The whole story begins in Uvalde, Texas in 1883, where a
man by the name of A.M. Rice started A. M. Rice saddlery.
Meanwhile, George C. Slade was learning the trade of
saddle making from Tom Padgett Saddlery in Waco, Texas,
where he worked his way up to head saddle maker.
George's son, Will A. Slade, learned the trade under his
father at Padgett in Waco, until in 1929 Will decided to return
to Uvalde and bought A.M. Rice's saddle shop.
One of Will Slade's early customers was an old friend and
schoolmate by the name of Will Rogers. Other notable
characters to go down in the Slade hall of fame include
former governor Dolph Briscoe, General George Patton, and
Also in 1929, Will Slade's daughter, Ruth, married Louis
Paradeaux; Louis worked in the saddle shop and passed the
trade down to his son, Will G. Paradeaux.
In 1982, Will Paradeaux sold his interest in the business to
join the ministry, but regained the shop after it went bankrupt
under the new management.
Today, he can be found working alongside
his son, Will Slade Paradeaux, at the Luling, Texas location.
Will Slade Paradeaux is the fifth generation of leather
craftsman and saddle maker for Slade Saddle Shop.
Will Paradeaux's son and fifth generation saddle maker.
Most of the artistic tooling at Slade Saddle Shop is done by Slade. Slade also makes most of the unusual items found at the shop such as leather ties, purses, and furniture. Making a custom bible cover in this photo.
Slade Saddle Shop. You can find him making new saddles and lots of custom work, or managing to stay busy talking with customers.
Most custom saddles, billfolds, and leggings are made by Will.
Shown here modeling a pair of custom made elk chaps.