138-year-old shop putting boots up for good

Maria Almassy Kerr, who runs Liermann’s Saddle and Boot Shop, checks the inside of a youth boot she will put out for sale.

A Winfield landmark is closing.

Liermann’s Saddle and Boot Shop, at 1008 Main St., will close within the next couple of months, according to Maria Almassy Kerr, who runs the store.

Her mother, Rosemary Liermann Almassy, has Alzheimer’s and is too ill to continue as head of the business.

“We took her to KU Med,” Maria said. “They said she probably had Alzheimer’s for 10 years. She has a good body, but not a good mind.”

Rosemary is now receiving full-time care.

“My younger sister lives in Kansas City,” Kerr said. “She’ll be down for Fourth of July, and we’ll try to decide what to do.”

They will probably sell the stock and auction off the equipment, Kerr said.

“It’ll be OK,” she added.

The business has been a fixture in Winfield since 1881, though it was located in several downtown spots as its stock changed.

Kerr is the fourth generation of Liermanns to run the store. Her mother’s grandfather, George Liermann, ran the harness shop after his brother, William, left to run a similar business in Newkirk, Okla.

Lawrence Liermann inherited the business from his father, George. Lawrence kept the business focused on the horseman and his leather needs. Lawrence sold the shop in 1961, still doing well, to his daughter and son-in-law, Rosemary and the late Alex Almassy.

Kerr said her parents did not want to sell the business or the family name, but wanted their survivors just to close the store.

Kerr has many happy memories of growing up in downtown Winfield and of all the businesses that used to be there.

“Everything a girl needed you could get in a store on Main Street,” she said.

Some other businesses that have seen the changes on Main Street through the years include: Albright’s, also founded in 1881; Home Lumber, 1905; Union State Bank, 1902; and Ruppelius, 1902.

Kerr said when she and her sister will let the public know when they have made more firm plans for the store’s closing.

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