A. Stelzig Saddle Company History


Stelzig Saddlery Company 1870 - 1992
Stelzig's of Texas 1992 - 2003
Stelzig Ranch 2004 - 2010
Houston, Texas

In 1843, the Anton Stelzig Sr. (b. 1824, d. February 5, 1895) and his wife, Theresa Link, (b. 1827, d. unknown) who emigrated from Austria and arrived in the United States with Anton Stelzig Sr. already possessing a background in Saddlery and Harness Leather Work. In the very beginning, Anton Stelzig Sr. and Theresa Link Stelzig settled in Galveston, Texas, which was their base of operation as they traveled by ox drawn cart from ranch to ranch in the Galveston area offering on site Leather Work. Over the course of their marriage, Anton Stelzig Sr. and his wife Theresa Link Stelzig had 7 children: Anton Stelzig Jr. (b. June 29, 1849, d. August 25, 1893), Franz Stelzig (b. 1852), Joseph Stelzig (b. 1856), Adolph Stelzig (b. 1858), Pauline Stelzig (b. 1861), Amelia Stelzig (b. 1866) and Anna Stelzig (b. 1867). All were born in Harris County Texas. Anton Stelzig Jr. was the first American born in the Anton Stelzig Sr. family and after spending a great deal of his youth on the Conestoga Wagon with his parents traveling, Anton Stelzig Jr. was learning the trade his father. Anton Stelzig Sr. was offering their Leather Work Services to the many local Texas Ranchers.

It was in 1870 that the Anton Stelzig Jr. setup his first Saddle Shop close to the U.S. Calvary Fort in the Richmond – Rosenberg area outside of Houston Texas. Anton Stelzig Jr. was married in 1873 to Elizabeth Helt whom he had met while living and working in the Richmond – Rosenberg area of Texas near Houston. Anton Stelzig Jr. and his wife had 9 Children: Maria Pauline Stelzig (b. 1873, d. unknown), Clara Louise Stelzig (b. July 22, 1874, d. May 26, 1925), Anton Stelzig III (b. Jan 20, 1876, d. unknown), Charley Stelzig (b. November 20, 1877, d. December 19, 1951), Ida Stelzig (b. September 18, 1879, d. September 1969), Bertha Elizabeth Stelzig (b. September 18, 1884, d. December 18, 1975), Frank Joseph Stelzig (b. December 12, 1886, d. April 30, 1967), Helena Stelzig (b. June 16, 1889. d. May 4, 1985), Henry Leo Stelzig (b. December 19, 1892, d. April 7, 1978).

After a great deal of success and building a reputation as a superior Saddle Maker and Leather Worker, Anton Stelzig Jr. moved his business to the Brenham, Texas in 1876 where The A. Stelzig Company remained until 1887. It was in 1887 that Anton Stelzig Jr. relocated his business The A. Stelzig Company to "The Settlement on the Bayou" or Houston, Texas where he opened his original location at 209 Main Street. His advertising sign read "Dependable Leather Goods". Between 1887, when Anton Stelzig Jr. moved his Leather Working Business to Houston, and 1893, when he died at a young age of 44 years old, the business was left to be ran by Anton Stelzig Jr. eldest son, Anton Stelzig III, whom at the time he was 17 years old. The business moved from the 209 Main Street location shortly after Anton Stelzig III starting operating the business to a building on Travis Street and in 1895, Anton Stelzig Sr. died.

The business thrived at the Travis Street location for years until a major fire destroyed the building completely with all of its contents, leaving Anton Stelzig III having to start over. This is very close to the turn of the Century, approximately 1900 and Anton Stelzig III now decides to rent space at the Baldwin's Old City Natatorium (Public Indoor Swimming Pools) on Louisiana Street as a temporary base of operation, which ultimately lasted 16 years, until World War I was started.

By 1926, The Stelzig Saddlery Company was established and the company found a more permanent location at 612 Preston Street, within a couple of blocks of their previous addresses. This location was maintained by The Stelzig Saddlery Company for 63 years until 1989. It was at this location that over the years The Stelzig Saddlery Company expanded into many lines of Western Wear, Boots, Jewelry and other Western Accoutrements other than the initial Saddlery Goods. It was Henry Leo Stelzig that maintained the business through the depression era when he sold and delivered goods as his grandfather did; although, H. Leo Stelzig worked the Race Track Epsom Downs in Houston and sold directly to the Horse Owners and Jockeys. It was between 1939 and 1978 that the Company saw a great deal of prosperity. World War II and the following years brought enough business that by 1978 The Stelzig Saddlery Company had 3 Locations with the main location at 612 Preston Street and another Located at 410 Louisiana Street. I am not sure of the address of the third location.

The downtown location was closed in 1989 and moved to an area near the Houston Galleria where The Stelzig Saddlery Company was developing a more diversified clientele serving their Western Wear needs more than Saddlery and Harness Equipment. In 2003 the Galleria Location was closed as the property where they were located was taken over by the State of Texas under the Eminent Domain Law. The Stelzig Ranch Store was opened in 2005 by the Stelzig Family and operated by Frances and Charles Stelzig at the Houston International Airport Terminal C, where the company continues operations until today and plans to expand in the future into additional airports and other venues.

Stelzig makers mark 1890s to 1926
A. Stelzig Saddlery maker mark 1890s - 1926

Stelzig makers mark 1926 to 1980s
Stelzig Saddlery maker mark 1926 - 1980s

Stelzig  Saddlery Company 1950s
Stelzig Saddlery Company (1950s) at 612 Preston Street Houston, Texas

Stelzig Saddlery Company 1890s
200 Block of Main Street Houston Texas (1890s). The A. Stelzig Saddlery is located at the second door on the left.