Get ready to discover the timeless allure of Converse! Since 1908, these iconic sneakers have been making waves and leaving a lasting impression.
From its humble beginnings in Massachusetts to becoming a global sensation, Converse has a rich history that’s worth exploring.
So, lace up your Chucks and prepare for a journey through 10 incredible facts about these legendary shoes.
Converse has been in operation since 1908.
You may be surprised to learn that Converse has been around for a long time.
The company was founded way back in 1908 in Malden, Massachusetts.
The founder, Marquis Mills Converse, was a manager at a footwear company before starting the Converse Rubber Shoe Company.
It wasn’t until the following year that the first Converse shoes were introduced, on April 30, 1909.
During World War II, Converse produced footwear for the military.
In 1941, the U.S. entered World War II, and Converse was the official shoe used by the U.S. military.
The Converse star rapidly grew to become a patriotic symbol, with troops wearing white high tops while training.
Nike owns Converse.
Competitor Nike had taken an interest in Converse for some time, and in July 2003, they snagged the company for themselves.
Not that it came cheap, though – purchasing Converse cost Nike $309 million! One of Nike’s first moves after the acquisition was to bring back the popular 1970s-style Converse.
A pair of Chucks is sold every 43 seconds.
Or at least, that’s what Nike claimed in 2012 when they made $450 million in sales just from Chucks.
Overall, more than a staggering one billion pairs of Converse have been sold since the company was founded in 1908.
Converse owns a recording studio.
Converse noticed many artists wear their footwear, so they decided to open a state-of-the-art recording studio in Brooklyn, New York, as a way of giving back to the community.
The studio isn’t just an average everyday recording studio but a place to record, jam, and connect with like-minded people for free.
Converse Rubber Tracks is now a global affair with centers in Asia, Europe, and North and South America.
Rocky Wore Chuck Taylor’s.
Everyone remembers Sylvester Stallone in Rocky, famously running up outdoor stairs.
I bet a few of you will have noticed him sporting a pair of Converse for these runs.
This may seem strange; they have no arch or ankle support.
It turns out that in 1970, Converse was seen as a serious athletic shoe before typical thin canvas sneakers came about.
Wilt Chamberlain scored 100 points in a basketball game wearing Chucks.
On March 2, 1962, Philadelphia Warriors smashed the New York Nicks thanks to Chamberlain’s 100-point lead, all while wearing a pair of Chuck Taylors All-Stars – the most popular athletic shoe at the time.
Although there was an audio recording of the game, unfortunately, the game wasn’t televised, and no footage has been recovered.
The general design hasn’t changed for many, many years.
We know that Converse has been around since 1908, which is incredible.
However, the actual design of the shoe hasn’t changed since 1949, and the design of the bottom of the shoe has remained the same, incredibly, since 1923!
This indeed shows just how timeless Converse truly is.
Michael Jordan wore Converse when he won his first Gold Medal.
Basketball legend Michael Jordan’s Olympic debut was in 1984, in which he bagged himself his first-ever Olympic Gold Medal.
Through the Games, he wore a pair of Converse Fastbreak Mids, a shoe that is mostly worn by skaters today.
Fast forward to 2017, and those very same Converse sold at auction for over an eye-watering $190,000.
The Oxfords were invented thanks to the Harlem Globetrotters.
Converse enlisted the Harlem Globetrotters, an American basketball team known for their acrobatics and tricks, to help design its new Chuck Taylor All-Star shoe.
The team chopped off the sneakers’ tops, creating low-cut versions. The players then ran around in these prototypes and tested them out on the court before giving feedback to the designers on how to refine the shape of the low-top collar.
This trial and error process led to the design of Converse’s Chuck Taylor All-Star ‘Ox’ – short for ‘Oxford Cut’ – in 1957.
And there you have it, folks! Converse has proven itself to be more than just a shoe – it’s a cultural phenomenon.
From its pivotal role in history to its timeless design, Converse has left an indelible mark.
So, next time you rock your Chucks, remember the rich heritage they carry. Stay stylish, stay timeless, and keep walking with Converse.