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Catalog Number 2010.119.001
Description Monkey Face Tapaderos (Stirrup Covers), c. 1870-1910. Pair of tapaderos (A & B) or taps (leather saddle stirrup covers) made by Visalia Saddle Company in San Francisco. Antique finely tooled hand-sewn leather saddle stirrups called tapaderos; with leather Conchos (circular pieces) with long leather tassels. Tapaderos might come with handmade wooden stirrups but this is just a set of covers with no stirrups included. This style of tapaderos is called Monkey face tapaderos because of the 2 front leather Concho "eyes" and the elongated front resembles a monkey face. They are designed to cover and protect the rider's feet when riding through scrub brush that is common in the American Southwest and Northern Mexico.
Object Name Stirrup
Collection Three-Dimensional Collection
Title Monkey Face Tapaderos (Stirrup Covers), c. 1870-1910
Date c. 1870-1910
Creator Visalia Stock Saddle Makers, San Francisco
Role Manufacturer
Inscription Text "VISALIA STOCK SADDLE / COMPANY / SAN FRANCISCO CAL." (beneath Conch "eyes" on front)
Provenance Visalia Saddle Company, San Francisco, CA
Notes "Tapaderos (also known as taps) are covers or hoods for the front of the stirrups. Taps developed out of the mexican tradition and had very utilitarian purposes. They would:

Protect the boots from getting scratched or hung up in heavy brush and mesquite that can be quite destructive
Keep the feet warm. Some come with fleece or lambs wool liners.
Prevent the feet from turning in the stirrups or from going through the stirrups if riding in low-heeled boots such as the Mexican charros wore.
In a pinch, when the hands were occupied, be used to communicate with, or steer, the horse by slapping the horse's shoulder or neck.

Read more:"
[ 08/04/2017]

"The Visalia shop was closed in the 1890s, and the firm then moved its headquarters to 221 California Street in San Francisco. Still known as the Visalia Saddle Company, the business continued to produce the Visalia Stock Saddle for decades. The shop also did an extensive business in custom saddles and other fine work, including hand-braided riatas and jaquimas, caronals, conchas, quirts, tapaderos, chaperejos, stirrups, and harnesses."
[ 08/04/2017]
Dimensions H-12 W-7 D-9 inches
Dimension Details Measurement of single tapadero
Search Terms Cattle
Subjects Horseback riding