Tag Archives: shoes

Here’s to Verna May Wilson Hadlock’s Shoes Linda Knight Seccaspina

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Here’s to Verna May Wilson Hadlock’s Shoes Linda Knight Seccaspina

I was a child who missed the saddle shoes of the 40s and the 50s by a few years, but my High School friend and neighbour Verna May Wilson Hadlock made up for me. I really don’t wander around beginning conversations about saddle shoes these days, but when the subject comes up I once again express my opinions. It seems the more I age, my bag of opinions overflows solely supported by personal observations of course.

I do remember hearing Verna telling me how her Mother became hysterical at the sight of the new saddle shoes when she returned home after her first day at school. They were scuffed and gave the appearance of having gone through a small war, but that was the “in” way to wear saddle shoes.

Some of you will remember the old days of saddle shoes when you bought them sparkling white and clean, and then you tried your very hardest to get them dirty before the kids at school got the chance to do the job for you. Seems nice white saddle shoes just weren’t the thing in those days, and it was very painful to have your friends trying to take every inch of “bark“ off the uppers of your saddle shoes.

Day after day a bit more wear and tear became noticeable. Just about the time you really got the uppers of your saddle shoes to the point where they were socially acceptable with the “In” crowd the main part of the shoe began to deteriorate– and it was time to get a new pair.

There were all sorts of things Verna Wilson did with saddle shoes. She would change her laces to match an outfit and I swear some neighbours peeked out of their Albert Street Venetian blinds on a daily basis to see what she had done. But, this was a girl that came home at lunchtime to change into another fresh white blouse that she wore with her navy blue school tunic, and she was just so perfect in my eyes.

Verna mentioned there was a professional scuffer at Cowansville High School that would scuff your saddle shoes for a nominal price. I heard that his scuffing business was so popular that you had to wait as long as three or four days to get his attention.

In 1972 the style of saddle shoes came back.There were those of my friends who thought the return of saddle shoes was the best thing since Lucky Charms and Lava Lamps. Then, there were two or three, and myself, who said they didn’t care for the entire situation. As would be expected, there were a few old timers that had to throw in their two cents and tell “us kids” about the “olden days” of shoewear.

My style, once older, never followed Verna, but it did involve my Grandmother’s borrowed pearls, lace up brown orthopaedic shoes with a scent of Evening in Paris. I was also so mesmerised with tap dancing that sometimes I taped nickels on the bottom of my shoes. The coins also  came in handy for a call on an emergency payphone. Can you even imagine– a nickel? But, after months of wearing them my father began calling them “clodhoppers”– as that’s what they used to call big shoes that just didn’t fit well anymore.

In Grade 7 I wandered into Hashim’s Clothing store on South Street and fondled the most god awful shoes you can imagine. They were vinyl lime green elf shoes trimmed with fringe. What I saw in those shoes I have no idea, but I had to have them. My father relented and came to Hashims and spoke with the salesclerk about the possibilities of getting deformed toes from being squeezed into those pointy shoes. She assured him of course with the words of a podiatrist that I should be fine. As I glance at my large claw toes today that look like they grew like wayward tree roots I am reminded that yes, those shoes had something to do with my toes after wearing them in the rain sleet and snow.

Shoes have always been part of everyone’s lives and they can either afford you the adoration of your peers, or jeers from the cool kids table in the lunchroom. Should we get back into the Hush Puppies era, or can we just stop now at Saddle Shoes and Loafers? Did you know that the shoes we wore actually changed the shape of our feet over the course of our lives? As Leonardo DaVinci once said, “The human foot is a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art.”  Maybe so, but after a lifetime of fashionable shoes, my feet are no masterpieces– they in fact looked like very scuffed Saddle shoes that no one would want– and that my friends is going easy on them.

Should Life Be This Hard? Linda Knight Seccaspina

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Should Life Be This Hard? Linda Knight Seccaspina

One day this week I decided to wear a polka dot jumpsuit instead of pants. At my age I should know better, and the days of wearing a bodysuit with snaps at the crotch are over- so are  buttons in the back of anything. I had worn the jumpsuit before, but could not remember who did the buttons up in the back. So that day I had to program any trip to the washroom lest I just walk around with the top part hanging around my waist.

I made it through the day, but once again I asked myself why I kept this jumpsuit. Rescuing a designer jumpsuit at a steal for $7.00 at a thrift shop should not be the answer. It’s not like it was trapped at the store.

Skinny Jeans

For most of my lifetime I have suffered for fashion beginning with skinny leg jeans.  My legs are not skinny, so why am I wearing them?  Did you know skinny jeans have been known to cause weakness in your ankles? I once read a news article about a woman who spent the day packing and moving for a friend wearing her skinny leg jeans. Apparently after the event she could no longer walk and spent several hours lying on the ground.

Skinny jeans didn’t put her in the hospital, wearing a pair of skinny jeans that were probably at least 2 sizes too small did. Back in the day, the only way to zip super tight jeans up was to lay flat on the floor, or on your bed and use a fork to get the zipper up! Then you had to find someone to pull you up and stand you up straight!  We didn’t listen then, and  I am still not listening now.  For some people like myself “Fashion Week’ lasts all year, and every single day that I am alive.

Corsets

Why am  I also interested in the fashion trend called waist training that has been around since the 1800s? Do I really need to follow this fad at 71? Aren’t my bones cracking enough? I can’t sit, I can’t breathe and my body is really from McDonalds ‘and loving it’. The goal for wearing a waist trainer– if you can wear it for 10 hours a day for at least 8 weeks– is a miraculous transformation. But, how do you get through the first 5 minutes?

Putting on the waist trainer was enough of a workout for the first day. I don’t think my organs moved at all, and my health seems fine after I got it on. “After I got it on” should be the keywords here.  But who really knows what’s up with my insides anyways? They aren’t talking!  Just curious, what part of the mirror thought I looked spectacular in one of these things.

When I was a child, my grandmother wore one. I loved the Eaton’s flesh coloured model, the salmon satin, and the lace. My grandfather used to have to put his foot on her back and heave ho.That was so romantic and it did nothing for her very ample waist except freeze it in place for eternity.

Shoes

Thirty seven years ago I delivered a ten pound male child. There isn’t a month that goes by that I don’t remind him, like Beverley Goldberg, that I was in labour for 28 and one half hours. What did I get from that day in August of 1985 besides a beautiful healthy baby boy? Well, the next day the top of my left foot became very puffy and has remained that way for 37 years. The nurse said not to worry at the time because it was only postpartum fluid swelling– and it would go away. Well that fluid moved its home furnishings and plants and has squatted on top of my foot since that day in 1985.

Anytime I buy shoes the right foot takes a size 9, and the other foot needs the box the shoes came in. I wore trendy heels every day of my life until that day, and now when I find shoes that fit I buy what they have in my size. Black, size 10 and flat.

You don’t need a “warning” for this craziness. It’s called common sense. Do you see warnings on hammers saying: “Striking repeatedly on the head may cause brain damage”?

Life is always full of interruptions and complications isn’t it? Or, do I now consider common sense like deodorant? The people that need it most  just never seem to use it.

Related reading

Glitter Shine and Satin – Ottawa Fashion 1978 – Flash Cadilac

Fashion Faux Pas in the Cemetery

The Stack Perm or the Disco Wedge ? 1970s Hair Fashion

The Best Little Chin Hair Post on the Prairie

The Mysterious Shoe Trees

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The Mysterious Shoe Trees

In the 1950s we had a shoe tree which according to the late great Blaine Cornell was located on upper High Street, which I keep asking if folks remember. When I moved here there was also a super great shoe tree just as you turned into the town of Almonte on the right hand side at the edge of the forest. Then many years later it was removed.

Carleton Place once again had the beginnings of one on McArthur Island which used to be called Gillies Grove. I managed to take a photo before some of the trees disappeared years ago LOL.

So what happened to the shoe trees? Dies anyone know? I also found these notes in the old Ottawa Citizen.

The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
24 Jan 1985, Thu  •  Page 21

Also read____

Lost Lanark Legacy Fruit Trees– Need Help!

Whatever Happened to the Lanark County Greening Apple?

When Were Some of the Trees Planted in Riverside Park?

also read from the millstone

Tree of many tongues

April 15, 2013 – 7:00 am

by Neil Carleton — CLICK

The Lynchs of Almonte — Genealogy

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The Lynchs of Almonte — Genealogy
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
26 Apr 1916, Wed  •  Page 11

The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
14 Aug 1911, Mon  •  Page 1
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Fri, Nov 03, 1899 · Page 6
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
16 Sep 1893, Sat  •  Page 5

D. P. Lynch

In those days, even as at present, Almonte had three doctors, a medical triumvirate whose names were household words in the community and the district. Alphabetically, they were Dunn, Kelly and Metcalfe. The first was my father.

He came to Almonte in the later months of 1911, and the circumstances were both fortuitous and amusing. In early August of that year the town lost Dr. D. P. Lynch through death. Shortly after, Father J. F. McNally, newly appointed parish priest in Almonte (a Prince Edward Islander by birth, and subsequently Archbishop of Halifax) wrote to my father at Elgin in Leeds County, pointing out the death of Dr. Lynch.

Source: “Tales from the Doctors House” by John Dunn.
Built in 1868, John Dunn fondly remembers his time in the stone Doctor’s House in Almonte. As a child, it made him feel special. After all, all the important buildings in Almonte were made of stone: the railway station, the high school, the post office, and the churches. His father, Dr. John Dunn had inherited the house in 1910 from the previous doctor, Dennis Lynch, who had inherited it from the first doctor in Almonte, William Mostyn. The second owner, DrLynch, added an open verandah

A. Lynch

The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
03 Nov 1899, Fri  •  Page 6 (first wife emily)

They lived on Bridge Street in Almonte

The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
12 Sep 1921, Mon  •  Page 6
From Sandra Houston’s Rosamond Cookbook 1911
NAME:Albert Enoch Lynch
BIRTH DATE:12 Sep 1865
BIRTH PLACE:Ramsay, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada
DEATH DATE:2 Feb 1925
DEATH PLACE:Almonte, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada
CEMETERY:Saint Pauls Anglican Church Cemetery
BURIAL OR CREMATION PLACE:Almonte, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada
HAS BIO?:N
FATHER:Daniel Lynch
MOTHER:Jane Lynch
SPOUSE:Emily Lynch (first wife)

3 Albert E. LYNCH b: 12 September 1865 in Ramsay Twp, Ont. d: 02 February 1925 in St. Paul’s Cemetery – Almonte, Ont.
+Sarah Ellen BOOTHROYD b: 06 August 1874 m: 07 October 1902 in St Andrew’s, Almonte
*2nd Wife of Albert E. Lynch:

(Sarah Ellens sister)

When Mary Boothroyd was born on 31 August 1878, in Almonte, Mississippi Mills, Lanark, Ontario, Canada, her father, Joseph Boothroyd, was 38 and her mother, Easter Stead, was 39. She married Henry August Wagner on 10 November 1919, in Almonte, Mississippi Mills, Lanark, Ontario, Canada. She lived in Ontario, Canada in 1878 and Lanark, Ontario, Canada for about 10 years. She died on 5 December 1944, in Almonte, Mississippi Mills, Lanark, Ontario, Canada, at the age of 66, and was buried in Almonte, Mississippi Mills, Lanark, Ontario, Canada.

These Shoes Weren’t Made for Walking

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These Shoes Weren’t Made for Walking

Thirty five years ago I delivered a ten pound male child. There isn’t a month that doesn’t go by that I don’t remind him, like Beverley Goldberg, that I was in labour for 28 and one half hours. What did I get from that day in August of 1985 besides a beautiful healthy baby boy? Well, the next day the top of my left foot became very puffy and has remained that way for 35 years. The nurse said not to worry at the time because it was only postpartum fluid swelling– and it would go away. Well that fluid, brought its home furnishings and plants and has squatted on top of my foot since that day in 1985.

Anytime I buy shoes the right foot takes a size 9, and the other foot needs the shoebox the pair came in. I wore trendy heels every day of my life until that day, and now when I find shoes that fit I buy what they have in my size. Don’t even talk to me about boots.

Last year I walked into Walmart on a quest for comfy shoes. Instead, I purchased two pairs of high heel shoes that cost only $5.00 each. I was thrilled when I tried them on and vowed to wear them everyday for one hour until I got used to them.The next day I donned the leopard 4 inch heels trimmed in red and walked from the car to the row of grocery carts. By aisle two I was hanging over the cart to support myself and my feet were now in excruciating pain.

A farmer in overalls was also checking out my shoes and followed me to aisle four pretending to buy peaches. He returned a few times still eyeing the shoes, and I don’t think I ever realized the power of heels in a rural area. I paid for the groceries and literally crawled back to the car in pain. As soon as I sat in the car I ripped them off, and the feeling of relief was much like being constipated and then having it all disappear.

I gave away my last pair of leopard stilettos to a friend of mine after keeping them in my closet for five years. They had thin gold heels, and the suede was soft as silk, and they had only been worn once for about 8 minutes. Placing them on my feet as I sat on the couch at a monthly church lady meeting; I gingerly walked over for tea with a performance worthy of an Academy Award. The ladies marveled at how I had walked in them all day and I never acknowledged anything different. What a shoe Oscar moment that was, and really it wasn’t the place to fib at a church meeting.

Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz proved shoes on a gal’s feet can change your life, and Cinderella made a point that just one shoe can procure you a Prince Charming. So, now I have come up with some excuses when my shoes really don’t match my eccentric clothes. 

I tell folks I am afraid of heights so I wear lower heels. Well, let’s just say I am just one step closer to Velcro shoes. Cowboys die with their boots on and I am just going to die comfortably with my flats. Life is always full of interruptions and complications isn’t it?:)

Saddle Shoes –Did You Walk a Mile in Those Shoes?

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Saddle Shoes –Did You Walk a Mile in Those Shoes?

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I was a child who missed the saddle shoes of the 40s and the 50s by a few years, but my older Albert Street friend and neighbour Verna May Wilson made up for me. There were those of of my friends who thought the return of saddle shoes in 1972 was the best thing since Lucky Charms and Lava Lamps. Then there were two or three and myself who said they hated the entire situation with I believe we said, “You’ve got to be kidding me!”. And, as would be expected, there were a few old timers that had to throw in their two cents and tell “us kids” about the “olden days”. One of my friends launched the conversation, and her first words were, “Hey, saddle shoes are coming back, and my Mother thinks that is great!” For her Mother it was like smelling wine and roses— no, more like winning a sweepstakes contest.

Some of you some will remember the old days of saddle shoes when you bought them sparkling white and clean, and then you tried your very hardest to get them dirty before the kids at school got the chance to do the job for you. Seems nice white saddle shoes just wasn’t the thing in those days, and it was very painful to have your friends trying to take every inch of bark off the uppers of your saddle shoes.

 

a96ed2c9bbcc8c9847673e38ee2de621.jpg



I really don’t wander around beginning conversations about saddle shoes these days, but when the subject has come up  I once again have always always expressed my displeasure with them. 

I do remember hearing Verna telling me her Mother became hysterical at the sight of the new saddle shoes when she returned home after her first day at school. They were scuffed and gave the appearance of having gone through a small war, but that was the “in” way to wear saddle shoes.

Day after day a bit more wear and tear became noticeable, and just about the time you really got the uppers of your saddle shoes to the point where they were socially acceptable with the “In” crowd things started happening to the rest of the shoes, and it was time to get a new pair.

 

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There were all sorts of things Verna Wilson did with saddle shoes. She would change her laces to match an outfit and I swear some peaked out of their Albert Street Venetian blinds on a daily basis to see what she had done. But, this was a girl that came home at lunchtime to change into another fresh white blouse that she wore with her navy blue school tunic, and she was perfect in my eyes.

She mentioned there was a professional scuffer at Cowansville High School that would scuff your saddle shoes for a nominal price. I heard that his scuffing business was so popular that you had to wait as long as three or four days to get his attention.

My style once older never followed Verna, but it involved my Grandmother’s borrowed pearls, penny loafers, with a scent of Evening in Paris. I was also so mesmerized with tap dancing that sometimes I taped nickles on the bottom of my shoes. The coin sometimes came in handy for a call on an emergency payphone. Can you even imagine– a penny! But after months of wearing them my father began calling them “clodhoppers” as that’s what they used to call big shoes that just didn’t fit well anymore.

 

57673c35aa639aa7978017349bd5007d.jpg

Shoes have always been part of everyone’s lives and they can either afford you the adoration of your peers, or jeers from the cool kids table in the lunch room. Should we get into the Hush Puppies era, or can we just stop now at Saddle Shoes and Loafers and suppress those memories?

Did you know that all these shoes we wore actually changed the shape of our feet over the course of our lives? As Leonardo DaVinci once said, “The human foot is a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art.”  Maybe so, but after a lifetime of fashionable shoes, my feet are no masterpieces– they in fact looked like very scuffed Saddle shoes that no one would want– and that my friends are going easy on them.

 

historicalnotes

 

I was Linda Knight, Junior bridesmaid at this wedding.:)

 - J. Dunn, Hadlock -Wilson -Wilson Wedding Held...

Clipped from

  1. The Gazette,
  2. 08 Sep 1959, Tue,
  3. Page 26

lindaaa.jpg - Youngsters Bid Saddle Shoes 1 . I I i I l 1 L I...

Clipped from

  1. Asheville Citizen-Times,
  2. 16 May 1943, Sun,
  3. Page 20
  1. Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place and The Tales of Almonte

Needham’s Shoe Store in Almonte- Memories

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Needham’s Shoe Store in Almonte- Memories

 

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 Scott Newton  Photo

In 1867 there were but five buildings in the block (Baker’s Jewellery Store to the Bank of Montreal). Three of these are still there – Albert Gale’s office building, the Royal Bank Building) called the Roe Building) and Philip Needham’s Store building, called the “Bruce Block.” Oscar Henderson had been advertising in the “Advance prior to 1867, as a book store proprietor in Perth, but in the Spring of 1867 he moved to Almonte and ran the same business in a frame building on the present location of the “Superior” – he also operated a telegraph office there. Long “The Tailor” who had been in the “African Warehouse” across the street now in the small building between the Royal Bank and the Needham building. Mr. Long deserves a story by himself – he had many locations, and his advertisements in the local papers showed that he was always returning from New York where he polished up on the latest styles. All his suits were sewn by hand, and he promised that no “sewing machine”, would ever be used on his customer’s clothes.

On the other corner of Mill and Brae was the Bank of Montreal, and George Eades Boot and Shoe Store. Needham and Son, bought out Geo. Eades later on and became a fixture in the community. Here are some comments of the folks that remember Needham’s Shoe store in Almonte…

Jayne Munro-Ouimet Linda, if I recall correctly it was located where Cortelli’s Pizza is  🙂Jayne

D Christopher Vaughan I can’t remember the exact location, but it was on the main street near Dougie James’ store I think. I remember getting our new shoes for school there. We were seven kids, and Mr. Needham would run an account so we could wear our new shoes – would stop by on our way home from school to make payments against our account. Small towns.

Susan Elliott Topping Us too and we were marched in again in the Fall for boots!

D Christopher Vaughan— Seems everyone had an account there – see following posts from Joe Ryan and Cathy Paterson. We got those big rubber Gollashes with the buckles that pulled right over your shoes in the winter. Does anyone remember picking up their repaired shoes or sharpened skates? They would be on the floor with all the other repairs, and Mr. Needham would tell you to “go in the back and find your shoes” (skates)

Author’s note-

 

 

Galoshes, also known as dickersonsgumshoesrubbers, or overshoes, are a type of rubber boot that is slipped over shoes to keep them from getting muddy or wet.a rubberized boot. In the United Kingdom, however, a galosh is an overshoe made of a weatherproof material to protect a more vulnerable shoe underneath and keep the foot warm and dry.

Linda Nilson-Rogers Yes and Phil Needham did repairs in harness for me too! The shop was a marvel, original wood floors and shoe boxes from counter top to ceiling!

Kim Davis We had 2 full shoe stores-one was on the corner opposite the BMO–The name escapes me…2 shoe stores, 2 hardware stores, women’s clothing, men’s clothing, Stedmans drug store and grocery store …all downtown. Throw in a couple of variety stores too! Mortons and Dougie James. Happening spot!

Joanna Meehan-Harrington the other one was Procter’s.

Dawn Jones Did Dinty Scott not have a shoe store in town?

Cathy Paterson We bought all our families footwear from Mr Needham ! We ran an account their too!

Joe Ryan Aww yes Philip Needham’s ..i remember we had an account there too and once in a while my mom would give me a dollar or two to put down on the account. Philip had a very rudimentary set of books …mostly just scribbled notes. Never could figure out how he kept track of it all!!!! Quality footwear back then!!!

Sandy France Harold Procter shoes was opposite the BMO

Ronald Ford Phil all so sharpened skates and did them right.5 cents for skate sharpening

Peggy Byrne I can still picture him in his apron coming out from his workshop back of the cash

Sandy France Phil liked to pretend he was a curmudgeon…or maybe he wasn’t pretending 🙂

 

November 1977

One of Almonte’s long-time businessmen, Mr. Phillip Needham passed away in hospital here on Tuesday, November 8, 1977. Although not in the best of health for the past few months, his last illness was short. He was removed to hospital just a few hours before his passing. M r. Needham was born in Barwell, Leicestershire, England a son of the late George Needham and his wife, Beatrice Quartermain. 

 

The family came to Canada in 1919, settling in Toronto. They came to Almonte in 1924. He and his father were in the shoe store and shoe repair business in Almonte for a total of 53 years. They were first in the Isobel McLean building on Brae Street, then in a location on Bridge Street, and for 45 years in the store on Mill Street, which they acquired when the late Geo. W. Eades removed to Carleton Place. His father died in 1946. Mr. Needham was a member of St. Paul’s Anglican Church, where he sang in the choir for 27 years. He is survived by his wife, the former Edith Warren; two daughters, Nancy (Mrs. Des Smithson) o f Almonte and Margaret (Mrs. Robert Grant) of Arnprior, and one granddaughter Diane Grant. The funeral service was held at the Kerry Funeral Home on Thursday at 2 p.m. conducted by Rev. Harry H. Brown, rector of St. Paul’s. Cremation was at Pinecrest Crematorium, Ottawa

Stories–

The story goes that Mrs. Bickley, upon arriving in Town as the wife of the new Anglican minister, had taken a pair of her shoes to Mr. Philip Needham (cobbler) on Mill Street to have them repaired. After depositing the shoes on Mr. Needham’s counter and being about to exit the store, she turned and said to Mr. Needham that he hadn’t given her a receipt for her shoes. To this Mr. Needham replied, “Who’d want them but you!” Mr. Needham owned the building (now owned by C. R. Gamble Holdings Inc.) which housed his store (street level) and Mr. Jamieson’s law office (second floor).

Read 40 years later click–https://millstonenews.com/40-years-later/

Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place and The Tales of Almonte

  1.  

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Did The Bootleggers in Lanark County Wear Cow Shoes?

James Watson– Bigamy and Shoes

Candy Stores Shoes and Plungers– Ray Paquette

Bristol Stomp Shoes by Charles Jay

“Manolo-in” and “Jimmy Choo-in” about Uncomfortable Shoes

1971

G. H. Ansley Perth Shoe Company Obituary

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G. H. Ansley Perth Shoe Company Obituary

 

 

 

Perth Remembered

The Factory began its life as a shoe manufacturing plant, thereby continuing a long tradition of shoemaking excellence in the town of Perth. Constructed for the Brown Shoe Company (Canada) it was considered the most modern facility of it’s kind when it opened it’s doors in November 1960.

For over forty years the Factory provided employment to hundreds of local people who produced countless numbers of shoes (most notably well known Buster Brown children’s shoes) which were sold at home and abroad.

 

EmployeesPerthShoeCo

1918- Perth Remembered

During this time the Brown Shoe Company developed strong ties to the community through its commitment to corporate and social responsibility. So it was with great sadness that The Factory closed its doors in 2003 and while efforts were made to revive shoe manufacturing at this location, it was not to be. The Factory

 

1960- In the Perth plant, 19,200 shoes were in process each day of the week. In the U.S. at the time there were fifty planes, including tanneries and other factories manufacturing the various component parts. Perth Remembered

 

A Timeline of Brown Shoes Click here..

inside-perth-shoe.jpg

Perth Remembered

 -

Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Citizen,
  2. 13 Jul 1935, Sat,
  3. Page 2

 

From the Buchanan Scrapbook–

CLIPPED FROM
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
12 Jul 1955, Tue  •  Page 11

What’s in Your Walls? A Concealed Shoe?

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What’s in Your Walls? A Concealed Shoe?

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On Friday Shane Wm. Edwards sent me a link about something from the Northhampton Museum– it all about something called concealed shoes.

I was hooked lock stock and barrel right way. Have you ever found old shoes hidden in odd locations in your house? If so, your discovery may be evidence of a mysterious worldwide superstitious practice.  Shoes were favoured because they retain their human shape after being taken off. Not only have they have been found in cottages and farms, but also noted historical homes and churches indicating that superstitious beliefs weren’t limited to any particular demographic.  So they used folk magic to comfort themselves. Ritual concealment of these objects gave emigrants and exiles a sense of control at a time when their grip on the world seemed fragile.

During the restoration of our devastating fire in 1995 the  house had to be gutted and when our fireplace was removed we found 8 individual shoes inside a large void behind the chimney mass.  Since we had already deemed the former owners as “thrifty” because nothing was found in the walls– this was a shocker. We threw the mangled blackened shoes out thinking they were used for insulation, but now that I know what they are, I wish we had kept them.

Image result for concealed shoe

Virtual Museum of Canada–Concealed shoe–The Bata Shoe Museum–XIXth Century

 

Evidence shows that shoes have been concealed in homes dating from the Middle Ages, and theories are warding off evil to bestowing overall good luck. Some even consider the possibility of the hidden shoes as a fertility charm.  But, most found shoes are mostly focused on superstitions to repel evil spirits. Shoes are most often found near areas leading into the house; most often chimneys, but also doors and windows. The shoes are well worn, being the only garment to take the shape or “essence” of the wearer, giving evidence to the idea that perhaps the practice was meant to trick evil spirits entering the house to notice the shoes and not the inhabitants of the house.

As for fertility–modern day practices included attaching shoes to wedding cars, throwing a shoe after a bride, and an odd practice called “smickling”.  Smickling was the practice of childless women trying on the shoes of a woman who had just given birth in order to enhance their own fertility. Another curious association between shoes and fertility is ascribed to the nursery rhyme: “There was an old woman who lived in a shoe…”

I guess the whole “step into my shoes” is an understatement, and these shoes seem to be  ‘the last great secret of our old houses’.

 

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

 

 

relatedreading

Clippings of the Saunders Brothers Shoe Scandal in Smiths Falls–Local Politician Runs Amuck!

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Clippings of the Saunders Brothers Shoe Scandal in Smiths Falls–Local Politician Runs Amuck!

 

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Shenanigans ran amuck in small towns, even in those days, and this was quite the story between a Smiths Falls shoe store and a member of council. It went back and forth for a long time, and the whole issue smelled badly from the beginning. on october 11, 1897, four of the most important witnesses failed to show up? Things do not seem to change do they? You only need to look at the news clipping in historical facts to understand there was history to one W.E. Brown alderman from Smiths Falls and when witnesses do not show up–well, it’s hard to make a case.

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  25 Jun 1897, Fri,  Page 6

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  28 Jun 1897, Mon,  Page 1

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  29 Jun 1897, Tue,  Page 7

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  06 Jul 1897, Tue,  Page 7

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  07 Jul 1897, Wed,  Page 6

 

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  09 Jul 1897, Fri,  Page 8

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  14 Jul 1897, Wed,  Page 7

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  22 Jul 1897, Thu,  Page 3

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  23 Oct 1897, Sat,  Page 6

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  11 Nov 1897, Thu,  Page 1

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  26 Jul 1898, Tue,  Page 8

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  22 Oct 1898, Sat,  Page 3

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  11 Jan 1898, Tue,  Page 7

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  26 Jul 1898, Tue,  Page 8

 

 

historicalnotes

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  16 Jun 1898, Thu,  Page 7

 

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

 

relatedreading

Judge Senkler and the Almonte Fire Bug

The Very Sad Tale of Hessie Churchill

The trial of W. H. S. Simpson the Railway Mail Clerk

The Buck Lake Murderer

Have you Ever Heard about Doran? Here Come da’ Judge!

Slander You Say in Hopetown? Divorce in Rosetta?

 

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