Converse History

It all started in 1908, when Marquis M. Converse opened the Converse Rubber shoe Company in Malden , Massachusetts. The company begun as a rubber shoe manufacturer, which offered winterized rubber soled footwear for men, women, and children.
By 1910 the Converse Company was producing 4,000 shoes daily, but it wasn't until 1912, that the company first started producing athletic shoes for tennis.

In 1917, basketball was revolutionized by the introduction of the world's first performance basketball shoes, the Converse All Star.
A year later, Charles H. Taylor, a basketball player from the Akron Firestones, acquired his first pair of All Star shoes, and while wearing his Converse shoes, he introduced basketball as a sport to Americans across the country.

Charles Chuck Taylor officially joined Converse in 1921 as America 's first player endorser; Chuck's signature was added two years later in the All Star patch.
Converse shoes kept growing, and steamed ahead through the 30's as the nation's interest in basketball increased.

As Converse became a synonym of basketball, the Converse Chuck Taylor All Star became the basketball shoes for professionals and high school teams throughout the country. By the mid 30s Chuck transformed the basketball world once again, this time he invented the modern basket ball, a stitch less leather ball provided with a genuine bounce.

In 1936 basketball had its Olympic debut, and was finally played as an Official Olympic sport for the first time; the U.S team defeated Canada wearing Converse All Star shoes.
In December of 1941 America entered the World War II, taking Converse into a new phase. That year Converse changed its production, and started to manufacture boots, rubber protective suits, and ponchos for pilots and troops.

Converse company designed the A6 Flying Boot worn by the U.S. Army Air Corps.
During the war all soldiers worn Chuck Taylor All Star shoes, and even after it these shoes remain the usual government-issue athletic shoes for military training.

For its war efforts Converse received a number of honors from the Army, Navy, and U.S. Treasury.
Hollywood also helped Converse shoes, when actors and other celebrities started to wear them it launched Converse shoes into a whole new profile, they were starting to become an American icon.
Converse shoes became the number one footwear among the teenagers, who wore them as a symbol of youth rebellion in the 50´s.

They were usually worn with jeans by the boys and with skirts and ankle socks by the girls. This fashion was finally legitimate by the movie legend, James Dean, who was photographed wearing jeans and white Chucks.
Throughout the 60´s and 70´s Converse launched a variety of products for basketball, football, track and many other sports.

Converse continued to be popular on the 70´s and 80´s as they remain a symbol of rebellion.
But it was in the late 80´s that Converse, although its popularity started to go under.
The footwear industry was entering in a new period, one that involved technology and improvement.
In an attempt to compete with the birth of new competitors, Converse invested in a biomechanics research lab, despite this it couldn't keep up with the constant release of the competitor's new technologies.
It was a series of unfortunate events and bad decisions which lead Converse to file for bankruptcy in 2001.
In June, 2003 Converse accepted Nike's offer to buy out the company for the amount of $305 million, and ever since then Converse is owned by Nike.

In present days many Converse classics have been re-released, but for some people Chuck Taylor's All Star shoes haven't been the same since the footwear giant Nike.
Despite what sales indicate, Converse shoes still are a part of the American history, and always will be.

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