Culture / Out West

Don King’s Sheridan Style

From California’s Spanish-influenced Visalia to Arizona’s practical Porter, Don King melded regional saddlemaking traditions with his own meticulous flair. In the process, he carved an innovative style and a rich saddle-making legacy.

Five-petal wild roses in full bloom transcend their leather boundaries. Carved in tight, circular patterns, their leaves and stems flow one into the other in a seemingly endless, yet orderly, fashion. Skilled antiquing highlights the elaborate leatherwork, creating warmth and character. This loosely defined, oft-emulated and readily identifiable Sheridan style of saddle carving is generally attributed to Wyoming native Don King, whose firsthand experience as a horseman, and extensive knowledge of saddle-making traditions and personal innovations, have transformed a working cowboy’s most important tool-his saddle-into a work of art.

May 2007 issue of Western Horseman.

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