Footwear has a pretty fascinating history well worth looking into. After all, what we wear on our feet evolves every bit as much as the rest of the clothes we wear. Times change, fashion trends shift, and people start wearing new things. That brings us to the subject of sneakers. Did you know that sneakers have something in common with waterproof shoe covers, from a historical perspective?
The thing they have in common is the term 'galoshes'. At one time, galoshes were known as 'sneakers' despite being waterproof shoe covers rather than athletic shoes. It just goes to show that you cannot always trust that modern terms mean the same thing as their older counterparts. Understanding the roots of both types of footwear makes that pretty clear.
19th Century Sneakers
We tend to think of sneakers as 20th-century footwear. But according to Canada's Bata Shoe Museum – the only recognized shoe museum in the world, by the way – the birth of the modern sneaker dates back to the mid-1800s. At that time, industrialization was just beginning to take hold in Europe and North America. Leisure time was increasing, as was the demand for leisure activities among the upwardly mobile and higher classes.
The first sneakers were made with a combination of canvas and rubber. At that time, rubber was hard to come by. Thus, sneakers were rather expensive. They were the footwear of people who had both time and money to engage in leisure. Note that sneakers were intentionally designed to be athletic footwear.
These new athletic shoes were originally called tennis shoes. However, rubber galoshes were referred to as sneakers in mid-19th century England. They got the nick name from their rubber soles that allowed people to walk around in them without creating a lot of noise.
Americans began using the term 'sneakers' to describe tennis shoes by the 1870s. As the thinking goes, their reasoning was the same. Rubber soled sneakers barely made any noise as people walked in them. Whether or not that is true, the term is fairly ubiquitous in the U.S. now. Brits are still more likely than Americans to refer to theirs as tennis shoes or trainers.
Shoe Covers for Any Issues
So there you have it. Sneakers and waterproof shoe covers have the term 'galoshes' in common. Galoshes were once known as a sneakers a couple of hundred years ago. Today, we understand galoshes as footwear worn over the tops of other shoes to protect them against the weather.
As long as we are talking about galoshes and waterproof shoe covers, we would like to introduce you to our revolutionary shoe cover products. GC Tech designers have come up with an industry-leading shoe cover that is lightweight, weather resistant, and classically designed.
Our slip-on and zip-up shoe covers are made with a waterproof fabric that still allows your feet to breathe. The fabric makes our shoe covers extremely flexible without compromising integrity. We suspect you'll find them so comfortable that you will forget you're wearing them.
No worries about the fabric. It keeps out rain, snow, salt, and road debris without any difficulty. Each pair also comes with a convenient storage bag. When you arrive at your destination, just slip off your shoe covers and place them in the bag for safe keeping. The bag is waterproof as well, so there is no risk of wet shoe covers dripping all over the floor.
Whether you prefer to call them galoshes or waterproof shoe covers, we offer a product capable of protecting any pair of shoes. They will even work with your sneakers!