Rios of Mercedes leads the world in premium, American-made cowboy boots, earning that rank through a rich, 170-year heritage built on solid boot construction techniques and quality materials. Since the Rios brothers hand-crafted their very first boots in 1853, Rios of Mercedes has been dedicated to providing hardworking cowboys – and others with an eye for quality – with reliable, yet stylish, boots.
Until the mid-1970s, the primary focus of Rios of Mercedes was creating customized, one-of-a-kind pairs for individual customers.
In 1975, the Evans family purchased Rios of Mercedes, bringing with them a determination to bring these artisan-quality boots to a broader population of boot wearers – without compromising quality. With a mission to expand availability without sacrificing quality – the family carefully dissected the company’s time-tested boot-making methods, leaving no stone unturned.
Through trial and error (and more than a little prototyping), the family found a way to apply the artisan-like craftsmanship of Rios of Mercedes to a wholesale production and manufacturing operation, a process that resulted in boots that met the high-standards customers had come to expect from the brand. Rios of Mercedes boots lost none of the eye-catching style and top-notch quality they were known for – and now they were able to reach more cowboys and other boot wearers than ever before.
To this day, all Rios of Mercedes boots are handcrafted from top-quality leathers and timeless designs in Mercedes, Texas. According to Rios of Mercedes co-owner, Trainor Evans, “You get what you put in.” You won’t find a better boot on the market.
A Family of Brands
Over time, Rios of Mercedes has expanded the business into other cowboy boot markets with the goal of creating quality boots for every type of cowboy boot enthusiast, no matter their position in life. This expansion began with the creation of Anderson Bean.
Anderson Bean boots first hit the market in the early ‘90s. The brand was named after the maiden names of two Evans family matriarchs, mother Helen Anderson and grandmother Macie Bean. Anderson Bean’s mission was to bring the same level of quality found in a pair of Rios of Mercedes boots to a new boot brand – set at a more moderate price point.
What immediately makes Anderson Bean boots stand out from the dozens of other boot brands on the market is the undeniable style inherent in every pair – a standard that calls for every pair of ABs to be a wearable work of Texas-made art. The boot also needed to withstand the same rough conditions as a pair of Rios of Mercedes boots. The brand has maintained a strong commitment to its customer base, listening closely to what cowboy boot wearers wanted out of their Anderson Beans. Every Anderson Bean boot is built by hand and is all leather for comfort and style – as well as to fulfill a commitment to making a great-fitting boot. Anderson Bean has led the market with innovation – including the often-imitated signature toe profile, handmade construction – and even the boot’s famous double-stitching.
The popularity and success of Anderson Bean led to a new member of the AB boot family in the late ’90s – Anderson Bean Kids. This line was spearheaded and brought to life by Rios of Mercedes’s Ryan Vaughan, who is now the company’s CEO.
Like Rios of Mercedes, Anderson Bean boots are crafted entirely in Mercedes, Texas.
Olathe Boot Company is another name that captures the attention of cowboy boot enthusiasts. Legend has it that the company’s original founder, Charles Hyer, created the first pair of modern-day cowboy boots back in 1875 by request of a cattleman from Colorado who was trading at the Kansas City stockyards. Hyer crafted boots to the cattleman’s specifications – boots with a pointed toe, raised heel, and a scalloped top. As future sales of this new style of “cowboy” boot would later demonstrate, these were attributes that also appealed to thousands of hardworking ranchers and cowboys throughout the West.
Despite its strong start, over the decades the Olathe Boot Company fell on hard times, passing between different owners before its eventual purchase in 2001 by the owners of Rios of Mercedes. To restore the brand to its former glory, Rios of Mercedes brought Olathe Boot production to its facility in Mercedes, Texas, and began by upping the quality and construction of Olathe boots.
It was clear from the start Olathe Boots had a definite and very specific type of following. The cowboy boot wearers who sought out Olathe boots did so because Olathe was one of the very few boot brands that they believed still maintained that original, authentic, American-style boot tradition. The loyal Olathe Boot customers spoke – and Rios of Mercedes listened carefully. While significantly upping the quality and durability of the boot, they carefully crafted new Olathe boot designs with the distinct toe and heel profile that the Olathe brand’s loyal customers preferred, a design rarely found in other boots. And customers showed their appreciation both with rave reviews – and with purchase after repeat purchase.
The success of the more moderately priced Anderson Bean brand inspired Rios of Mercedes to create a brand that would fall into a more affordable price range for the casual, entry-level boot buyer, but still provide the consumer with a reliable, well-built, well-fitting pair of boots. In addition, the market had recently become flooded with cheap Anderson Bean knockoffs from Mexico or overseas. The look of these knockoffs may sometimes have been close, but quality and durability were non-existent. There was clearly a market for a lower-priced everyday brand and Rios of Mercedes was certain they could use their close industry relationships to create a quality boot at a low price point.
Rios of Mercedes partnered with Carlos Rodriguez (who is now the company’s Chief Operations Officer) and began producing their new Horse Power boot brand in Rodriguez’s Young Guns factory, located in Leon, Mexico. The new boot launch was an unqualified success. Horse Power boots gave consumers access to a stylish, lower-priced boot option – without the need to sacrifice comfort, quality, or fit. What’s more, the Horse Power brand’s unique styling – featuring unique patchworks, zig-zags, and weaves – has been an undeniable hit!
Macie Bean has been the most recent addition to the Rios of Mercedes family of brands. For some time, there had been a clear need for quality cowboy boots designed for women. Jode Vaughan, the great-granddaughter of the company’s namesake, took the helm on this one.
Macie Bean boots bring together fashion-conscious designs, innovative construction, and quality materials. Style-driven and comfortable, each pair of Macie Bean boots are crafted in Leon, Mexico through a streamlined process that enables artisan quality at a scalable level. Constructed from soft, supple leathers, Macie Bean boots still have excellent durability, but improved comfort and wearability. Macie Bean boots lead the women’s boot market with classic, yet modern and stylish designs.
Each of the unique boot brands in the Rios of Mercedes family of brands share the same dedication to quality that galvanized Rios of Mercedes nearly two centuries ago – well-made, handcrafted boots for hard-working men and women – durable enough for work and stylish enough for play. Each brand within the Rios of Mercedes family of brands provides the best boot available in that price range, and all are handcrafted by artisan boot-makers using time-tested techniques and the finest quality materials. The result is our family of fine boot brands – with style and price point options designed to appeal to every member of your family.