Lui Salina Interview, December 29, 1980


Lui Salina


Edd Nentwig and Diann Wiesner



Download Audio Interview (65.3 MB)

Download Transcript of Lui Salina Interview (260 KB)


Lui Salina describes his experiences as a fur buyer for Beckman’s Furs of Great Falls, Montana, and his 50-year relationship with the fur industry. Salina acknowledges the historical necessity of fur trapping in cold, northern territories, but also discusses how developments in the tanning, dyeing, and styling procedures reflect changing fashions and market demands. He asserts that there were no “ranch furs” (farm-raised furs) when he first started in the industry, and how “featherlighting” thick furs allows certain species of long-haired animals to be used in lighter weight products. Salina discusses how the values of skins are assessed from the perspective of both trapper and buyer and how so much of the American fur trade depends on overseas buyers from Europe, especially Italy.


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Document Type

Oral History


Lui Salina, 1915-2007; Great Falls, Montana; Furriers, United States; Beckman’s Furs, Great Falls, Montana; Beaver; Mink; Coyote; Raccoon; Fox; Silver Fox; Depression-era Industry Practices; World War, 1939-1945

Original Date


Time Period

Twentieth century

Geographic Coverage




Original Collection

Fur Trappers Oral History Project, OH 099, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula

Digital Publisher

University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library


Copyright to this collection is held by the interview participants and by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. Permission may be required for use. For further information please contact Archives and Special Collections: (406) 243-2053 /

Oral History Number

OH 099-006

Media Type

Sound; Text

Original Format

1 sound cassette (01:00:00 min.) analog + 1 transcript (14 p.: 28 cm.)

Digital Format

audio/mp3; application/pdf

Run Time

00:51:01 minutes

Local Filename

OH_099_006.mp3; OH_099_006.pdf

Lui Salina Interview, December 29, 1980