Lucchese Boot Company

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Lucchese Bootmaker
FormerlyLucchese Bros. Boots and Shoes and Lucchese Boot Company
IndustryFootwear
FoundedSan Antonio, Texas, U.S. (1883 (1883))
FounderSalvatore "Sam" Lucchese
Headquarters,
U.S.
Key people
Salvatore Lucchese, Cosimo Lucchese, and Sam Lucchese
John Muse (Chairman)
ProductsWestern footwear, Leather goods
Websitelucchese.com

The Lucchese Bootmaker Company (/lˈksi/) is a Texas-based, American manufacturer and retailer of luxury level western-inspired footwear and cowboy boots.

History[edit]

Originally known as Lucchese Bros. Boots & Shoes, the company was founded in 1883 in San Antonio, Texas by Salvatore "Sam" Lucchese (1868–1929) and his brothers, all Italian immigrants from Sicily.[1][2] In the beginning, their primary customers were military officers in the United States Army that were stationed at Fort Sam Houston.[3] Salvatore Lucchese believed in combining quality components and craftsmanship in the boot-making process. He committed himself to investing in the latest manufacturing technology and to developing new techniques for increased boot production.

In 1923, Salvatore Lucchese suffered a stroke, consequently his son Cosimo Lucchese took leadership of the company. In 1929, Cosimo led the effort to incorporate the Lucchese Boot Company.[4]

In 1949, the company was commissioned by Acme Boots[5] to build a collection of state boots for an advertising campaign. It took the Lucchese team four years to build the entire collection. Every pair of state boots is unique and features each state's flag, capital, bird, flower and state commodity. Fewer than 25 pairs are still in existence today.

In 1960, Cosimo Lucchese died suddenly and his son Sam Lucchese became company president. Sam counted both everyday customers and celebrities among his clientele, including President Lyndon B. Johnson, who was a Lucchese customer for decades. Other celebrities who wore Lucchese included singer Bing Crosby, actor James Garner, and Zsa Zsa Gabor, who had a pair of custom-made Lucchese boots.[6][7] The late Dolph Briscoe, former Governor of the State of Texas, purchased his first pair of Lucchese boots in 1938 and his final pair in 2008.

In 1970, Lucchese Boot Company was sold to Blue Bell Overall Company, the parent company to Wrangler. Sam Lucchese died in May 1980.

In 1986, the company transferred its headquarters from San Antonio, Texas, to El Paso, Texas. Lucchese's main production facility remains there. In 1998, Blue Bell Corporation sold Lucchese to Arena Brands, a Western Apparel conglomerate that was formerly known as Hat Brands, Inc.[8] In 2012, the name was changed to Lucchese Bootmaker. The company has global operations, having created and produced products in Texas, Mexico, Italy, and Brazil, all of which are made to Lucchese guidelines and standards of quality. In 2009, the company was recognized by the State of Texas Legislature for the company's contribution to Texas history and culture by passing House Concurrent Resolution 226.[3] Four years later, in 2013, Lucchese launched a new consumer website.[9] As of December 2020, Dallas businessman John Muse is the chairman of the company.[10] Lucchese brand sponsorships include the Lucchese Polo Team.[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ William Manns, How the Cowboy Got the Boot, American Cowboy, March–April 2000, p. 52
  2. ^ Bill Harvey, Texas Cemeteries: The Resting Places of Famous, Infamous, and Just Plain Interesting Texans, University of Texas Press, 2003, p. 222 [1],
  3. ^ a b Lucchese: Our History
  4. ^ Elizabeth C. Ramírez, "Lucchese, Sam", Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fluan), accessed July 13, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
  5. ^ C. J. Hadley, Trappings of the Great Basin Buckaroo, University of Nevada Press, 2003, p. 138 [2]
  6. ^ "Western Boots with Italian Roots: The Lucchese Boot Company". 2016-12-22. Retrieved 2017-04-19.
  7. ^ "The story of Lucchese boots, a true Texas original". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved 2017-04-19.
  8. ^ Bloomberg: Arena Brands
  9. ^ Kristen Studman, From Presidents to Rock Stars: This shoe brand is the go-to choice of icons, Elle, June 14, 2014
  10. ^ Bloomberg BusinessWeek: John Muse
  11. ^ Lucchese Polo Team