Pre-Civil War Pair of Finely Crafted Men’s Boots


Pre-Civil War Pair of Finely Crafted Men’s Boots – This pair of boots must have been quite expensive in their day. The boots, unlike any other pair we have had, have gilded, embossed, decorative elements at the upper knee areas. The boots are also decoratively embossed over most of the upper areas, as well. Each boot is lined in a high grade of goat or calfskin, and both have a pair fabric pulls, stitched to the interior of each boot. The exterior leather is soft and constructed of a high grade of calfskin. The soles are, like many antebellum boots, are sewn, not pegged, to the uppers. Each boot exhibits a very high arch, with no internal shank, and stacked heels. The very square toes of these boots are indicative of their early period of construction – for ease of insertion into a booted stirrup, as well as being fashionable for the time period; boot toe boxes gradually began to taper to a more pointed or rounded configuration, during the course of the Civil War.  The back of both boots, just above each heel, exhibits some age and wear splitting (the right boot, more so, than the left). There is a seam separation in the lower front panel of the right boot. The boots do show some overall age wear and staining, but remain supple and strong. The boots date to the early to mid-1850s. We attend most of the major shows in the eastern U.S., and the vast majority of boots that are presented as Civil War period, are simply not. Most boots we see for sale now, date to the 1870s to the 1890s, often exhibiting metal shanks in the arch – a definitive sign of later construction. This pair is, without a doubt, from the antebellum era, and certainly could be correctly displayed with Civil War officer’s effects. The boots measure as follows: Height – 16.25”; Length (from heel to toe) – 10.75”.

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