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REQUEST- Info On HARTT Shoes Canada

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I have some questions on a long-gone Canadian Company.

HARTT Shoes.

I did some cursory 'Google-ing', but I still have some questions..

1) What stores in Canada used to carry these shoes? (A friend told me Eatons)

2) What would have been the price range? (Company closed in 1999)

3) How would the quality of HARTT mens dress shoes compare to todays manufacturers?


I picked up a pair the other day.
They are pretty old, but were lightly worn.
A touch musty, but only a touch.

I have spent some time 'reviving' them,
and will post pictures Saturday sometime.
I want to use the daylight to get better shots.

Anyone have the info I need?
post #2 of 10
They where made in Fredericton, NB on Smythe street, the factory is still there, waiting for someone to do something with it.

I purchased a pair of pebbled calfskin long wingtips from the factory in 1996 and still wear them regularly(they do show their age though), the listed prices were in the $400-500 range. I wish I had bought more pairs, I picked my shoes up for $125 due to a very small imperfection in the brogue.

They also made shoes for Dacks, the style numbers and other features used to match.

They also made the dress boots for the mounties.

Based on my limited understanding of the shoe marketplace, they are definitely a better shoe than an Allen Edmonds(based on the pair I own), but not nearly as nice as an Alden (from what I saw at a visit to the Alden store in SF a few years ago).
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hi doink,
Thank you for your input.
Most interesting.
I am wearing my Hartt wingtips right now.
Very comfortable too,
and I am really impressed with how soft the leather still is.

I figured these must have been expensive,
and you have confirmed that.
Here are some pictures I took of my pair fo all to see....
post #4 of 10
I'm not really a fan of that medallion, but other than that, the shoes look great! Where did you get them?
post #5 of 10
Here are my brown long wing tips

There is no need to show the sole, it has been replaced at least 10 times, heels at least 20 times.

I won't bother with a toe shot, the medallions are pretty full of shoe cream and scuffed up.

I tend to wear these as a very informal shoe.

You can also see the creasing at the ball of my foot.

My black dacks's, made by harrt are a simple whole cut, nothing special and a bit bulky and not very refined compared to what is the norm around here.

On a related note, Klaxon Howl gets used harrts in from time to time.
LL
post #6 of 10
I actually have a few pairs of Hartt shoes up for sale on Ebay if anyones interested ....

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...STRK:MESELX:IT

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...STRK:MESELX:IT
post #7 of 10

REPLY  TO  DOINK -

THIS IS A LITTLE LATE ALTHOUGH WE HAVE JUST BEEN MADE AWARE OF THIS IMPORTANT GROUP OF WEBPAGES ...

MY FATHER, ANTHONY H. MARSTON, PURCHASED DACK’S SHOES IN 1947, THEN PURCHASED THE HARTT BOOT AND SHOE COMPANY IN 1958 … 

THE  FACTORY STREET  ADDRESS  IS  ACTUALLY  401  YORK  STREET  AND  SMYTHE  STREET  IS  THE  NEXT  MAJOR  STREET  OVER ...

HE THEN SOLD BOTH OPERATIONS TO CHURCH’S ENGLISH SHOES OF NORTHAMPTON, ENGLAND, IN 1964, REMAINING AS A DIRECTOR OF THAT BUSINESS INTO THE 1970s …

DACK’S WERE ORIGINALLY PRODUCED IN TORONTO UNTIL THE PURCHASE OF HARTT BOOT & SHOE AT WHICH TIME BOTH LINES WERE PRODUCED IN THIS MUCH LARGER FREDERICTON FACTORY, WHICH WORKED EXTREMELY WELL …

IN MANY INSTANCES, THE EXACT SAME SHOE STYLES WERE PRODUCED FOR BOTH THE DACK'S AND HARTT RANGE SO IT IS POSSIBLE TO FIND THESE TODAY WITH ONLY A DIFFERENTLY STAMPED HEEL SOCK ...

OVER MANY YEARS, THE HARTT LINE WAS SOLD IN ALL OF THE SIMPSON'S STORES ACROSS CANADA WHILE DACK'S WERE SOLD IN ALL OF THE EATON'S OUTLETS ...

ADDITIONALLY, AT ITS HIGHEST, WE HAD OVER 500 DEALERS, EITHER STRAIGHT SHOE STORES OR CLOTHING STORES, WHICH HAD DACK'S OR HARTT SHOES AVAILABLE WHERE IF THEY DID NOT HAVE ENOUGH STOCK ON HAND WE WOULD SHIP THESE OUT ON A PER SHOE ORDER BY EITHER CANPAR OR ON VARIOUS AIRLINES, BUS LINES AND TRAINS ALL ACROSS CANADA ...

A MAJOR FACT WHICH VERY FEW KNOW IS THAT DACK'S REMAINS THE 7th OLDEST CONTINUING BUSINESS IN THE HISTORY OF CANADA, HAVING BEEN FOUNDED IN 1834 THEN OPERATING CONTINUOUSLY UNTIL DECEMBER 2009 - 175 YEARS - WHEN IT WAS MOST UNFORTUNATELY ANNOUNCED THE BUSINESS HAD BEEN PLACED INTO BANKRUPTCY ...

BEFORE HIS DEATH, AT ALMOST THE AGE OF 99 IN LATE JANUARY 2009, MY FATHER WAS VERY PLEASED TO SEE THE FACTORY HAD BEEN RETAINED, MAINTAINED,  WAS TO BE TURNED INTO LOFT APARTMENTS, SOMETHING WHICH IS QUITE COMMON, POPULAR AND SUCCESSFUL ALL OVER THE PLACE THESE DAYS …

I WILL BE TRAVELING THROUGH FREDERICTON IN THE NEXT MONTHS AFTER NOT HAVING BEEN IN TOWN FOR A NUMBER OF YEARS AND WILL BE LOOKING FORWARD TO SEEING AND VISITING THE FACTORY, SEEING AND SPEAKING WITH MANY FORMER EMPLOYEES OF THE COMPANY, AS WELL AS SEEING HOW THE TOWN HAS CHANGED … COLONEL77

post #8 of 10
Colonel, for the future, would you kindly type normally, as using the CAPS KEY is considered SHOUTING on the internet. Thank you.
Also, a very good post. If possible, please take a lot of photos of the Hartt building and post them here. It would be good to see. Again, thank you for the information.
post #9 of 10

I purchased 2 pair of Hartt Shoes new and i believe they have one pair of size 10 in black camel skin and a pair of 71/2 brown Camel skin.

They are a very rare find .

I bought my first 2 pair in 1986 and have been wearing that brand ever since.

The store owner told me you would be looking at a 4 figures to buy the equivelent quality today as they are hand made.

post #10 of 10

The Hartt Shoe company was "the" final word in quality footwear in North America up until 1999.  Owing to Free Trade with the USA, much cheaper and lower quality imports swamped the Canadian market giving the market lots of attractive but less sturdy and brilliant shoes.  Hartt was purchased by Dack's in 1957, but it continued until June 1999 to make amazing shoes.  The company made shoes from a huge variety of hides, including seal, water buffalo, alligator, etc.  They made for many years the famous High brown riding boots worn by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.  In terms of comparison, the finest Alden, Allan Edmonds, and Cole Haan kind of compare, but understand, these were high end shoes made in small batches in a little three story factory on a quiet little street in my home town.  The quality of their really high end stuff was off the scale.  A cheap pair of Hartt shoes in 1990 was $275.  Their higher end stuff was over $600.  In today's dollars, even with the exchange rate between the US and Canada, you would still be talking about a $00 pair of shoes.  Recently, I priced out a pair of patent leather ones I found, and I couldn't find anything of the same quality for less than $400 and it was from Allan Edmonds.  As nice as some Florsheims are, I haven't sen any of them that are as tasteful and dignified looking as Hartt.  I have a dozen or so pairs of these shoes that I have found from various sources.  I like them all.  I also have some Cole Haan , Dexter, Kenneth Cole, vintage Dack's and some Italian pairs, so I have a really good point of comparison, I think.  They made brogues, cap toed Oxfords, plain Oxfords, and many, many more.  I hope that this answers your questions.  I also hope that you like the Hartt shoes, and if you like, and for a few shekels,  I am sure I can find more vintahe Hartt shoes in excellent shape.  Drop me a line if you like.   Dave 

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