Handsome miniature leather cowboy boots hand-made by Clyde Barrow while incarcerated as a gift for his mother, measuring 4.5″ tall and 3.5″ long, with a well-crafted "Mom" appliqué on the front, and heart-shaped cutouts on the sides and back. The smooth black leather boots are finely sewn and feature a burgundy "Mom" on white panels on the front, red heart and white diamond inlays on the sides, and large white hearts on the backs. In very good to fine condition, with wear and fraying to the rear of one boot.
Accompanied by two ALSs by Clyde's sister Marie Barrow to David Gainsborough Roberts concerning these boots, both dated 1996. The first, in part: "That last tape was nothing but lies. Clyde didn't know Ted Hinton, and he never come to our home looking for him. I never met Ted Hinton until after Clyde's death…Glad you asked about boots before I let Library have them…if you want boots will be glad to let you have them for your price." The second, in part: "Clyde either made them boots in 1931 or 32 not real sure which year. We all called her Mama & Papa guess it was shorter to put Mom. I also have a belt he made for me." Also includes some correspondence from other collectors related to the boots, and copies of news articles depicting them.
Both Clyde and his brother Buck were skilled amateur craftsmen, and while in prison they engaged in jewelry-making, leathercraft, and woodworking. Among some of the other items known to have been made by Clyde while jailed are a beaded necklace given to his sister Marie, a hand-tooled leather belt with metal studs and blue and red stones, and his own polished silver belt buckle with a five-pointed Texas Star in the center surrounded by abalone shell. All exhibit similar styles of artistic approach and the same level of high-quality, though unrefined, craftsmanship. These marvelous miniature Western boots, crafted with love as a token of appreciation for his mother Cumie, are truly spectacular in both their craftsmanship and Barrow family provenance. From the collection of David Gainsborough-Roberts.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.