Russell Moccasin Co.

Monday, August 5th, 2013 // BY

I recently made a trip up to Berlin, Wisconsin (via Madison) to visit one of those legendary shoe factories that has been doing things the same way since they opened in 1898.  Russell Moccasin makes amazing footwear.  A true moccasin has leather that wraps completely underneath the foot creating a sort of a “hammock.”  This creates a shoe that is not only long lasting, but extremely comfortable as well.  A shoe or moccasin made this way does not require a traditional sole, but most of Russell’s shoes are fitted with any of a number of options from Vibram.

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Many of the Moccasins made by W.C. Russell are custom and made to order.  The quality of the footwear is clear throughout the factory – this is made even more clear by the fact that there are almost as many shoes on the floor for repairs or recrafting as there are new pairs.

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Leather can be seen wrapping all the way around the foot.

 

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TRIPLE vamp construction – most shoes have only a single vamp.

 

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These tacks will be removed one-by-one as the upper is sewn.

 

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Image courtesy of Double Select

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comments For Russell Moccasin Co.

  1. By Arthur Gurtman ON August 26, 2013

    Companies such as Russell MOcassin, Alden, etc. are national treasures. Needless to say, included in that group is Horween, the foundation of all these fine shoe companies.

  2. By Chris ON September 4, 2013

    such an awesome place to visit! I live in Madison and have made the trip UP THERE A COUPLE TIMES. iT’S LIKE ENTERING A DIFFERENT TIME WHEN YOU WALK INTO THAT SHOP AND i LOVE IT. tHAT REMINDS ME…i NEED TO GET SOME NEW SOLES ON MY CHUKKAS.

  3. By h.e.Cauthen, jr. ON November 22, 2013

    i have a pair of russell zephyr boots that were fitted to my feet by the president of wcrussel on the very day that Warren Stafford openend his new store in thomasville georgia. over the years they have grown a bit tighter. i love The style and the boot. Can you people make them easier To slip over my instep. i will pay. can you help. please.
    sonny

  4. By Bill Woodward ON February 11, 2014

    I can only type this in capitol letters. (I’m not yelling!) I own three pairs of Russell boots/shoes.
    1. A pair of Russell Cavalier’s made in French veal. (absolutely wonderful custom made boots!)
    2. A pair of Safari PH boots. I asked Ralph Fabricius when i ordered them if I would need much break in time for them given that i was likely to be walking many miles in them right away. He said, “You will be able to take these boots out of the box, put them on bare foot and walk five miles in them.” He was correct no bologna.. These are the most comfortable footwear I have ever worn.

    3. And finally a pair of Oneida slip on moccasins. They are heaven to wear.
    Russell is very old school and each and every boot or shoes that leaves their shop is a craftsman’s work of art.

    I own many pairs of custom made footwear including Quoddy’s and Raincourts. Russell, in my opinion, is head and shoulders ahead of either one.

  5. By Paul maynard ON July 12, 2014

    Ralph, Patty, Bill and jodi will go out of there way to improve your owned footwear. having suffered frost bite on my feet in january of 14, while framing a custom log home, I SUDDENLY FOUND MYSELF WITH PERMANENT, VARIED NUMBNESS FROM THE BALLS OF MY FEET FORWARD. UPON SOME AGGRESSIVE RESEARCHING I REALIZED THAT POTENTIALLY THE FOOTWEAR I HAD TRADITIONALLY BEEN WEARING MAY HAVE CONTRIBUTED TO MY CIRCUMSTANCE. QUITE SIMPLE, IT WAS TO TIGHT, AS I PRESUME MOST PEOPLES ARE. MY FATHER HAD WORN RUSSELL’S FOR 14 YEARS , PER IRONICALLY MY SUGGESTION. AS I AM A CONTRACTOR AND ROUGH ON BOOTS, I NEGLECTED TO EXTEND THE CAPITAL FOR A PAIR. FORCED TO DO SO, I PURCHASED A PAIR OF 9″ WOODCOCK TLC DOUBLE VAMPS WITH A 1/4″ WEDGE AND NEWPORTER SOLE. immediately, the severe numbness that increased throughout the day, was alleviated by 50 – 70 %. i’m now working with ralph to replace all my footwear. i’m a 5:30 am to 9:00 pm leather boot man, and from hereon, a russell mocassin man!