Compass nestled between the silhouette of a cowboy on a horse and blue text over yellowed background.
NOTICE DO NOT CARRY THIS RODEO COMPASS IN BOOT POCKET. THIS IS A DELICATE INSTRUMENT. CARRY IN COAT POCKET OIL OR GREASE BOOTS TO INCREASE WATER RESISTANCE AND WEAR.
PARISIAN NOVELTY CO. CHICAGO
This button/compass comes from a 1920s pair of boys “rodeo boots.” They were advertised in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch in December 1927 as boots “with a compass in the pocket.” They were described as follows: “The compass is only one of the attractions of Rodeo Boots-those ‘Western’ kinds of high-top Boots that boys can wear in all kinds of weather. Mocassin vamps, brass eyelets, big laces, and sturdy but flexible leather soles.” They sold for $5.50 in sizes 12-13.5 and $6.50 in sizes 1-6.
The newspaper ad shows a boot that looks like a 14 hole Doc Marten boot with a square toe, the tops cut in an S-curve toward the back, and patch pocket on the side for the compass. Ironically, the button/compass says to not keep the compass in the boot pocket.
(1927, December 2). It’s Christmas time at Stix Baer and Fuller. St. Louis Post-Dispatch. P.5. Retrieved from https://www.newspapers.com/image/140418145/