2,000 Years of the Necktie
Bolo: The Tie That Won the West

by David Johnson

NECKTIES
THROUGH THE AGES
 
Introduction

210 B.C.
China's First Emperor

113 A.D.
Did Romans Wear Ties?

17th Century
Croatian Cravats for the King of France

Cravats Go to England

Real Men Wear Lace

18th Century
Cowboy Bandannas from India

Sailing the Seven Seas

19th Century
Business Suit Takes Shape

Cambridge & Oxford's School Ties

Ties Fit for Officers and Gentlemen

Bow Ties Center Stage

A Tie Singing Dixie

Lord Byron's Legacy

Women Tie the Knot, Too!

20th Century
Paris Presents Designer Ties

Celebrities & Rock Stars

Ascots Cross Finish Line

Bolo: The Tie That Won the West

Turtleneck: The Anti-Tie

 
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The bolo, or bola, tie is so common in the west today that many people are surprised to find that it is relatively new.

In the late 1940s, a silversmith named Victor Cedarstaff went riding with friends in the Bradshaw Mountains outside Wickenburg, Arizona. When the wind blew his hat off, Cedarstaff removed the hatband, which had a silver buckle he did not want to lose, and put it around his neck.

When his friends complemented him on the new apparel, Cedarstaff returned home, and wove a leather string. He added silver balls to the ends and ran it through a turquoise buckle.

Cedarstaff later patented the new neckwear, which was called the bolo because it resembled the lengths of rope used by Argentine gauchos to catch game or cattle.

Arizona makes it official

Now mass-produced, bolos are usually made of leather cord, with a silver or turquoise buckle. They are common throughout the west and are often worn for business. In 1971 Arizona legislature named the bolo the official state neckwear.



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