Converse – The History of Cool
Converse is one of the coolest footwear brands around.
Converse weren’t just born cool; the brand worked hard and has a long history dating back to the early 1900s. In the brand’s own words it was a series of ‘cool stories that have led us to where we are and will show us where we’ll go’. Converse first entered the world in 1908 when Marquis Mills Converse set up a rubber shoe factory. The factory was established to bypass a rubber trust preventing companies from dealing directly with retailers. The Converse factory in Massachusetts was a hit delivering directly to retailers across Boston.
The Converse Mission Statement
Converse pretty much established their cool kudos right from the start when in 1913 it announced it would be different to the mainstream. The Converse catalogue announced: “Our company was organized in 1908 fully believing that there was an earnest demand from the retail shoe dealer for a rubber shoe company that would be independent enough not to follow every other company in every thing they do.”
Converse shoes have pretty much been associated with independence and the free spirited ever since. It didn’t want the unthinking followers of fashion. What’s more, Converse established itself as a youth brand as Converse became associated with basketball after they designed a shoe for the sport that gained more traction.
After World War One, Chuck Taylor joined the Converse Rubber Company. His love of basketball ensured he became a champion of the Converse sneakers. By World War Two, Converse focuses its production on providing footwear and apparel for pilots and army servicemen overseas. As a brand, the fact it has played a role in some of history’s biggest events have helped forge its identity. In the fifties, when rock ‘n’ roll changed the world, the Converse high-top sneaker became part of the music movement alongside jeans and leather jackets.
By the late sixties, Converse went from strength to strength as basketball went pro. The early seventies saw the All Star Converse sneaker get a makeover with the big, bold star on its side. The brashness of the design crossed over from the basketball courts and was embraced by ‘rebellious souls’ across the States. In the eighties, Converse became a hit with college and high school teams and the brand seemed to go from strength to strength. The brand’s success today is partly in thanks to the fact it stays true to its heritage of being the slightly quirky individual’s footwear of choice. Converse still encapsulates ‘the spirit of rebellion and originality in basketball, Rock & Roll and anywhere else you find it.’
Buy Converse at Footasylum
At Footasylum we only stock the coolest brands, including Converse.