Current wet tan hide turn around: October 2024

Please remember these things when shipping to our facility:

  • Always call ahead before shipping any hides
  • Only ship green/frozen hides on Mondays (Never Ship USMAIL)
  • Be aware of any holidays where freight may not be running
  • Every shipment must have at least one completely filled out work order in box (Preferably stuck inside envelope taped to top flap inside box)

WORK ORDER (Click to fill out & print):


Tannery phone number: 319-246-1312

Tannery email:


We accept hides Monday thru Friday from all major carriers.Upon shipping your hides include your company name, address, phone number, and email on the packing slip (Our Old Barn work order is available below). 

Please call and/or email when sending any hides to our facility.

Specify on the packing slip what tan you would like for that specific hide. When listing each hide identify them with your coding system or customer name.

When we receive your hides we use our locking tags to coordinate with your identification marks.


We will send confirmation by email after it is received at our facility and entered into our software system. If there are any discrepancies please let us know as soon as possible so we can address it. If we don’t hear from you, we will assume the order is good to go. 


We will contact you before we ship the hides back to you to make sure you are available to receive them. All invoices are due prior to shipment. If you prefer we can keep a credit card on file. We will not charge your card until it is completed and ready to ship back to you. If hides are not paid for in full and picked up with 60 days of being notified of completion, they become the property of Old Barn Tannery and any deposit will be forfeited. NO EXCEPTIONS.


After you skin the hide off of the animal, you simply need to bag it, place a tag of some sort on the bag with your customer's name or ID# then box and ship them. The reason for the customer's # or name is that we will return your capes individually bagged with a waterproof tag on the outside indicating whatever information you have provided us with. This keeps you from sorting through a bunch of capes trying to figure out what's what. Once we receive your capes we will turn, salt, shave and tan. Because we turn everything completely prior to salting, we can shave up to the eyelids, the nose pad and nostrils, and the entire lip line, leaving you very little prep work prior to mounting.


Just after salting, hang your cape so the fluids can escape. Never roll them or leave them lay flat. In our opinion, doing so has them soaking in the bacteria you are trying to remove from them, which prevents drying. Prior to boxing, be sure they are dried completely. If they are still somewhat moist you will run the risk of them slipping in the areas that are not completely dry. Double salting is the best insurance you can have for getting a well-tanned cape. Salt and hang them where they can drip dry. The next day, come back and knock the salt off and reapply another coat of salt. Hang again and let dry. A fan or a dehumidifier does a wonderful job in speeding the drying time. Salting is a big factor in the quality of your tanned skin. Letting them dry completely sets the hair and prepares the skin for the tan. Prior to salting, cut or scrape any big chunks of meat off of the cape. Always be sure to turn eyes, ears, nose, and lips completely before salting. Salt will only penetrate ¼", therefore if you haven't turned completely, or removed the large chunks, the salt will never reach the area it was intended to, leaving it raw and very susceptible to slipping.

Mailing Address:

Old Barn Tannery
2772 County Road 103
Fort Madison, IA 52627