This is Jerry. He has one of the most important and skilled jobs at the factory. He works in the Second Making department and is in charge of trimming and scouring each and every boot that passes through the factory. This means he receives the boot or shoe after the sole and heel is attached, and he must trim down all of the excess to make the heels and soles smooth and presentable. In the process, the belts used for sanding move so quickly that they can take your skin off in the blink of an eye- this is why Jerry wears a pair of makeshift leather half gloves to protect his hands.
Jerry is also an Army veteran who was deployed and served oversees. In his spare time, he enjoys the outdoors and spending time with his son.
He is one of the makers who we are proud to highlight and we are grateful for his skill that allows us to bring the best products to you.
Mark Albert Boots is an independent brand founded in Somerset, Pennsylvania. At Mark Albert, we produce high-quality, American-made leather boots.
Our journey began when founder, Mark Albert Barbera, began searching for his own pair of Chelsea boots in November of 2015. Mark, a fashion-forward, but penny-conscious college student was discouraged by the lack of quality affordable options on the market. As a designer and entrepreneur, he decided to design his own boot. After pitching his design to a small boot manufacturer in his hometown of Somerset, PA, Mark decided to take his idea to Kickstarter. His campaign was 152% overfunded in September 2016, and from here, Mark Albert Boots was born.
My Nonno, Joe Barbera, was born in the small town of Fiumedinisi, Sicily in 1895. After serving in WWI and surviving a prisoner of war camp, he and his family immigrated to the United States in 1922 and settled in another small town, Rockwood, PA. Here, my Nonno opened up a shoe repair shop.
In 1939, my Nonno moved his shoe repair shop to nearby Somerset, PA. Here, my grandfather and great-aunt worked with my Nonno in his shop where it was typical to repair at least 30 to 40 pairs of shoes per day.
My Nonno worked as a cobbler in his shop in Somerset until he was 86 years old. He also passed on many of his techniques to the boot manufacturer that is creating all of the Mark Albert Boots. All of our boots are proudly manufactured here by 54 American workers.
Leather runs in my blood, and I am incredibly proud that the same craftsmanship that my own Nonno used in his shop is being passed down into every pair of Mark Albert Boots.
You can find our boots and shoes at the following locations:
What is the return policy?
While we do NOT accept returns, we DO ACCEPT exchanges for other sizes as we want to keep you happy in a pair of Mark Albert's.
What is the shipping rate?
Our standard shipping flat rate is $15 nationwide. If you are an international customer, please inquire about your shipping rate by emailing your address to email@example.com.
What are your recommendations for sizing? *important*
For our Classic Chelsea styles: (92 Last)
we recommend that you order one half size down from your standard athletic shoe (i.e. if you wear a size 10 Nike, you should order a size 9.5 Mark Albert) unless you have wide feet. The Classic style is made using a western last, so expect the boots to be snug across the width of your foot, as this is common before being broken in with wear. If you know that you wear E or EE PLEASE add this in the notes at checkout so that we can custom make this sizing.
For our Derby Shoes, Uptown Boots, Traveller Boots, Engineer Boots, and Trek Chelsea Boots: (60 Last)
These styles are built on our 60 last, a traditional workboot last. We recommend a full size down from your typical athletic shoe size on these, and they will fit wider than our Classic Chelsea Boots. If you typically wear wider than a D then please inquire about custom E and EE sizing.
For our Slip-On Loafer:
Since these are a slip-on without laces, we recommend a full size down from your typical athletic shoes. They are built on our 60 last, and come in a standard D width.
For our Appalachian Boot:
We recommend going a full size down compared to your typical athletic shoe sizing as this model comes in a standard E width.
Sizing comparisons (examples):
Nike sz. 10 --> Mark Albert sz. 9 (60 Last)
Nike sz. 10 --> Mark Albert sz. 9.5 (92 Last)
Red Wing Iron Ranger / Moc Toe sz. 10 --> Mark Albert sz. 10 (depending on width)
Our ladies styles run true to size. They are slightly narrow, but again, this is made using a western last, meaning that they should be slightly snug in width and will break in with wear.
Please feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org with any sizing questions!
What is Goodyear Welt Construction and why is it so valuable?
Goodyear welt construction is a method of bootmaking and shoemaking that is highly regarded in the industry as the benchmark for a quality made boot or shoe. It creates a relatively waterproof seal on the boot and most importantly, it allows your boots or shoes to be resoled by a cobbler so that you can wear your favorite Mark Alberts for years to come.
Most Goodyear Welt boots and shoes cost over $400.
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