Eddy Hulbert, Silversmith: Artistry in Dryhead Country, Montana

E. Helene Sage

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Eddy Hulbert (1898-1960) was an accomplished, self-taught blacksmith and silversmith whose output is highly sought after by today's collector of Western antiquaria. Known for his spurs, bits, belt buckles, and jewelry, his style is distinctive and bold, and his designs unique. Much of Hulbert's work was commissioned by local ranchers and families in the Dryhead, Montana area, where he made his home and left an indelible mark on silverwork from this interesting part of the country. In four chapters, Hulbert's work has been grouped according to the items that he designed, fashioned, and embellished: spurs, bits and bridles, belts and belt buckles, and jewelry. The last chapter introduces the work of two of Hulbert's contemporaries, Ed Klapmeier and C.E. O'Such, of Miles City, Montana. Rare photographs of individuals who were Hulbert's customers add to the local color and flavor of his time. This book is ideal for those interested in silversmithing and/or jewelry making, and for those admirers of America's Great West.

Size: 9 1/8" x 8 1/8" | 226 color & b/w photos | 144 pp
ISBN13: 9780764347269

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Born in Philadelphia, Helene started riding at the age of two and was in her first show a year later. Horses, whether living, carousel, ceramic, lead, or paper, have always been a part of her life. Her parents purchased Spring Hill Farm, in Berks County, Pennsylvania, in 1959, and Helene instructed, trained, and showed throughout the Northeast from that location until the late 1960s. A graduate of Moravian Preparatory School and Mount Holyoke College, where she majored in Biochemistry with a minor in Latin, Helene traveled progressively westward until she reached Salt Lake City, and eventually, Seattle.While earning a Ph.D. in Biological Sciences at the University of Utah, Helene established a hunter-oriented stable in Draper, Utah and exhibited in horse shows throughout the Intermountain West and California. She also established a stable at White Sands Missile Range (New Mexico) and rode as a double for Paramount Studios in Westerns such as Bonanza.A productive career in cell and molecular biology at the University of Washington created a major hiatus in Helene’s riding, but the discoveries, travels, and excitement of doing science more than compensated for the departure from things equine. During her tenure as Professor of Biological Structure and Member and Chair of the Hope Heart Program at the Seattle-based Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason, Helene began to research and collect Western Americana including Ranching and Native American horse gear. The collection now resides in her home near Santa Fe, New Mexico.An author of over 350 published scientific articles, Western-related commentaries, and catalogs and books that include Bridle Rosettes: Two Centuries of Equine Adornment and Native American Horse Gear, Helene’s latest book deals with the silversmith Eddy Hulbert (1898-1960), who produced distinctive and functionally beautiful bits, spurs, belt buckles, and jewelry while a resident in the Dryhead Country of Montana. Hulbert’s original designs, coupled with his enigmatic life, have created a highly collective group of artistry that has the true ring of the Old West.