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Claudio Janni Collection

Identifier: 2002-209

Scope and Contents

The photographic content of the collection consists of three black-and-white photographs of Claudio Janni in addition to fifteen 35mm Kodachrome color slides from the 1950s of some boot designs. Advertising material for Lucchese Boot Company includes a brochure from 1978, and advertising cards and a catalog, both from 1990. The book A Lifetime With Boots (1983) written by Sam Lucchese with Tad S. Mizwa has been cataloged and included in the Library Catalog.

The most unique piece of this collection is the Sam Lucchese Pattern Book of designs created by Lucchese during the 1920 to 1970s. The book was in such poor condition upon receipt that it was sent to a conservator for repairs and conservation needs. Excerpts from the conservator’s report are included in the Processing section of the Guide. The newly conserved pattern book is labeled as box 2, while the original binder and pages are stored in box 3. The 105 35mm color slides taken by the conservator document both before and after conservation efforts for each page of the Lucchese Pattern Book and are stored in box 1. The images are not yet on the Image Archive Database but can be viewed in person at the Dickinson Research Center.

Director Chuck Rand conducted a nearly hour-long interview with Claudio Janni on November 18, 2002, in the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum’s Education Department classroom. The video was recorded by Kris Nelson. The interview was originally recorded on a DVCAM videotape, and dub copies on VHS and Betacam-SP have been made. The interview can be viewed by researchers in the Dickinson Research Center by appointment.


  • Creation: circa 1920-circa 1990


Conditions Governing Access

The Claudio Janni Collection has no restrictions and is available for research. If you are interested in researching the materials, please contact the Dickinson Research Center to make an appointment.

Conditions Governing Use

The Claudio Janni Collection is the property of the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. Materials, even if owned by the NCWHM, may be protected under third party copyright. It is the patron’s responsibility to research and secure any such additional copyright and pay any required fees or royalties. It is not the intention of the NCWHM to impede upon any third party rights, and the NCWHM cannot be held responsible if the patron is involved in legal action due to violation of third party copyright claims.

Biographical / Historical

Two brief biographies for Sam Lucchese and Claudio Janni are included below.

Sam Lucchese Sam Lucchese, bootmaker and real estate broker, was born in Sicily in 1868. He immigrated to the United States in 1883 with his brothers. Upon his arrival in San Antonio, Texas, he and his brothers opened the Lucchese Boot and Shoe Factory. Lucchese took a very practical approach to the making of boots, stressing quality, quantity, and cost efficiency. He was always eager to implement the newest machines and techniques for increasing production, according to Samuel J. Lucchese, his grandson. In 1923 Sam Lucchese suffered a stroke that forced him to turn over the daily management of the boot factory to his son, Cosimo. In 1929 he suffered yet another stroke at his home and died. He was survived by his wife, Frances (Battaglia), and seven children, including a daughter, Josephine Lucchese, who was a nationally known opera singer. The bootmaking business continued for two more generations until his grandson sold the Lucchese Boot Company in 1970 to Blue Bell, Incorporated, the parent company of Wrangler.

Claudio Janni Claudio Janni is from Rome, Italy, where he spent most of his life. It was in 1963 when he met his future wife, Arleen, that Claudio found himself moving to New York after they married. He worked at the Parsons School of Design for the fashion industry, which led to a job in Nashville in the 1970s where Janni worked with Lucchese Boots and Wrangler Boots. In 1981 he moved to Arlington, Texas, to work with Justin Boots. While working for Lucchese, Janni met actors such as John Wayne, Maureen O’Hara, Mickey Mantle, and Dale Robertson. After retiring from boot design and fashion, Janni pursued oil painting. He has studied at Conte Verde School of Art and attended the Nuova Italia Art Institute. His paintings are described as being reflective of the true color of Italy. While he has extensively traveled throughout Italy, his paintings focus on Venice, Tuscany, and the Amalfi Coast, especially the canals of Venice. Janni has had exhibitions in Rome, Venice, and Florence, including galleries in the United States.


1.25 Linear Feet (3 document boxes)

Language of Materials



The Claudio Janni Collection features the Sam Lucchese boot pattern book which is an exceptional work of art with pages of designs for boot covers and patterns. Accompanying the book are several photographs, advertising cards, two catalogs, and 35mm slides of boot designs.

Processing Information

The Claudio Janni Collection was purchased by the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in 2002 from Claudio Janni.

Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the NCWHM Special Collections at Dickinson Research Center Repository

1700 Northeast 63rd Street
Oklahoma City Oklahoma 73111 United States