Saddle - Tools of the Trade

The Oakdale Cowboy Museum is proud to present the opening of our newest exhibit, The Saddle, Tools of the Trade, on Wednesday, July 25, from 6pm-8pm. This exhibit will feature the exact tools and equipment that would have been found in a saddle shop 100 years ago and still are being used in shops today. Over the last 150 years the design of the western saddle has continually changed. These changes have mainly occurred to fulfill the various needs of the mounted stockman. The style for many of the tools of the saddle maker however, have not changed significantly since they were first designed. Many of the tools in the exhibit are over 100 years old with some predating the Civil War.

"We’ll also be integrating new technology to go along with the illustration of the tools said, Executive Director Christie Camarillo. Visitors will be able to scan a QR code with their smart phones which will connect them to a narrated YouTube video showing how most of the tools displayed in the exhibit actually work on leather."

Local saddle makers Bruce Johnson, Ryan Cope and Alan Browne from Oakdale, Ron Butler from Jamestown, Jim Kiss from Modesto and Rocke Cozzitorto from Gustine have contributed to this exhibit and will be available on opening night. "This is a great opportunity to see the tools used in saddlemaking and leather working and meeting some of the local people carrying on the tradition of this historic trade," said Bruce Johnson exhibit curator.

The exhibit will run through the end of the year. For more information visit our website at