How it all began
It all started in 1945 after Klaus Maertens had a fall skiing and got injured. The need for a boot that had a comfortable sole to help him recover from his injury led to the design of a revolutionary air box sole. The drawing gave way to a prototype that was shown to Dr. Herbert Funk who joined Maertens and started production in 1947.
the british connection
A decade passed and in 1959 Bill Griggs' R. Griggs Group took an interest in the Maertens sole and bought its production rights for the UK. However, the product that Griggs would produce and sell was different from what Maertens and Funk produced in Germany. It had an altered sole, a bulkier and simpler upper, yellow stitching joining the sole to the upper part of the boot, and a different tread. The boots began marketing with the name "Airwair" and featured a label on the back with the slogan "With Bouncing Soles".
The birth of a cultural reference
In April 1960, the famous eight-hole 1460 was launched, and in 1961 the 1461 shoes were launched. Initially sold as work shoes, the Dr. Martens quickly found fans and clients in the emerging working-class subcultures. From Ska to Hardcore, passing through Punk, Goth and Glam, all these subcultures found in Dr. Martens and in his models a pillar of his style.
In 2020 the brand celebrated its sixtieth anniversary and is today a listed company with great attention to the past but with an eye on the future.