Where is it from?

Association locations map

Shoes - M. & A. Paddle, White Leather, circa 1901-1911 Object Reg. No: SH 900122

Pair of white leather baby's shoes, used in Albert Park, Melbourne, circa 1909-1911. Acquired in 1990 during the South Melbourne Oral History project. They were worn by the donor at the age of 18 months - 2 years. She kept the shoes as a childhood memento.

The Museum of Victoria undertook the South Melbourne Oral History project to document the domestic lives of people in South Melbourne. Liza Dale curated the project, and Karen Twigg was the oral history co-ordinator. Marilyn Lake was the Latrobe University supervisor, and students interviewed the South Melbourne residents. The project was funded by the Victorian Women's Trust. The Museum holds files and transcripts, as well as a disc containing transcripts.
Pair of white leather baby shoes with button-up ankle strap. Leather has been given a satin finish and is lined with white cloth. The shoes have been soled with white leather.
Acquisition Information:
Donation from Mrs Aldred
Discipline: History
Dimensions: 4.30 cm (Height), 5.00 cm (Width), 12.00 cm (Length)
Dimension Comment: Size: 2

More information

Tagged with: keepsakes, 1454
Themes this item is part of: Aldred Collection, South Melbourne Oral History Project Collection, Childhood & Youth Collection, Clothing & Textiles Collection, Domestic & Community Life Collection
Primary Classification: CLOTHING
Secondary Classification: Infant
Tertiary Classification: footwear
Inscriptions: Stamped on the insole: 'M & A Paddle/No 2029'.
Date Used: Albert Park, Victoria, Australia, 1909-1911
References: 'Paddle Brothers' Children's Footwear', Australian Leather Journal, Boot and Shoe Recorder, 16 July 1923, p.288.

The Australian National University holds an album of photographs of Paddle shoe samples taken in 1946 - Paddle Brothers Pty Ltd Archive Series.

The National Archives hold several images of manufacturing Paddle shoes in 1959: 1200:L31892, 200:L31893 and A1200:L31894.


Roslyn Connor Posted on 17 Jan 2010 6:03 PM
I am interested in the Paddle family. Do any of them still survive? One of my husband's great uncles was married to Matilda Jane Paddle and had three children but I don't know what happened to them or the shoe factory
Discovery Centre Posted on 18 Jan 2010 2:50 PM
Museum Victoria Comment
Hi Roslyn, thanks for your enquiry. We've referred this to one of our History & Technology staff for their advice. We’ll get back to you soon with some more information.
Discovery Centre Posted on 27 Jan 2010 11:34 AM
Museum Victoria Comment
Hi Roslyn. Something very interesting happened today. One of the Paddle family actually came in today to give us information about the family and the factory after seeing you comment online. He tells us that the company was sold in 1982 to Rivers. The Melbourne and Mornington factories were demolished but the Ballarat one still stands.
Sam Bett nee Paddle Posted on 10 Aug 2010 5:34 PM
My dad worked @ Paddle Shoes and it is his familys factory
Darryl Chamberlain Posted on 23 Dec 2010 10:03 AM
Hi Roslyn, my mum was Verna paddle, and her father and his brothers started the shoe business. Mum is still alive and living in West Rosebud.


Olivia Posted on 19 Jan 2011 9:05 AM
My partner's late grandmother worked for Paddle Bros when she was 13. This would have been around 1926. An inspector came to the factory and told her she couldn’t work there until she was 15. So she left Paddle Bros and went to another boot factory where she put her age up. She said dressmaking paid only 7 shillings and sixpence, while the boot trade paid 19 shillings.
Sevim Posted on 26 Feb 2011 9:44 PM
My dad was the chief designer/pattern cutter at the Mornington factory in Murray St for many years. I used to go to work with him sometimes (as a special treat.) I remember it so well and also the beautiful smell of leather. I would have been about 10 Years old, so around 1974.
Heather Ann Paddle Olney Posted on 23 Mar 2011 11:34 AM
The Paddle shoe company belonged to relatives of mine that I only learned of approximately 12 years ago. There are still family members in England and a large part of the family is located in Ontario and British Columbia Canada.
Darryl Chamberlain Posted on 11 Jul 2011 9:40 PM
Roslyn, in my previous comment, I wasn't entirely correct with what I said. The business was actually started by my Mum's great grandfather Joseph and his sons. sorry for the mis-information.


Brendon McGuire Posted on 22 Apr 2013 5:33 PM
Joseph Paddle was my great, great, great grandfather.
Matilda Jane Paddle is his daughter, the sister of my great, great grandfather Arthur.
There is alot of information on Ancestry.com
Does anyone know who M & A Paddle stands for?
From our family oral history I gather there was a falling out between Arthur and one of his brothers but I would love to patch things up.
Donna Reeves Posted on 27 Apr 2013 4:09 PM
My husband and I now own 'paddles' the property at Tumut. This belonged to the 'paddles' family a long time ago.
Beautiful place.
Virginia JOy Lowe (nee Paddle) Posted on 24 May 2013 2:13 PM
My father was Norman Paddle, son of Herbert, who was one of Joseph's sons. I have a photo of Joseph and his sons, and several articles about the shoe factory, also a big portrait photo of Herbert. My brother Robert Paddle has a son Seth, so the name lives on in our branch. if anyone is interested I can look it all up for them (bit busy right at the moment). But if they contacted me.
We lived in Colac until i was ten, and we used to go into the factory and see all the samples and choose a couple of pairs for the next six months or a year, and they measured us up, and a big box would come with the new shoes in - it was exciting. I love the sample room, such an array!
I'm sure I could also work out who M and A were, too, Brendon.
Get in touch, anyone who is interested. Virginia
Lesley Tran Posted on 24 Jul 2013 5:25 PM
I used to know someone in the early 70's who said he was Frank Paddle, adopted son of one of the paddle shoe families. He was on parole at the time. He called himself Noel Pederson. Any idea where he is now?
wendy evans Posted on 25 Aug 2013 4:41 PM
paddle shoes had a factory on the corner of beach rd & moorabbin rd ( now warrigal rd in the 40's & 50's the paddle family either lived or had a holiday house in dixon st mentone just west of warrigal rd.i'd love to know more
Marjorie Gardner (nee Kitchingman) Posted on 08 Nov 2013 8:46 PM
The part of the family Paddle shoes I knew had a farm in Templestowe where they also kept horses (thoroughbreds) and some horses for their daughter I think her name was Erica Paddle I cannot remember her parents name but I used to ride horses there. Would be great if I could contact Erica.
Marj Gardner
Catherine Paddle Posted on 20 Feb 2014 6:46 PM
My grandfather was Stephen Paddle & worked for the shoe company for many years. My father Garth Paddle never worked for the family busy. There are still many family members in Victoria.
Annie Olsson Posted on 19 Apr 2014 10:38 PM
Dear Wendy my great grandmother and grandfather lived in the home on the corner of warrigal and beach road mentone and as children my sisters and I would visit often as my grandmother and aunty were also living there, I believe it was originally the factory where the children's shoes were made. Annie Olsson
Jenni Posted on 25 May 2014 8:52 PM
I have found a large photo of the staff of Paddles, over 50 years ago and also photo of members of their football team.
Stewart Paddle Posted on 03 Jan 2015 3:58 PM
What a fascinating list of comments! I am Stewart, son of Herbert (aka Bert), grandson of Stephen (aka Steve), and great-grandson of Joseph (mentioned above). Darryl Chamberlain's mother, Verna, is my sister, and Catherine's father, Garth, is my cousin. My other sister, Marion Davenport (nee Paddle) now lives in Kyneton, and my brother, Ray, who managed the final Paddle factory at Sebastopol (a suburb of Ballarat) now lives at Meridan Plains, Queensland. All four of us are now "getting on" a bit! My father, Bert, had four brothers, Fred, Steve, Cyril and Eric. My father, Bert, started the first Paddle factory in Ballarat during World War 2. I remember coming on visits to Ballarat with him, and came to love the City. Like Garth, I never worked in the footwear business. I became first, an Education Officer in the RAAF, and subsequently a Presbyterian Minister, serving out the years of my Ministry in and around Ballarat. I have now been retired for 27 years. and live quietly in Ballarat. Thank you to all the above contributors for this fascinating cameo of family history. Well done!
Brian Davenport. Posted on 03 Jan 2015 7:40 PM
Hi my wife Marion is a Paddle, the daughter of Bert Paddle and these stories and little pieces of history have brought back many memories for her as she recalled many of the names mentioned. Marion spent many hours at the Ballarat factory and she also has the history of the start of the Mornington factory. For me as a researcher on a n umber offamily history there is a wealth of information that is around, it is just a matter of clicking into the right program. Many thanks for the memories for Marion to look back on.

Add your comment

  • Museum Victoria does not provide valuations, for more information please visit the valuation infosheet
  • Please note that Museum Victoria staff will not normally respond to comments posted on our website.
Yes No