Made by the International Shoe Company to promote its HyTest Safety Shoes brand, “One Ounce of Safety,” a 1940s black-and-white safety film produced “in the interests of foot safety.” Set in a steel plant, the film stresses the importance of safety shoes, and in one demonstration at mark 03:43 illustrates the point as the plant supervisor whacks his reinforced-tip shoe with a hammer. The point’s driven home when a metal rod falls on the foot of a worker at mark 04:26. Waking up in the hospital the man learns the accident caused him three of his toes — because of insufficient shoe safety. Back on the job the man realizes some of this co-workers walked with a similar limp — “all toe accidents” he says at mark 06:50 — just a few of the more than 60,000 similar injuries that take place annually. To prevent further injury the man heads to his company’s safety shoe store (mark 07:10) to purchase a pair of comfortable Hy-Test Safety Shoes. The film also points out the naysayer at the plant (mark 09:45), a man who thinks specialized safety shoes are unnecessary and too expensive. “Could you afford not to wear safety shoes?” the narrator asks at mark 11:04. The film continues as a safety shoes is deconstructed with an emphasis on the one-ounce steel tip (mark 12:33). To sway his co-worker’s, a plant employee lends his reluctant pal a pair of his safety shoes. Good thing as at mark 17:52 the man drops a heavy steel bar on his foot — only to be protected by his Hy-Test Safety Shoe.
HyTest brand remains in use to this day: http://www.hytest.com/ In addition to steel toe, Hytest's line today includes composite toe, metatarsal guard, and heat/oil resistant work boots.
The International Shoe Company formed in 1911 when two of St. Louis' largest shoe companies Roberts, Johnson & Rand and Peters Shoe Company merged. World War II gave International Shoe a major opportunity, as it was the only shoe company large enough to bid for all the business of the U.S. Army. The company had 30,000 employees and became by far the U.S. government's largest supplier of footwear during the war, despite opposition by labor unions. Consumer demand also increased, and in 1944 International Shoe once again reached its 1929 production levels.
By 1950, International Shoe had the capability to make 70 million pairs of shoes a year; its businesses also included tanneries, rubber heels, cement, containers, and material for shoe linings. Rand's death the previous year began a change in the company's outlook as the Rand family influence began to decrease. Frank Rand's sons Edgar E. Rand and Henry H. Rand both served as president, but the company began a period of diversification due to the influence of Maurice R. Chambers even before he became president in 1962. Major acquisitions included high-end shoe maker Florsheim in 1952, Canada's largest shoe maker Savage Shoes, Ltd. in 1954, and Caribe Shoe Corporation of Puerto Rico in 1958. That last deal led to the closing of a plant in Chester, Illinois, that had operated since 1916 and was making 5,000 shoes a day. A retail division began in 1959, and International Shoe began buying companies in other countries and even in businesses other than shoes. International Shoe Company became Interco Inc. on March 1, 1966.
We encourage viewers to add comments and, especially, to provide additional information about our videos by adding a comment! See something interesting? Tell people what it is and what they can see by writing something for example: "01:00:12:00 -- President Roosevelt is seen meeting with Winston Churchill at the Quebec Conference."
This film is part of the Periscope Film LLC archive, one of the largest historic military, transportation, and aviation stock footage collections in the USA. Entirely film backed, this material is available for licensing in 24p HD, 2k and 4k. For more information visit http://www.PeriscopeFilm.com