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Community Member
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎12-03-2002

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

Can anyone tell me what I might expect to get on ebay for this authentic pair of WWI hobnail boots?
Thanks!
Cheryl



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springfld.arsenal
Community Member
Posts: 3,832
Registered: ‎07-05-2004

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
Could you educate me a little-I have never seen "authentic WWI hobnail boots" and would like to know how you can tell that is what they are? The style looks fairly modern to me, so it shows I don't know much about footware.
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I collect fine cannon models, full-size antique cannons and artillery accouterments.
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Community Member
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎12-03-2002

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
Well, it is not because of my education, I can assure you that! :smileyhappy: I have an old Drucker trunk full of WWI uniform clothing and gear. I have 2 pairs of pants, 2 jackets, 1 overcoat, 3 pairs of leggings, 1 gas mask, 1 mess kit, 1 pair dogtags, 2 hats, 1 helmet, 1 hood, 1 pouch with ammo, 1 empty small pouch, 1 larger pouch with a metal container (don't know what it is), and that is all I can remember off of the top of my head. I can find just about everything else on ebay except for these boots, which is why I am asking here. :smileyhappy:
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Community Member
Posts: 991
Registered: ‎01-23-2003

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
What nationality does this collection represent? Maybe an indication that it was American, British, German, etc. we might be able to help better. The nationality affects the value. I have some reference books which might include these (or similar) but have no idea where to start. BTW: Boots like this are still worn in Europe and a note of all markings might help (the photos make the boots appear to be fairly modern).
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Community Member
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎12-03-2002

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
They are American, at least the uniforms are. Inside are some markings that are hard to read but this is the most I can make out:
GEO. E. KEITH COMPANY
BOSTON DEPOT
E 112031N
SPEC NO. 1257
CONTRACT 233
O.M.C.U.S.A.
NO. 8

Then on the bottom, on the soul is No.15 M.C.U.S.A.

I might be off a bit, but I am pretty sure that is what it says. Thanks for all of the help! :smileyhappy:
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springfld.arsenal
Community Member
Posts: 3,832
Registered: ‎07-05-2004

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
George E. Keith was in Brockton MA and was in business from late 1800's thru post-WWII era sometime. They certainly could have produced shoes under Quartermaster Corps contract for either World War. I can't tell from the markings anything about the date of manufacture, unfortunately.
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I collect fine cannon models, full-size antique cannons and artillery accouterments.
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Community Member
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎12-03-2002

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
Is there anything I should look for? There are more numbers and markings...just hard to make out...let me know if I should look for anything in particular.
Thanks! :smileyhappy:
Cheryl
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Community Member
Posts: 991
Registered: ‎01-23-2003

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
cyber: All info is important at this point. I noticed these are size 8 ("NO. 8") boots. "O.M.C.U.S.A." is probably "Q.M.C. U.S.A." (Quartermaster Corps, United States Army). "SPEC NO. 1257 CONTRACT 233" seems to indicate ca. WWI at this point, a date should be listed in the area - perhaps this is one of the "more numbers and markings". "No.15 M.C.U.S.A." can really mean a number of things at this point. All the writing has to be put into context still. SA is the resident expert for contract info. I'm going to look these up in my library, but it may be a while before I get the answers.
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Community Member
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎12-03-2002

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
Ok...there is another faint stamp inside, that says something like:
C.F. SHIELDS (maybe)
INSPECTOR
BOSTON DEPOT

Then on the bottom there is another number that says:
6E
INSPECTOR NO. 25

And you are right about the O, it is actually a Q.

Thanks again for all of your help! :smileyhappy:
Cheryl
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Community Member
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎12-03-2002

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
I think I found a pair on a website but it doesn't give a value!

Here is the site:
http://www.oryansroughnecks.org/uniforms.html

They look like the "Field Shoe"
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i.gather.so
Community Member
Posts: 1,318
Registered: ‎05-19-2009

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
You would probably have more luck by searching out "Pershing boots"

Remember that size is important with uniforms and I think that this would hold true even for these. The larger sizes get premium prices. Nonetheless this is a good find.
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springfld.arsenal
Community Member
Posts: 3,832
Registered: ‎07-05-2004

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
Well your shoe looks very much like the M1917 Field Shoe pictured in the link in post no. 9. I can't pick out any significant differences. The heel cleat and the hobnails look very similar, as does the leather piecing.

Your pair is in remarkable "new" condition for a leather product made during WWI. I hope they wind up in a museum somewhere!
*************** What follows is sig line*************
I collect fine cannon models, full-size antique cannons and artillery accouterments.
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Community Member
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎12-03-2002

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
Thanks again for all of the help. What is the best way to list these uniforms and boots? Should I list all together, meaning all the pieces in one auction or should I seperate and list them piece by piece? What do you think would bring me the best price?
Thanks again,
Cheryl
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springfld.arsenal
Community Member
Posts: 3,832
Registered: ‎07-05-2004

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
>trunk full of WWI uniform clothing and gear. I have 2 pairs of pants, 2 jackets, 1 overcoat, 3 pairs of leggings, 1 gas mask, 1 mess kit, 1 pair dogtags, 2 hats, 1 helmet, 1 hood, 1 pouch with ammo, 1 empty small pouch, 1 larger pouch with a metal container (don't know what it is),

This sounds like a very attractive grouping to me, especially since the dogtags will identify the original owner.

I think you should do a bit of research on the man to identify his unit, its history, etc. I think that would enhance the value of the grouping, since usually an identified "grouping" such as this will sell for more than its parts.

Borrow a manikin to wear the items for pictures if possible. I would do a featured auction (worth the extra $20. in this case) and consider putting a modest reserve on it so it isn't outright "stolen" if the serious WWI collectors happen to all be on vacation that week.
*************** What follows is sig line*************
I collect fine cannon models, full-size antique cannons and artillery accouterments.
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Community Member
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎12-03-2002

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
Thanks again for the help. May I ask what a "modest reserve" might be? I really have no idea. Thanks!
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springfld.arsenal
Community Member
Posts: 3,832
Registered: ‎07-05-2004

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
I have no idea what the rest of the stuff looks like, so I can't advise at all on price questions. If the original owner had a colorful history you can find out about, this would be reflected in pricing. What's on the dogtags? Bet someone would track down something based on that if you post it here.
*************** What follows is sig line*************
I collect fine cannon models, full-size antique cannons and artillery accouterments.
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Community Member
Posts: 991
Registered: ‎01-23-2003

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
Post #7: I finally found a match in my catalogs. In March 1984 an authenticated pair was sold for $24 by a well-known US militaria auction house. From 1984-2005, I can find very similar ones with wide price fluctuations that are out of proportion to the condition. An exact pair could be in this list but the descriptions are too vague to positive ID. It appears that the better (more accurate and authenticated)descriptions receive the higher sell prices - if offered by a reputable dealer.
Post #15: Absolutely correct in answer to the question.
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i.gather.so
Community Member
Posts: 1,318
Registered: ‎05-19-2009

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
I don't know what size the boots are but if they are anywhere around 10 they would likely get around 300 to 500.

If they are very small, under 7 you won't get as much interest if they are larger you will get more interest.

Several factors will affect this:

They are authentic period shoes
They are accurately presented as such in a credible manner
The right buyers are looking at the time you offer them

Contrary to what may seem logical some of the items that you think are more desirable in your grouping aren't necessarily more valuable. Footwear gets good money because a lot of it was worn out after the war while the uniform items were hung up in closets or packed up in trunks.

Unless you have an personal interest in researching this type of thing you would probably do just as well making a good presentation of the lot and let words and pictures do their magic, you won't have a lack of enthusiastic bidders.
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springfld.arsenal
Community Member
Posts: 3,832
Registered: ‎07-05-2004

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
I agree that it is likely the shoes will be the highlight of the grouping, since they are new or nearly so, and have to be very scarce in that condition. As a minimum, post a good scan or photo of the dogtag so all of it is legible, so potential buyers can check it out. Some will be able to find info on the unit and perhaps person very quickly and it will influence their bidding.
*************** What follows is sig line*************
I collect fine cannon models, full-size antique cannons and artillery accouterments.
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Community Member
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎12-03-2002

WWI Hobnail Boots - Value?

in reply to cyberspace_collectibles
How does a person find out information regarding the unit or person? I am trying to look online but can't find any info. I have the pictures taken and want to try to list the stuff tomorrow but would like to find that information if I can. Any help is appreciated.
Thanks! :smileyhappy:
Cheryl
Here is link to the pictures:
http://www.cyberspacecollectibles.net/wwi/wwi.htm
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