In 1935 Paul A. Sperry designed the first original American brand of boat shoes. Sperrts, or Top-Siders, were the first boat shoes introduced into the boating and footwear markets.

Whilst out sailing Paul A. Sperry slipped on the deck of his boay and fell overboard. Fortunately he was able to pull himself back on board following this experience he decided to develop a non-slip shoe. The idea of how to create a non-slip shoe was based on noticing how his own dog had the ability to run down an icy hill without slipping. The grooves on his dogs paws gave him the inspiration to cut grooved patterns into a natural rubber sole.