The Levi's® Vintage Clothing 1966 501® Jean represents a key chapter in 501® story. It began with a common issue among wearers, regarding the jean's construction: when they sat down, the back pocket rivets often scratched their furniture. In 1937, Levi Strauss & Co.® added a denim covering over the rivets, and everyone assumed this would solve the problem. But those rivets were tougher than they looked—after a few years of hard wear, they broke right through the denim, scratching up surfaces again. By 1966, technology had caught up with history, and the back pocket rivets could be replaced with bar tack stitches. This small change had a big impact; it solved the decades-long scratching problem, while maintaining the jean's renowned durability. This particular 501® style—with bar tacks and the big "E" red tab—only existed from 1966 to 1971. What did this mean for the 1966 501®? It meant that someone who hitchhiked their way to San Francisco at the time and bought a 501® was not only experiencing a once-in-a-lifetime event, but also wearing a unique, limited garment—one that would evolve when the "Summer of Love" era was just a faded memory. This jean is made with selvedge denim from Cone Mills of North Carolina— a Levi's® brand partner for over 100 years.
100% Cotton 12 oz. Cone Mills Red Selvedge Denim (14 oz. after wash) Button fly Back pockets with bar tack stitches instead of rivets Two Horse leather-like patch Big "E" double sided red Tab Twin needle Arcuate Made in the USA
Fit and Sizing
Sits at waist Rounded top block Regular fit Subtle tapered leg