Duke's Belt Buckles

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    There are 205 replies in this Thread. The last Post () by Hondo Apache.

    • K.D. Wilson,

      A big welcome to you, to the John Wayne Message Board!

      Chilibill's right about where to get the belt buckle. Quite often, they appear on that "famous online auction site" but you have to watch pretty closely, and they usually go for a minimum of $100 (we've seen a couple sell for over $200!). Just type in "Red River D belt buckle John Wayne" in the search, and see what comes up.

      Chester :newyear:
    • I was looking on ebay and found these belt buckles, one of them about Duke. I know there are a few on this board that like belt buckles, so I thought I would give them a heads up. Take a look here.

      If this link doesn't work, just cut and past this address into your address bar.

      http://cgi.ebay.com/JOHN-WAYNE-NRA-US-SHOO...1QQcmdZViewItem

      Mark

      P.S. The links are giving me a problem, hope it is just temporary. But, in case, here's a picture of the buckles.

      Files
      "I couldn't go to sleep at night if the director didn't call 'cut'. "
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      Hi,
      The Red River D belt buckle was not made for Howard Hawks by Bohlens, the belt buckles were made in Mexico just across the border from Arizona during the making of the film. In the Bohlens ads to sell there belt buckle they say they made it but it is false. I have spoken to Howard Hawks's son and he told me the history of the buckles and they were made in Mexico. The only thing I fond out is that John Wayne's Red River D belt buckle was stolen from Bohlens when Michael Wayne gave it to them to make copies of it for his brothers and sisters. Bohlens is using false advertising to sell an expensive belt buckle and it doesnt look like the original.

      Chris
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      I do not think we will ever know what happend or who has the original Red River D Belt Buckle that Howard Winchester Hawks gave to Duke for doing the Film Red River.


      I do know that the Buckle was Stolen while they where making the Statue for the John Wayne Airport in Orange County back in the early 1980s.


      I do have Two of the Belt Buckles that were given to me back in the 1970s that are Copys of the Original.


      For the story about the Statue, the Large Cartridge in the rear of Duke's Gunbelt and the Red River D Belt Buckle being Stolen as told by Mike Wayne, you can go to the Site Below.




      Chilibill :cowboy:
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      I know what happen to John Wayne's Red River D belt buckle, it was stolen from Bohlens on ether 9-24-81 or 9-25-81 according to the police report and it had nothing to do with the statue. I was told when I was a kid by my father that if you want to find out the truth you should go to the souse. so I did. I have spoken to both Michael Wayne and Howard Hawks's son and they both told me that the belt buckles were made in Mexico and that they were made for some cast and crew members and also for family and they were made of silver and gold. The only one that really knows what happen to John Wayne's buckle is the man that stole it. There is a lot of copies of the Red River D belt buckle out there but what you should know is that the original was made of silver and gold they were made in Mexico and not to buy one because someone advertises that they made the original but to by one that you can afford and that makes you happy.

      Chris
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      Chris wrote:

      . . . buy one that you can afford and that makes you happy.

      AMEN! You're quite right. The one I wear is similar to the one available at the 26 Bar Ranch Gift shop, and I am very happy with it.

      Chris, it would be great if you could share more tales of chatting with Mike Wayne or Howard Hawks' son. How is it you have known them? I see you have been a member of this message board for a long time (since '03), but haven't posted much. I hope that is about to change. We'd love to hear more stories.:hyper:

      Chester :newyear:
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      I joined this message board for the reason of dispelling the facts and rumors of the Red River D belt buckle.
      As a friend of Michael Wayne’s before his passing in April of ’03 I know these facts to be true. Bohlin did not make the original! The originals were made in Nogales Mexico during the filming of the movie near by. JW and Howard Hawks exchanged their buckles with each other out of mutual respect and admiration for each other. Not to mention that John didn’t like his initials on things. Hence the belt buckle that the Duke wore had HWH on the buckle. And wear he did in most of his westerns following Red River.
      Michael Wayne took his father’s original into Bohlins to be re-mastered where it was stolen. I saw the original police report as well as pictures of the HWH buckle.
      I also know for a fact that Michael Wayne worked with friend of his by the name of Gary, owner of Gary’s Custom Saddlery and Silver to do an exact reproduction of the original using both the RRD buckle and the 26 Bar buckle (that Michael wore all the time) as exemplars. No other buckle has come closer! To view this authentic reproduction you can go to his web site > http://www.garyscustomsaddleryandsilver.com
      Bohlin’s is no where close. And they are claiming to have made the originals in their new advertising campaign! A friend of mine confronted them and they admitted to this fact.
      The original buckle was heavy solid sterling silver with all the brand and lettering out of solid 14kt gold. The year on the buckle is/was 1946, the year the movie was made, not the release year.
      Some of the original buckles are still in existence with relatives and families of the cast.
      I know of some of Michael and Gretchen (Michael’s widow) Wayne’s friends are doing further research into the buckles and their history, and am anxious to hear their results. I hope some kind of article or web site is written or started with the results of all their research.
      I’ve attached a picture of Michael’s personal belt buckle.

      COWBOY
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      Thanks for the great reply realcowboy1.

      Its good to get info from the source.

      It is also too bad that there are people out there that steal and cheat to get ahead. But, such as the nature of some people. I hope someday that the story gets solved and the belt buckle ends up in a place that all fans of JW can admire it.
      Life is hard, its even harder when your stupid!!
      -John Wayne
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      Cowboy,
      It's good to see that the real history of the Red River D belt buckle is getting out. Michael told me the same thing about the belt buckles. Howard Hawks's son has a Red River D belt buckle that his father gave him when he worked as a prop man on the film. There was a number of belt buckles made and in more than one size. Bohlin's silver work is very nice but they shouldn't say they made the original if they didn't and Cowboy you are right, the one that is on that link that is made by Gary is the best that I have seen. Bohlin's should look at that link and maybe they can get an idea what it realy looks like.

      Chris
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      realcowboy1 wrote:



      I know of some of Michael and Gretchen (Michael’s widow) Wayne’s friends are doing further research into the buckles and their history, and am anxious to hear their results. I hope some kind of article or web site is written or started with the results of all their research.
      I’ve attached a picture of Michael’s personal belt buckle.

      COWBOY


      Welcome Cowboy!

      When you do find out something please feel free to start a new thread or update this one with the new information!


      Thanks,

      Kevin
      Kevin - Moderator/Administrator
      jwayne.com
      ___________________________________
      Official JWMB online store
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      Great information,and hopefully goes a long way
      to solving the myth, surrounding the buckle.
      I know many of us have replicas of some kind,
      but it's sure good to see what the original, might look like
      Best Wishes
      Keith
      London- England
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      I know many of you have your own opinion on what the Real Red River D Belt Buckle looks like, and that is just fine.


      I saw the Real One on Duke in the 1970s when I flew Duke and the Hearst to the "Hearst Wyntoon Ranch for a 3 day stay at the Ranch. :smile:


      I have two copys of the Buckle that Duke sent to my Wife and I after we had sent the 5 Gallons of Chili to London for the Cast and Crew Party for the Film Brannagan, and they look more like the last two Buckles on the Site Below. When my Wife Martha was still Here we wore them all the time, but now I keep them in the Gun Safe with some of Duke's Pistols and Rifles. :glare:


      The one in the middle by "Gary's Belt Buckles" looks just like the one that Duke was wearing at the Wyntoon Ranch, but the Letters and Brand looked more Gold Color, but that could be just the picture not showing the Gold Color.


      The one that I wear when I am at the 26 Bar Ranch is the Bottom one on the page and is a good Brass copy. I hope to have 100 of these at the Ranch Soon for the little Museum.



      Note;
      Most people that I have talked to that know anything about the "Red River Belt Buckle" said that the Ones that Howard W. Hawks had made, were made in Mexico South of Nogales, Arizona.




      Chilibill :cowboy:
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      If you go to the "official" John wayne website at johnwayne.com . Then click on the news button, scroll to the November 6th 2006 date, you will see that Wayne Enterprises is having a official Red River D buckle made by The Bohlin company. You can download the .PDF file and read what the plans are for the reproductions.
      Life is hard, its even harder when your stupid!!
      -John Wayne
    • Re: Belt Buckles

      SXViper
      The one that Wayne Enterprises and The Bohlin Company came out with doesnt look anything like the original. The one that Cowboy has the link to looks more like the original. Also in that ad The Bohlin company clams the they made the original and that is not true, they are saying that so people will buy there belt buckles, and they cost a lot of money.

      Chris