Tag Archives: A.G. Spalding

Spalding’s Athletic Library

If you are in the US, you probably recognize Spalding as the brand name of a company that makes sporting equipment.  The company has a very long history, being formed by A.G. Spalding in the 1870s.  His first product was baseballs; Spalding himself had been a pitcher for the Chicago White Stockings. Before long his business was making all kinds of sporting equipment.

Spalding got into publishing when he produced an official guide to baseball.  In 1885 he branched off into guides for other sports, and the series became known as Spalding’s Athletic Library.  Eventually the company was publishing around 300 guides.

I did not buy this book, probably from the early 1920s, as I felt like it was too pricy, but I looked on eBay and prices for these guides are all over the place. It’s interesting that women were featured as well as men in the cover art. The company was making items specifically for girls and women by this time.  I have a 1920s gymsuit in my collection.

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Filed under Sportswear, Summer Sports

Ad Campaign – Moc-Abouts 1943

So soft they’re like putty in your hands; yet so sturdy that your kid brother couldn’t wear them out.  These impish moccasin-oxfords were styled by A.G. Spalding for Kay’s Newport… and they’re about the most wonderful shoes afoot.

I’m still in a moccasins sort of mind.  I was actually hopeful that I’d find an ad for my own Philflex Sporties, but I came up empty.  But one interesting observation from looking at dozens of shoe ads from 1938 through 1946 was that sport shoes like these were heavily advertised.  And note that the ad points out how these will be hard to wear out.   That was very important by 1943 when shoes were getting harder and harder to replace.

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Filed under Advertisements, Shoes