Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Galoshes

Date:
1820–39
Culture:
probably Central American
Medium:
rubber, leather
Credit Line:
Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Brooklyn Museum Collection
Accession Number:
2009.300.1641a, b
Not on view
Between 1820 and 1850, the introduction of rubber to the European and American markets and development of the rubber shoe industry effected the gradual replacement of pattens and clogs by galoshes. Made in Central or South America for the Western market prior to the development of the vulcanization process in the late 1830s, the earliest type of galoshes, like these from the collection, would become soft and gummy in hot weather and hard and brittle in the cold. Sometimes plain, this pair is stamped with elaborate foliate motif and has the additional option of a leather sole for increased durability and utility.
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