These boots belonged to Private James Flatow who wore them during the First World War (1914-1918). Good boots kept in good condition have always been a basic essential for every infantryman. In the First World War the waterlogged conditions in the trenches meant a lot of soldiers developed Trench Foot, which left untreated too long could lead to gangrene. To prevent Trench Foot, feet needed to be warm and dry, very difficult in the trenches. The response on the home front was a huge voluntary campaign to knit socks for soldiers.