View Full Version : Vintage Shoe Insoles - What Was Used?

Mike K.
05-18-2009, 07:49 AM
Okay, many of us own vintage or reproduction-vintage footwear. In searching through the various posts, there is often mention of adding cushion insoles to make the shoes/boots more comfortable. That got me thinking...

What insoles were used in vintage footwear a half-century ago to make them more comfortable?

Really, if we were living in 1940 before the days of memory foam and gel inserts, what would we have used? Simply a piece of soft leather? Wool felt? The question came to mind the other day when I was cleaning up my reproduction G.I. service boots. Aside from the thin leather insole, there really is not anything to offer extra support or comfort. Obviously, combat troops spent many long hours in their boots and that got me curious as to what they might have added (if anything besides thicker socks) to give more comfort.

05-18-2009, 10:25 AM

Not sure how vintage you want to go but C & D Jarnigans sells these for their Civil War Brogans:

#108 Period Insoles $8.50 per pair
These insoles are made, like the original examples in our collection, of sheet cork and heavy cotton drill with cotton taped edge. They prevent the friction which causes foot injury on the march. Specify.
Straight Last Version or Regular Version and size.




Marc Chevalier
05-18-2009, 10:27 AM
That's correct: sheet cork.


Mike K.
05-19-2009, 01:23 PM
Splendid...thank you!!

05-19-2009, 07:01 PM
i have a pair of
"Genuine Wool Felt Scholl insoles" with NRA tags on the cellophane