ARDMORE, Okla. (KFOR) – Of all the ways to measure time and distance, people like Harold Caudle can see it in the soles of their customers, and the hold on a storm welt.
“Shoe care, horse tack, used boots and saddles,” Harold lists off what’s in his store and what he does.
He’s been at these machines a long time, his whole adult life.
A bad leg meant he needed to work without doing much walking, so he took to repairing the wear on his customers’ shoes.
He recalls, “I thought if I could tool leather I could patch this or that, a bridle or whatever, so I did.”
His wife Ann insists, “We have the best customers in the world.”
She helped out too, working in this shop and another one in Sulphur, OK, putting in more than 50 years of her own.
“After 54 years,” she sighs, “We have a lot of stuff in here.”
The old Circle C Boot and Saddle Repair extended the lives of thousands of boots over the years.
All work guaranteed.
Never just cobbled together.
Echoing advice another repairman told her, she says, “We need to make you a master shoe repairman, not a cobbler.”
Their life’s work is scattered all over this tiny shop on North Washington in downtown Ardmore.
Repaired boots wait for pickup, others are for sale.
Saddles are marked off.
Harold and Ann are spending the last few days of 2021 trying to get rid of as much as they can before they close up for good.
“You still look pretty busy,” remarks a store visitor.
“Oh yes,” Harold replies. “I don’t know how many people, just yesterday, told me ‘you can’t quit’.”
They are a true ‘Mom and Pop’ shop.
Their expertise is won hard over long miles and patient work.
The Caudles are calling it quits satisfied they lasted longer that a lot of other pairs.
Harold smiles, “I probably won’t set an alarm most mornings because she doesn’t like them either.”
Harold told us he doesn’t plan on quitting completely. He plans to work part time with his son in the family workshop in Sulphur.
The store address is 25 North Washington, Ardmore, OK, 73401
Great State is sponsored by WEOKIE Credit Union