One year ago this month Urban Beardsman ran an article called Every Man Should Own Heritage Boots that turned my interest in boots into an obsession. I fell in love not only with heritage footwear, but with the American craftsmanship and history associated with boots worn by the men that built this country.
Chippewa Boots boasts a legacy and lineage dating back 114 years to its founding in 1901. The same year that J.P. Morgan incorporated U.S. Steel and New York State became the first to require license plates on cars.
The Chippewa name pays homage to the company’s original home, Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. They invented the engineer boot in 1937 to meet the demand of loggers manning what was then the largest lumber mill in the world. Not shy to hard work, Chippewa’s were also worn by army infantrymen during the Battle of the Bulge in World War II. How’s that for pedigree.
The 6-inch General Utility Service Boot is part of the Original Chippewa Collection, created to celebrate the rich heritage of the company. I received the Tan Renegade and they were a show stopper right out of the box. I’d call the color cognac. They’re also available in Black, Cordovan, and another brown they call Crazy Horse.
Chippewa uses world-class materials. Horween has been supplying them with handmade full grain American hides for more than 100 years. The eyelets are non-tarnishable. They have a steel shank and a Texon insole with maple leather heel. Goodyear leather welt construction means that these are tough as nails and can be resoled. The Vibram V-Bar outsoles are pressed in the USA. The waxed laces add a touch of class, not that they needed it.
Although I measure a 10 on a Brannock Device, I was advised to order a half a size down, which fit perfectly. Like most heritage boots these were firm at first and took a few weeks to break in. I’ve been wearing them for two months now and not only have they formed to my foot but are acquiring character, personality, and an amazing patina. The leather is so soft and supple that I have no trouble walking in them all day.
As we transition from summer to fall it’s time for you to invest in a strong boot that compliments that strong beard. The Chippewa General Utility Boots aren’t just a lifestyle boot, they’re a lifetime boot; guaranteed to only get better with time. There’s a reason that Chippewa’s motto is The best. By far.
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