Friday, October 31, 2014
One of the most unusual items found in old Amana washhouses were the wooden shoes worn by the women to keep their feet dry while working in the wash house that was attached to or near the community kitchen. Wooden shoes or clogs are used worldwide, the form may vary from culture to culture but within the culture the form often remained the same for centuries. In Amana, they were wooden platforms with leather uppers, wooden soles, all hand made by the local cobbler, at one time, housed in the corner Otte house I grew up in. Traditionally the wooden shoes were worn in heavy labor as in the Amana washhouses. Today, universally, they are worn as a fashion statement or for different styles of dance and collectibles.