Vintage late 20s to early 30s Walkover brand black leather one strap pumps or walking shoes are unworn deadstock from a local turn-of-the-century shoe store. They feature stacked leather heels and reptile embossing on the deco cut out details and straps, which fasten with pearly buttons.
The shoes are lined and soled in leather, with the soles embossed "Custom Grade, Walkover, `Princess Pat', Main Spring Arch". They measure 9 ¾" from toe to heel inside the shoe, 2 ¾" across the ball of the sole (approximately equivalent to a very narrow modern US 6.5), and have a 2" heel.
Condition is very good unworn, with scuffing to the toe tips (photo #6) and the back of both heels (photo #5), which is much less conspicuous than my photos make it appear. Although the leather appears to be in sturdy, supple condition, please remember that these shoes are over eighty years old and should be worn gently if at all!
Introduced for men by the Massachusetts-based George E. Keith Company in 1899, and for women in 1912, Walkover shoes were the first brand name men's shoe in the United States and hugely successful, both nationally and globally; according to the current Walkover website, Walkover shoes were sold in 102 countries worldwide by the end of the 1920s.
The "Princess Pat" style appears to have been introduced in 1920, and is described in a 1925 ad as "the world famous Walk-Over `comfort shoe'," so stylish it is appropriate "anywhere, anytime, even on the most formal occasions", yet "so comfortable that it makes the ideal shoe for travel, sport, or walking". The ad goes on to call the "Princess Pat" Walkover's "wonder shoe for women".
NOTE: Many thanks to Jonathan Walford, founder/curator of the Fashion History Museum and author of "The Seductive Shoe: Five Centuries of Fashion Footwear", for his assistance in dating and learning the history of these shoes.
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