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The Archetypal Denim Jacket

The 124MJ jacket is the archetypal denim jacket style of Wrangler. Introduced around the mid-sixties you can trace details of earlier denim jackets of the brand when they started in 1947. The 124MJ jacket is still heavily part of their current collection, also as the Sherpa version.

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

Introduced In The Mid-Sixties

This highlighted Wrangler 124MJ denim jacket is produced during the sixties. It’s made with a left-hand twill, so not with the iconic broken twill fabric which they introduced in 1964. So, it could be that this jacket is produced just before they launched their new innovative denim fabric in the market.

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

Worn By Legends

Legends as Robert Redford and John Lennon were often photographed wearing this jacket style, which makes it even cooler. Most of the time they were spotted wearing it double-denim style, so denim jacket with a pair of jeans. The original Tuxedo suit.

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

Details Of the Jacket

This Wrangler 124MJ jacket is a true icon with details as the W pocket stitching, rounded flap breast pockets, lower slanted front pockets, zig-zag stitching on the closure, and copper buttons.

The jacket is made with a selvedge left-hand fabric, which feels extremely soft due to the wear and washes over the years. On the inside, you can see the faded yellow selvedge ID. The entire jacket is stitched with tobacco-colored thread.

The back of the buttons are stamped with digits #50H and #01. Not sure if these digits refer to a specific production factory or period.

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

A Canvas To Customize

Denim jackets were used as a sort of canvas to customize by people, but also by brands as Wrangler. Wrangler made their now-famous Rodeo Champion Jackets for the winners of rodeo events when they started. This was a perfect marketing tool to establish themselves as a brand for the popular Western lifestyle. Soon, many people from ranches and clubs embroidered their jackets too.

Also, universities did the same for their students as part of their university teams. This shown vintage example is one of them too. On the back of the jacket, they added a chainstitched embroidery in white/ecru ‘Murray State Rodeo Club’. This refers to the Murray State University (MSU).

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

The Murray State University (MSU)

Murray State University (MSU) is a public university in Murray, Kentucky. It’s not far from Nashville, Tennessee. In addition to their main campus in Calloway County in southwestern Kentucky, Murray State operates extended campuses offering upper level and graduate courses in Paducah, Hopkinsville, Madisonville, and Henderson.

At Murray State University, they also have a rodeo team. They compete as one of the thirteen colleges and universities in the Ozark Region of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association against other college teams from Missouri, Arkansas, Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Texas.

Member schools of the Ozark Region usually have ten to twelve rodeos each year. The mission of the men’s and women’s rodeo teams is to provide the opportunity for students to earn a college degree while pursuing the sport of college rodeo. An introductory class in rodeo is offered each semester for beginning athletes to develop a better understanding of the events and rules of the sport.

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

wrangler 124MJ

The First Rodeo Events Of The University

The MSU University had its first rodeo in 1976 after the completion of the West Kentucky Livestock and Exposition Center, now known as the William ‘Bill’ Cherry Agricultural Exposition Center, the Murray State University College Rodeo is the oldest in Kentucky.

The MSU University is still organizing these rodeo events. They have different categories which you can join as saddle bronc riding, steer wrestling, bareback bronc riding, barrel racing, team roping, goat tying, breakaway, and calf roping.

Last year they organized their 45th annual college rodeo event on the 13th and 14th of November. It was organized at the Bill Cherry Expo Center, 2101 College Farm Road in Murray, Kentucky.

msu rodeo event

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Written by Wouter Munnichs
I'm the founder of Long John. Next to running this daily magazine, I'm working as a freelance denim specialist for the industry. Titled as 'Denim Influencer 2020' by Rivet 50. Celebrating my 10th anniversary with Long John this year.