Like all pieces of antiques, artwork, pottery or furniture the makers of antique spurs also left their “makers mark” on each of the item they made. As the spur was made from metals such as iron, silver and later aluminum, the mark was physically stamped to the spur with a hammer and chisel or by hitting the spurs with a pre-made stamp.
There are several reasons why the spur makers used to do this. One was to identify their own products as the items were rarely stamped or marked with a serial number. Also, it was common for custom cowboy spurs to be made at the request and design of the wearer and therefore some of the spurs made would not be the same each time. Different sizes, widths and patterns were used when making the custom made spurs and therefore it was important for the maker to know which were made by his own hand. The markings also help us understand the value and origin of the items we might buy at auction today.
The most common marking would be the initials or the name of the maker. Spurs made by the Crockett Spurs company were marked either with the name CROCKETT or later, once the company had been bought by a larger company owned by Jim Renalde, they were marked with the initials CR for “Crockett Renalde”.
Another of the larger and more famous makers of cowboy spurs, North & Judd used a symbol to mark their spurs and other cowboy gear. The North & Judd Anchor mark has now become a mark of distinction throughout the area of western blacksmithing items and horse tack and is a recognized mark of quality and for us today, a mark of the value and authenticity of a genuine western American antique.