MERRILL - "Tough," "durable," and "American" are all words used to describe the boots Weinbrenner Shoe Company in Merrill has made for the last 125 years.
But those adjectives can also describe the people who wear them and the people who make them.
"Every shoe we make has a purpose," said Weinbrenner Shoe Co. President Patrick Miner. "These people understand what it takes. They're not afraid to get their hands dirty."
Weinbrenner makes the shoes for servicemen and women in the U.S. military, postal workers, firefighters, and anyone else who needs shoes that can stand up in harsh conditions.
The footwear company has made it through two world wars, the Great Depression, and the Great Recession to accomplish something few other companies in the United States have accomplished.
"One-tenth of one percent of the companies in the United States can actually say they're 125 or more years old," Miner said.
And that achievement isn't lost on any of the employees.
"I'm proud to be part of Weinbrenner's 125th legacy," said product developer Linda Herber.
But perhaps what makes the small-town company the proudest is being able to put that "Made in America" stamp on every boot.
"USA made… that's what makes our country," said Herber. "We need USA made."
"It's important for us as Americans to support American," said Miner.
It's that American spirit that's built into every shoe and every worker who builds them that makes a 125-year-old legacy something to be proud of.
"When you're 125 years old it's, hard not to be proud of that," said Miner.