Here’s a neat recent thrift find: A pair of never-worn Florsheim Royal Imperial “longwing” wingtips in what Florsheim called “black cashmere calf” pebble grain leather. Royal Imperials were Florsheim’s top-of-the-line shoes, with five nails in the ball of the foot for stability, 64 nails and a V-cleat in the heel for long life, and faux wood-grain finish on the soles just because it showed they cared. Big wingtips like this are often referred to as “gunboats” because they’re big, heavy, and indestructible.

These are likely from the 1960s or 70s.


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