"The Shining", a Profile of New York City Shoe Shiners

Walt "Shine" White, shines the shoes of Bob Cohen, a trader.
Walt "Shine" White, shines the shoes of Bob Cohen, a trader.

Narratively, a site devoted to untold human stories, recently published an article about the dying shoe-shining business. The piece discusses the changes the industry has faced over the years, and profiles of several of the older men still working in it.

Mays likes to say, repeatedly, that shoe shining is “not like it used to be.” “The other guys all died on me,” he says. “I’m the only survivor of the whole entire group. We were six guys all together. We started working on 42nd Street together—before the stands.”

via Narratively

Matt Coneybeare

Matt Coneybeare

Editor in Chief

Matt enjoys exploring the City's with his partner and son. He is an avid marathon runner, and spends most of his time eating, running, and working on cool stuff.

Something wrong with this post? Let us know!

Shop Related Products…

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Brought To You By…