Thursday, November 16, 2023


 November 16, 2023

   If there is one thing that makes me happy it is big, fat tapaderos. You know, like this.

Charlie Meadows sporting major taps

   Yes, we're talking about those stirrup guards with the parrot beak look which I have been led to believe is muy Mexicano. It must have developed late (1880s) because the earlier vaquero stirrup guards are more boxy, like this.

Classic Vaquero on horseback

      Or, maybe it's just a regional syle? Here's another image of California taps:

A Californio vaquero in the branding corral
at Santa Anita Ranch, circa 1880s

And here's Black Jack Ketchum with his own distinctive taps.

Daily Whip Out: "Black Jack's Taps"

   And, it must be said, Black Jack had a friend in Mohave County named Tap.

Tap Duncan on the Diamond Bar Ranch

   And, here's a couple more sketches showing the Spanish style and how it emigrated to the U.S.

Daily Scratchboard Whip Outs:
"Spanish Taps vs. American Taps"

   Okay, that's enough tap talk. I'm all tapped out.

“To this day, the old-time vaqueros’ everyday horse training skills have never been surpassed for their efficiency nor their sheer artistry and beauty.”

—Lee Anderson

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