Courtesy Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield, MA

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Sarah Coleman's Shoe

Tradition holds that this shoe was worn by four-year-old Sarah Coleman on her way back from New France in May of 1678. She and other captives were taken there following a September 19, 1677 attack on Hatfield, Massachusetts (south of Deerfield, Massachusetts). This rare, early shoe is primarily constructed of leather and red wool. The sole is made of strips of thick leather, probably cow hide, carefully matched and cut to create a thick but somewhat flexible walking surface. The heel has been layered to create a built-up platform. It was common for the heel of small children's shoes to be integral with the sole. The instep is also leather, although it was worked to become thinner and more pliable. The construction of the shoe is typical of English or French manufacture.

Date: circa 1678 
Topic: Personal 
Materials: Leather, wool, flax,pasteboard
Dimensions: H: 2.5 in.(6.3 cm.), L: 5.12 in.(13 cm.) 
Accession #: 1876.39

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