WWW 125th party to give $25,000 to winners

Rockford’s anniversary event will be held at the Rockford Footwear Depot, 235 N. Main, Rockford from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and will include free hotdogs and popcorn, a live radio remote from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and registration for prizes.

Sweepstakes prizes include 50-inch plasma HDTVs, Garmin GPS systems, Shimano baitcasting rod and reel combos, Carson Falcon binoculars, Yakima racks, iPOD shuffles with iTUNES gift cards and Wolverine footwear and apparel prizes.

For more than a century, Wolverine has been relentless in its pursuit of providing comfortable and innovative footwear, apparel and gear for consumers.

Founder G.A. Krause and his sons built a shoe factory shortly after organizing the Rogue Electric Light and Power Company in Rockford, Michigan.

In 1903, quality craftsmen made 300 pairs of tough, dependable work shoes each day in the shoe factory, setting the stage for what would become a standard of excellence in footwear.

In 1908, Wolverine opened a tannery next to their shoe factory, supplying the factory with durable leathers.

In 1914, the Wolverine brand name was created from the type of tough, durable Wolverine horsehide leather used for its popular “1,000 mile boot.”

In 2008, Wolverine will celebrate its 125th anniversary in many ways.

Inspired by the company heritage and the first Wolverine boot ever made, the No. 1883 Collection will debut and will consist a series of boots and shoes featuring distressed leathers and vintage design details

In conjunction with its 125th anniversary, Wolverine will be holding a sweepstakes giving away cash and product during the Fall of 2008. Entry forms and information will be featured at points of sale in retailers nationwide.

Wolverine’s Products and Technologies, Wolverine’s commitment to creating comfortable and quality footwear remains just as strong today as when the company began 125 years ago.

In addition to Wolverine’s heritage of creating durable work footwear, Wolverine is also known for its hunting and rugged outdoor footwear.

Over the years, Wolverine has been known as an industry leader in creating revolutionary comfort technologies.

In 2008, Wolverine was awarded the Plus Award, a footwear trade industry award for excellence in design in the work footwear category, continuing its nine-year tenure as the leading producer of work boots in the industry.

Wolverine has teamed up with The Wolverine Foundation (TWF) to support the Beartooth-Absaroka Wolverine Study in Yellowstone National Park in 2008. Support from Wolverine will enable TWF to continue its support of research on the wolverine.

TWF will continue supporting research by aiding in the development and implementation of aerial surveys of the wolverine in the Yellowstone ecosystem this winter.

Wolverine was inspired to support to TWF by its own unwavering commitment to outdoor adventure and awareness.

Wolverine will also sponsor the Associated Builders and Contractors Association, a national trade association representing merit shop contractors, subcontractors, material suppliers and related firms in 78 chapters across the United States, with many of its upcoming craft training efforts.

Wolverine participates in ABC’s Construction Education Conference, by donating product raising awareness on footwear safety and technology.

Two $1,000 Wolverine scholarships will be granted through ABC’s Trimmer Education Foundation to eligible applicants currently enrolled in full-time craft training programs.

This month, Wolverine is providing all ABC So-Cal Chapter graduates a free-pair of Wolverine work boots in celebration of their hard work and accomplishment.

Wolverine will attend the 2009 So-Cal Craft Championships and donate prizes to each competitor as well as offer a significant discount on footwear to all attendees.

Company timeline:1883 – G.A. Krause founded the company that would become Wolverine World Wide. He is believed to have said, “There is some opportunity here.”

1903 – Krause and his sons built a shoe factory in Rockford, Michigan. It made 300 pairs of shoes each day.

1908 – Next, the Wolverine tannery was built and began supplying their shoe factory with tough, durable horsehide.

1914 – The Wolverine brand name was selected for shoes made of Wolverine horsehide leather. They were called “1000 Mile Shoes.”

1919 – Wolverine began national advertising: Wolverine work shoes were sold by one of the earliest national sales forces, and became very popular.

1921 – Flush with success, the Hirth-Krause Company changed its name to Wolverine Shoe and Tanning Corporation and began to grow ever more quickly.

1928? – Wolverine began selling shares of the company to its own employees – one of the nation’s first profit-sharing plans.

1931 – The Great Depression came, and although sales were down, factory lines were kept running and shoes were warehoused for better times.

1941 – During World War II the Wolverine Shoe & Tanning Company went to work for the U.S. Navy, developing pigskin gloves.

1946 – By the end of the war, Wolverine engineers had created a type of new leather: pigskin suede, and built a factory to produce it.

1952 – With horses disappearing from the American landscape Wolverine searched for new ways to use pigskin suede. G.A. Krause’s son, Victor led the race.

1965 – Wolverine stock went up on the “Big Board” and was traded on the New York Stock Exchange for the first time.

1964 – The company chose a more fitting name, and Wolverine Shoe & Tanning Company became Wolverine World Wide, Inc.

1986 – Wolverine funded the Biomechanical Engineering Laboratory at Michigan State University, and formed the International Design Center in Montecatini, Italy.

1991 – Wolverine introduced DuraShocks, the first true comfort system for workboots. Wolverine DuraShocks created a revolution with lighter, longer-lasting products.

2001?? – Wolverine Compressor Technology was introduced. Wolverine Compressor adds comfort, flexibility and a cool and dry foot.

2006 – Wolverine introduced CarbonMAX advanced safety toe boots. The carbon fiber safety toe caps are lightweight, non-conductive and resist extreme cold and heat.

2007 – Wolverine introduces authentic workwear and rugged outdoor apparel.

2008? – Wolverine revolutionizes the work boot industry once again with Contour Welt. Patented contour welt design provides superior flexibility by allowing the boot to bend and flex and essential points for maximum performance.

September 20, 2008 – Wolverine celebrates 125 years by holding a celebration event nationwide and in Rockford with free food, prizes and other give-aways.

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The Squire has been Rockford’s free weekly newspaper since 1871. Our loyal readership includes over fifteen thousand homes in the Rockford area, including the affluent Lakes area of Lake Bella Vista, Bostwick Lake and Silver Lake; Belmont, Blythefield, as well as Algoma, Courtland, Cannon and Plainfield Townships. The Squire is distributed through the U.S. Post Office every Thursday. We also deliver to in-town businesses and homes with paper carriers and news stands in our grocery stores and over thirty local shops.