Shoe of the Month – Cobbler’s foot

Shoe of the Month – Cobbler’s foot

This three-legged iron cobbler’s foot was an essential part of a cobbler’s kit and also for home repairing. It consists of three iron feet on which a different size boot or shoe can be held with the sole upturned, so it can be repaired, or nails can be hammered in.

A cobbler mends shoes. A shoemaker makes shoes. It has always been considered insulting to call a shoemaker a cobbler. So, you should never get the two mixed up – even though a shoemaker often mends shoes as well.

Cobblers Last

Cobblers Last

The Stories of the Soldiers The Military Galleries Introductory Case- Abington Park Museum

The Stories of the Soldiers
The Military Galleries Introductory Case- Abington Park Museum

Louise Hannam-Jones
History Curator at Northampton Museums and Art Gallery

Over the next few months we will be revealing the stories of the soldiers in our new Military Galleries Introductory Case at Abington Park Museum. Each month will highlight a different soldier on our blog. After reading about the individuals who served in the Northamptonshire Regiment and Northamptonshire Yeomanry, visit the case at Abington Park Museum to see their medals in person.

 Lance Corporal Robert James (Jim) Eldridge

The Northamptonshire Regiment, The 5th Battalion

21st June 1923 – 3rd January 2017

Image Courtesy of Mrs Christine Gibson,
daughter of Lance Corporal Robert James Eldridge

 

The Italy Star 1943 – 1945 – awarded for services in Sicily and Italy during 1943 – 1945.

Defence Medal 1939 – 1945 – awarded for services during the Second World War.

1939 – 1945 Star– awarded for services during the Second World War.

The Africa Star 1940 – 1943 – awarded for services in North Africa during 1940 – 1943.

War Medal 1939 – 1945 – awarded for a minimum of 28 days service during the Second World War.

Jim Eldridge served in the 5th Battalion of the Northamptonshire Regiment in the Second World War. Originally from Southampton, he joined the Northamptonshire Regiment from the Hampshire Regiment in 1943 when he was 19 years old.

Jim was initially posted to North Africa and fought in a number of actions including the attack on the Goubellat Plain and the final battle for Tunis in Tunisia. He then moved to Sicily where the 5th Battalion were involved in the attack at Catenanuova and the capture of Bronte.
Jim served the rest of the war on the Italian Front and took part in the final offensive ‘Operation Grapeshot’ in Italy.

At the end of the war, the 5th Battalion moved into Austria, carrying out duties including evacuating enemy troops out of the area and manning posts on the Yugoslav border until they were disbanded in 1946. Following this, Jim returned to Southampton and worked in a Grocery warehouse. He married Beaula in 1949 and in 1951 their daughter Christ

The Stories of the Soldiers The Military Galleries Introductory Case- Abington Park Museum

The Stories of the Soldiers
The Military Galleries Introductory Case- Abington Park Museum

Louise Hannam-Jones
History Curator at Northampton Museums and Art Gallery

Over the next few months we will be revealing the stories of the soldiers in our new Military Galleries Introductory Case at Abington Park Museum. Each month will highlight a different soldier on our blog. After reading about the individuals who served in the Northamptonshire Regiment and Northamptonshire Yeomanry, visit the case at Abington Park Museum to see their medals in person.

 Private John (Jack) Thomas Higginbottom

The Northamptonshire Regiment, The 7th Battalion

7th March 1894 – 14th November 1985

Image-2_Jack-Higginbottom-(

Image Courtesy of Jane Barker,
Granddaughter of Private John Thomas Higginbottom

Medals-Jack-Higginbottom

1914 – 1915 Star – awarded for service in the First World War during 1914 – 1915.

British War Medal 1914 – 1918 – awarded for service in the First World War.

Victory Medal 1914 – 1919 – awarded for service in the First World War.

Elizabeth II Imperial Service Medal – awarded for long and efficient service.

Jack Higginbottom served in the 7th Battalion of the Northamptonshire Regiment. This battalion was raised by the celebrated rugby player Edgar Mobbs and known as the ‘Mobbs’ Own’.
Jack was originally from Northamptonshire and worked in the shoe industry
before enlisting into the regiment in 1915.

As Private 17140, he was posted to the ‘B’ Company of the 7th Battalion and remained with them until his discharge on 23rd March 1919. Jack took part in many significant actions in France on the Western Front, including the Battle of the Somme in 1916 and the Third Battle of Ypres in 1917.
His final actions comprised of the concluding advance in Picardy in 1918.

After the war Jack worked in the stores at the Army Ordnance Depot in Weedon. In 1921 he married Catherine Woodward and they had five children. He retired from the depot in 1959 after 40 years and was awarded the Elizabeth II Imperial Service Medal for many years of service.

Shoe of the Month-Cows Wear Shoes

Cows wear shoes

It is not just humans that wear shoes, animals can wear them to protect their hooves or paws.

This flat kidney-shaped plate has square holes for nails which attached it to a cow’s hoof. The upright metal flap was bent over the hoof top to secure it. It protected the cow’s hoof when it walked to market. This example is made from iron and dates from around the 1880s

Cow Shoe

Cow Shoe

Moon Boots

Volunteers can be very interested in the objects they work with. Here is a blog post by one of our volunteers Carly Dakin.

Moon Boots

This year the world has been celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landings. Perhaps one of the most iconic images associated with the landings is the footprint left behind on the moon’s surface by astronaut Neil Armstrong.

It is said that on seeing this iconic image the Italian designer Giancarlo Zanatta was inspired by the shape and technology of the astronauts’ boots and began to design and develop a snow boot for sports-wear, it came to be known as the Moon Boot. Zanatta’s company Tecnica registered the trademark name Moon Boot© worldwide in 1978.

The boot, designed to be worn after skiing, has a thin rubber outsole and cellular rubber midsole, is covered by nylon fabrics and with a waterproof PVC sole which has great traction. The fastening incorporates crisscross lacing. The boots come in sizes small, medium or large, there is no left or right foot due to the boot’s polyester form lining. The popularity of the moon boot has changed over the years, originally favoured by those taking part in winter sports its popularity spread to a more mainstream audience in the early 2000’s. We have a red pair in the collection at Northampton Shoe Museum which were donated to us in 2006. Tecnica still produce these boots today so you could still add them to your winter wardrobe 50 years from ‘launch’

Moon-Boots

Moon-Boots

 

The Stories of the Soldiers The Military Galleries Introductory Case- Abington Park Museum

The Stories of the Soldiers
The Military Galleries Introductory Case- Abington Park Museum

Louise Hannam-Jones
History Curator at Northampton Museums and Art Gallery

Over the next few months we will be revealing the stories of the soldiers in our new Military Galleries Introductory Case at Abington Park Museum. Each month will highlight a different soldier on our blog. After reading about the individuals who served in the Northamptonshire Regiment and Northamptonshire Yeomanry, visit the case at Abington Park Museum to see their medals in person.

 Regimental Sergeant Major George A. Jelley MBE

The Northamptonshire Yeomanry, The 1st Northamptonshire Yeomanry

2nd October 1898 – 4th October 1986

Image Courtesy of the Northamptonshire Yeomanry Association Benevolent Fund

AHDB1298

MBE – awarded for service in the Territorial Army.

British War Medal 1914 – 1918 – awarded for service in the First World War.

Victory Medal 1914 – 1919 – awarded for service in the First World War.

1939 – 1945 Star– awarded for service during the Second World War.

France and Germany Star 1944 – 1945– awarded for service in North West Europe during 1944 – 1945.

Defence Medal 1939 – 1945– awarded for services during the Second World War.

Territorial Efficiency Medal King George V – awarded for long service in the Territorial Army.

Territorial Efficiency Medal King George VI – awarded for long service in the Territorial Army.

War Medal (MID) 1939 – 1945- awarded for a minimum of 28 days service during the Second World War with Oakleaf emblem for those mentioned in dispatches.

Coronation Medal 1953 – awarded to commemorate the Coronation of Elizabeth II in 1953.


George A. Jelley spent most of his life serving as a soldier. Although underage, he joined the Royal Artillery at 17 years old in 1916. He served with the Northamptonshire Yeomanry from 1920 until 1967.

In the Second World War George served as Regimental Sergeant Major of the 1st Northamptonshire Yeomanry. He was involved in a number of actions such as ‘Operation Overlord’ in the Normandy campaign, the conflict in Holland in 1944, and the Rhine Crossings campaign to push the German Army across the Rhine in Belgium and Holland in 1945.

After the war, George returned to Northampton and worked as a checker for the Northampton Brewery Company. He also continued to be active in the Northamptonshire Yeomanry Territorial Army and was Secretary for the Northamptonshire Yeomanry Association until 1984.

In 1957 he was granted an MBE for his services and in 1967 he became the longest serving member of the Territorial Army in the country with 51 years’ service.

 

Shoe of the Month-Shoe Stories

Shoe Stories

There are many interesting stories to be told about how we choose the shoes we wear.

Reggie Spittles, who was a Northampton resident, purchased this style of shoe in the 1930s. Having left school Reggie began working at the Crockett & Jones shoe factory and at the age of sixteen he had saved enough money to join a Shoe Club.

‘The Shoe Club comprised of 12 men who agreed to pay one shilling (5p) each for 13 weeks. After this period you were given a ticket to take to the shoe shop and you could select a pair of shoes to the value of 12 shillings (60p)…The reason you paid for 13 weeks was for the organiser to have for his efforts a pair of shoes for free. My choice was always a pair of black Oxfords with a pointed toe cap.’

Reggie Spittles, 2012