Pattens, Overshoes, Clogs & Galoshes: How Did New Englanders Keep Their Feet Dry Before Elisha Converse?

On Tuesday, October 1st at 6:30 p.m., join Dr. Kimberly Alexander for a discussion of her recently published book Treasures Afoot: Shoe Stories from the Georgian Era.

Shoes reveal important aspects of burgeoning 18th century American identity — self-fashioning, consumption, politics, and agency.  Presenting a series of stories that reveal how shoes were made, sold, and worn during the long eighteenth century, Alexander traces the fortunes and misfortunes of wearers as their footwear was altered to accommodate poor health, flagging finances, and changing styles.  Dr. Alexander will explore the lives and letters of clever apprentices, skilled cordwainers, wealthy merchants, and elegant brides.

Dr. Kimberly Alexander teaches in the History Department of the University of New Hampshire. She has held curatorial positions at several New England Museums, including the MIT Museum, the Peabody Essex Museum and Strawbery Banke.  Dr. Alexander was the Andrew Oliver Research Fellow at the Massachusetts Historical Society (2016-2017) and guest curator of the Society’s 2019 exhibition “Fashioning the New England Family,” and author of a book of the same name.

This lecture is part of Go Local: Converse 2020, an ongoing series celebrating the life and philanthropic contributions of Malden’s first Mayor Elisha Slade Converse and the industrial history of Malden.         Go Local is brought to Malden with federal funds provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Services and administered by the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.  The series will continue through Elisha Converse’s 200th Birthday on July 28, 2020.