The Frye Company was founded in 1863 by John A. Frye, a prominent English shoemaker. It is the oldest continuously operated shoe company in the United States. Run for nearly 50 years by Mr. Frye himself his family continued to run the company after his death in 1911 until 1945.
Fryeâ€™s footwear has a long history in America. Worn by Union and Confederate soldiers during America’s Civil War, as well as soldiers in the Spanish- American War including Teddy Roosevelt and his Rough Riders. When New England families started to head West in the mid and late 1800’s, many of these pioneers wore Frye Boots for the long journey.
The Frye Harness Boot has tradition and draws it’s influence from the American Cavalry. During a 1938 trip to Washington, DC, John A. Frye’s grandson and namesake met a U.S. Navy Admiral who noted his difficulty in finding the Wellington style he liked so much. As a favor, John agreed to make him a pair. Frye continued to fill requests for these boots through World War II. By mail order, the company supplied thousands of WWII servicemen with Frye Wellingtons, known as Jet Boots.
Their boots have traveled the world on the feet of U.S. soldiers during countless wars. Today, the classic Harness Boot holds a treasured place in American culture, has been featured in international fashion spreads, and enjoys strong sales in the United States, Europe and Japan.
In the 1960’s, Frye reintroduced the Campus Boot based on its 1860 original. The style boasts a bulky toe and chunky heel that came to embody the attitude and the style of the 60’s and 70’s. There was nothing like it on the market, and consumers began to demand “Original Frye’s.” The Smithsonian Institute, in their search for items to best represent 1960â€™s America, chose a pair of Frye Boots, which proudly remain on display today.
The Frye brand remains true to its heritage and vintage American roots with finely crafted, fashionable boots, shoes, and handbags featuring rich leathers and quality hardware.