Red Wing Shoes
|Industry||Designing and Manufacturing|
|Founder||Charles H. Beckman|
Within 10 years of its inception, Red Wing Shoes was producing more than 200,000 pairs of boots per year and was the primary company manufacturing footwear for American soldiers fighting in World War I. Red Wing Shoes continued its tradition of producing footwear for wartime use by manufacturing boots for American soldiers during World War II.
Though Red Wing Shoes is known primarily for their leather boots intended for heavy work, in recent years the company has expanded its line-up to include athletic-styled work shoes and footwear designed for specific job applications (such as slip-resistant shoes designed for the service industry and boots ideal for the mining industry that utilize a metatarsal guard). The company produces Oxfords, chukkas, hiking boots, and logger styles, as well as 6-inch and 8-inch work boots. While the core of Red Wing's focus is on work boots, in 2008 Red Wing Shoes added a Heritage catalog and also has experimented with more fashion-oriented shoes.
The Red Wing Shoe brand is no longer entirely handmade in the USA at the company's plants in Potosi, Missouri and a plant in Red Wing, Minnesota. In addition to manufacturing footwear under their own name, Red Wing Shoes also manufactures shoes under the Irish Setter Boots, Vasque, Carhartt (discontinued in 2011), and Worx brands. These non-Red Wing brands include a majority of models manufactured in the People's Republic of China. There are six sources of manufacture: completely made in the USA, made in the USA with imported materials, assembled in the USA with imported components, made in China, made in Korea and made in Vietnam.
In order to comply with ASTM F 2413-11 and M I/75 C/75 standards for impact and compression, Red Wing Shoes manufactures many of their styles with steel, non-metallic, and aluminum safety toes and offers puncture-resistant options that meet the ASTM F 2413-11 standard. Red Wing Shoes also produces footwear that is static-dissipative in order to control the amount of electrical discharge from the body and electrical hazard in order to provide extra protection from accidental contact with electrically energized objects. In 2014, in its first ever recall, Red Wing Shoes was forced to recall over 114,000 pairs of steel toe boots due to defective toe caps that could fail to protect wearers' feet.
- Manning, John (November 3, 1997). "Red Wing shoes is a family affair". Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.
- "At Their Feet, Crafted by Hand", The New York Times, April 20, 2011
- "Red Wing country of origin", Red Wing home page, November 3, 2014
- "Red Wing Recalls Steel Toe Work Boots", Tools of the trade, January 2, 2014
- Marvy, Patrice Avon and Vrooman, Nicholas Curchin, Heart and Sole: A Story of the Red Wing Shoe Company, 1986
- A Pictorial History of Red Wing Shoe Company's First 100 Years, Red Wing Republican Eagle Press, 2005
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