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Dacks and other Canadian shoe brands

lbgradwell

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After an absence of some weeks digging out from nightmarish amounts of snow on a 200' driveway, I have returned to read LOTS of great new info. Some of you boys have had some outstanding finds!
 

lbgradwell

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They have been moved on to the gentleman who bought the SE Dack Ostrich and Water Bison shoes.
Then they went to someone worthy.

As you know, I already have the model; I was just hoping to upgrade condition on a budget! ;)
 

Dit_rich

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I seem to have bought these from you last night on behalf of a friend!
This is quite possible :) )). Just packed them couple of minutes ago and they are ready to go.
Truly wish I could keep them. Hope your friend will like them.
 

lbgradwell

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With February 14th not that far away, today I received this wonderful pair of early 1950's Valentine "Chief of Police" boots (10E).

The Valentine Shoe Co was founded by James Valentine in 1904 in Waterloo, Ontario. Valentine had learned the shoe making trade in his native Scotland before emigrating to Canada. In 1908 he acquired a partner, Jacob B. Martin,who had previously been the bookkeeper for a local shirtmaker and the firm is often referred to as Valentine & Martin after this time. Martin became sole owner after Valentine’s death in 1929 and in 1938 he sold the firm to Greb Shoe of Kitchener, which until then was primarily a boot maker.

According to a 2008 book, The Greb Story, Valentine and Martin Ltd. had 120 employees at the time and was a slightly larger company than Greb. In 1937 it had produced 272,000 pairs of shoes.Under Greb, the Waterloo plant continued to operate as Valentine and Martin until 1950 when it was vacated. Most of the workers moved to a plant at Breithaupt and St. Leger streets in Kitchener. It became known as Greb’s Valentine plant (pictured below), and is almost certainly where these boots were manufactured.

Valentine had a long history of manufacturing "Police Boots", stretching back as far as the 1920's. I have included two adverts below, the first two from 1929 and the second from 1941. Valentine shoes were actively marketed until the mid-1950's at which time Greb began to produce Hush Puppies under licence at the Valentine plant. With the immense popularity of Hush Puppies, Valentine faded into obscurity.


View attachment 1328102View attachment 1328103View attachment 1328104View attachment 1328106View attachment 1328108
View attachment 1328156

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So you ended up with these beauties too, Jim? Nice score! They were listed for a surprisingly long time.

A couple of more mentions of Valentine for your files...

1932-3 Army & Navy:

Valentine & Martin 1932-3 Army & Navy 1sm.jpg


Valentine & Martin 1932-3 Army & Navy 2sm.jpg



1937-8 Army & Navy:

Valentine & Martin 1937-8 Army & Navy.jpg
 

lbgradwell

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I have done quite a bit of snooping around with regard to Dacks history and production and I have not seen anything convincing suggesting that Dacks produced any private label shoes for Eaton's or any other merchandisers. They did produce unlabelled shoes for the Canadian military, although the coding makes it quite clear that they were Dack's. I am not saying this is impossible, but IMO it is not the case.
I'd speculate those Eaton shoes were made by Florsheim.
 

Jiqea

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So you ended up with these beauties too, Jim? Nice score! They were listed for a surprisingly long time.

A couple of more mentions of Valentine for your files...

1932-3 Army & Navy:

View attachment 1339464

View attachment 1339465


1937-8 Army & Navy:

View attachment 1339466
These are great adds! They made some fine boots.

I have the pair set aside for personal use, but I have a hard time wearing new old stock. They really fit me perfectly though. I guess I will just have to have a couple of drinks and go for it!
 

Jiqea

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I'd speculate those Eaton shoes were made by Florsheim.
Well, Scott-McHale made Eatons branded shoes in the early 50's, so It is a good possibility. They also do look quite a bit like some of the 1960's McHale/Florsheim offerings.
 

Jiqea

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I found a pair of thrashed Strathcona boots in my size, so while I am a big proponent of maintaining originality, I had this pair cut down to the top of the laces, and had the worn soles covered with an aggressive topy and a pair of vintage Biltrite heels added. I took them out in the snow this afternoon and they were really wonderful. I had a lady actually turn her walker around to get a second look!

IMG_3743.jpg
IMG_3744.jpg
 

Jiqea

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Does anybody know anything about British Boot Shop Calgary?
These look old school and nice.View attachment 1340047View attachment 1340046View attachment 1340045
Based on the doubled and stitched sock-liner, I am reasonably certain those are John McHale made shoes. Here is an interesting advert from 1997 that details the history of the British Boot Shop. Sounds like my type of place.

I have seen that toe medallion used on Florsheim labelled products from the McHale factory in the 1970's and early 80's. Attached is a photo of a pair of McHale made Florsheim Imperials. Your shoes look very similar.

British Boot Shop.JPG


$_59.jpg
 
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suitforcourt

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Hartt LWBs. Enough said.

The current label is made in Spain and the quality is not only lacking, but disgraceful for the money they charge customers. We will just have to thrift harder.
IMG_20200220_0725092.jpg
IMG_20200220_0725130.jpg
 

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