Shoe and Boot-Shaped Signs (page 1)

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The photos and links at this page are meant to accompany an article that I wrote for the SCA (Society for Commercial Archeology) Journal.

Shoe Repair [gone]
Santa Monica, CA
Shoe Repair
Los Angeles, CA
Larry's Shoe Repair [gone]
Alameda, CA
Van's Shoes [gone]
Watsonville, CA
Maya Shoe Repair opened in 1970. This sign appeared to be from the 1950s or so. The store closed around 2020 and this sign is gone now.

Harut's Shoe Repair opened around 1980. This sign appears older than that. The store has closed but the sign remains. There is a very similar sign at the Museum of Neon Art in Glendale, CA. [map]

Larry's Shoe Repair was closed but this sign was still there when this photo was taken in 2014. It was removed just a few months later.

The main sign at Van's Shoes was probably from the 1950s. Red Goose Shoes signs were mass-produced but I had not seen one like this before. It is also very unusual to see three different shoe brands (Red Goose, Friedman-Shelby and John C. Roberts) advertised on the same sign. The shoe-shaped sign below that one was probably older. Although it was painted over, you could still make out the word "Renewing" on it. The signs were still there in 2019 but gone by 2020. The Van's Shoe's sign is now at the American Sign Museum in Cincinnati, OH. I don't know if the shoe-shaped sign was saved. The shoe shop had been replaced with a flooring store.

Piedmont Cobblers Shoe Repair [gone]
Oakland, CA
Mike's Shoe Shop [gone]
San Francisco, CA
The holes in the Piedmont Cobblers Shoe Repair sign indicated that it must have had neon at one time. The word "Renewing" must have been backlit originally. This photo is from 2008. Sometime between 2012 and 2014, the business and sign disappeared.

The Mike's Shoe Shop sign had the same design as the one at Piedmont Cobblers. This photo is from 2008. In 2014, the store closed and the sign was removed.

Galletti Brothers Shoe Repair
Battery St.
San Francisco, CA
former Galletti Brothers Shoe Repair
Columbus Ave.
San Francisco, CA
2008: 2014: 2020:
Galletti Brothers Shoe Repair was established in San Francisco in 1905. At one time, there were at least three locations in San Francisco, two in Stockton, and one in Daly City. The Stockton location moved to Lodi and continues to use the Galletti name.

The surviving San Francisco location on Battery Street has two neon skeleton signs in the window of undetermined age: a red loafer (above) and a Galletti text sign. [map]

The sign at the Columbus Ave. location shown above is still there although the store had closed by 2007. The sign might be from the 1950s. By 2009, the sign had been half-covered up with fake ivy by the Italian restaurant below. Evidently, they were tired of people asking where the shoe shop was. In 2018, Barbara Express opened in the space and removed the ivy. The space is used by the Barbara Pinseria & Cocktail Bar next door for takeout and delivery orders. Barbara Express pays tribute to the sign in its moped logo. [map]

There was a very similar sign in town which was installed temporarily but it is gone now.

Heel & I Shoe Repair [gone]
San Francisco, CA
Sunset Shoe Repair
San Francisco, CA
The Heel & I Shoe Repair sign was probably from the 1950s or earlier. It was removed in 2017 when the exterior of the building was renovated. The sign was then sold to a collector.

Sunset Shoe Repair was established in 1900. This sign is probably from the 1950s or earlier. It was repainted sometime after 2010. This photo is from 2014. [map]

K&M Shoe Repair
San Francisco, CA
Schroeder's Shoe Repair
Sacramento, CA
shoe sign [gone]
Sacramento, CA
This K&M Shoe Repair sign is displayed inside Al's Attire. I don't know where this sign came from either. The panels are ripple tin.

The Schroeder's Shoe Repair sign originally advertised for Dun Rite Shoe Repair which was established by the 1940s and moved here around 1958. This sign is probably from the 1940s or 1950s. It obviously had neon originally. There was a Dunn Rite Shoe Repair chain with locations around the country. I don't know if this sign was mass-produced for their stores. [map]

This shoe sign was a modern creation by Dexter Smith as a tribute to United Cobblers which used to occupy the space below. This photo is from 2014. The sign was removed around 2016. For more, see this website.

George's Shoe Comfort & Repair
Los Angeles, CA
shoe repair [gone]
Wilmington, CA
The George's Shoe Comfort & Repair sign is installed very high up on a building closer to the street. It is probably from at least the 1950s. [map]

This shoe repair sign in Wilmington was probably from the 1920s or 1930s. The shoe store was long gone. It was probably backlit with opal glass originally. The panels were made from ripple tin. These photos are from 2014. The sign was repainted sometime after this 2010 photo. It disappeared around 2020.

Veges Shoe Repairing
Pueblo, CO
Salzman's Shoe & Boot Repair
Greeley, CO
Veges Shoe Repairing opened in 1919. It is believed to be the oldest shoe repair store in Colorado. The sign has always advertised for Veges and is probably from the 1940s or 1950s. It is about four feet wide, and it is still lit at night. [map]

Salzman's Shoe & Boot Repair opened in 1935. I don't know if this sign is from then. The store closed in 2017 but the sign remains. [map]

Boston Shoes to Boots
Yankton, SD
Ralph Martin Shoe Repair [gone]
Delaware, OH
The Boston Shoes to Boots opened in 1915. The sign may have been built in the 1950s or earlier. This painted sign had neon originally. The tubing holes are visibly patched directly under the letters, indicating that the wording is original. According to the original owner, the name "Boston" was used because the finest shoes were believed to have been produced in that city. [map]

Ralph Martin Shoe Repair opened in 1961 and this sign was installed in 1963. The store closed in 2019 and the sign was removed. It was sold to an antiques dealer.

Miller Shoe Parlor
Jackson, MI
Mike's Shoe Hospital [gone]
Clinton, IA
Mitchem's Shoe Repair
Richmond, VA
The Miller Shoe Parlor opened in 1912. The porcelain panel sign is eleven feet wide and was installed in 1928. It was designed by J.C. Shotwell, a department store merchandiser, who worked nights in the shoe shop and persuaded the owner to have the sign built. When the store moved in 1976, the sign was brought along. The previous store was located on the second floor and had a neon arrow pointing upwards. When the store moved to new space on the ground floor, the neon tubing for "UPSTAIRS" was removed. The tubing holes are still visible under the repainted area where it now reads "SHOES." The sign is still lit at night with red letters and the shoe is outlined with white. For more, see these websites: 1 and 2. [map]

Mike's Shoe Hospital closed in 2009 just after this photo was taken and the sign was removed.

The Mitchem's Shoe Repair sign had neon originally. This photo is from 2004. Around 2011, Mitchem's moved to a new location. The sign was repainted and is now installed flat against the building. [map]

Shoe and Boot Signs
(page 2)
Shoe and Boot Signs
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