Spring shoe shopping in Victorian-era Brooklyn

These days, there’s no shortage of boutiques and shops in Brownstone Brooklyn—and the same could be said for the downtown Brooklyn of more than 100 years ago.

But instead of tweeting about a sale or building a Facebook following, Victorian-era stores advertised their services and goods by handing out colorful trade cards, like the two here.

So when winter was over and well-off ladies wanted to purchase spring shoes, they knew to head over to Joseph J. Byers.

His shop must have been popular; the store ran lots of ads in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle in the 1880s.

Their 110 Court Street store is now the site of a multiplex.

Fred Finch’s Fine Shoes dates back to at least the 1870s. I think it’s the site of a Dr. Jay’s now, part of the illustrious Fulton Street Mall.

This second card comes from the Brooklyn Public Library’s wonderful database of old Brooklyn trade cards. They have cards from all kinds of merchants and businesses that existed on Fulton Street in the 19th century.

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