat would have to be by gently grabbing the hat at the base of the crown with two hands; one in the front and one in the back, and simply remove. Next, you place the hat crown down. So you do not lose the shape of the brim.
Classic examples of what NOT to do:
• Do not roughly handle the brim.
• Do not leave your hat in the car.
• Do not leave your hat in direct sunlight.
• It is considered bad luck to place your cowboy hat brim on the bed.
The proper things to do:
• When looking for a place to set your hat, the first and best place would have to be… on your head!
• You should always remove cover for our nation’s flag/ national anthem; when entering an enclosed area such as a home, this does not include barns or bars; just where people reside. Except for, a church or court house.
• As a gentleman it is always a good idea to remove ones hat the first time you meet a lady, and a gentleman tips the hat towards her.
Well there you go, that’s the scoop on the do’s and don’ts in cowboy hat etiquette.