pac n Also pac boot, pack [Perh < Delaware pacu, paku shoe, but perh abbr for shoepack] Cf bootpack, larrigan
Orig a waterproof moccasin; later a moccasin-type waterproof or rubber-soled shoe or boot, esp one with a leather upper; a felt shoe worn inside an overshoe.
1872 (1876) Knight Amer. Mech. Dict. 2.1590, Pac; Pack. A moccasin having a sole turned up and sewed to the upper. Though now made of leather of various kinds, the pac, as used by the Indians of the Six Nations, for instance, was made of hide boiled in tallow and wax; or of tawed hide subsequently stuffed with tallow or wax. 1902 (1969) Sears Catalogue 1048, Lumbermen’s Pacs, $1.98. . . our best hand sewed Pac with 10-inch leg of oil grain leather and oil tan pac leather uppers. Ibid, Men’s Pacs, $0.98. 1911 Century Dict. Suppl., Pack. . . Also pac. . . 1. A moccasin made of hide prepared with tallow and wax, used by various North American Indian tribes.—2. A heavy felt or waterproof half-boot worn by loggers in the lumber-camps in winter. 1916 Kephart Camping & Woodcraft 1.157, Pacs.—A “shoe-pac” or “larrigan” is a beefhide moccasin with eight to ten-inch top, and with or without a light, flexible sole. It is practically waterproof so long as the seams (which are on top where they get less strain than those of a shoe) remain sound, and they are kept well greased. They are lighter and more pliable than shoes, and are first-rate “extras” to take along for wet days. 1922 Outing 80.68, Footwear, pac boots 16 inches; rubber boots. 1927 (1970) Sears Catalogue 341, An excellent combination consisting of a heavy rolled edge rubber over, with leather and light blanket lined stormproof arctic cloth top, together with a warm natural sheepskin wool Pac. 1944 Sears Cat. (ed. 189) 345 (DA), Leather top work Pac. . . Not rationed. 1950 WELS (Canvas-top shoes with rubber soles) 1 Inf, seWI, Pacs. 1950 WELS Suppl. nwWI, Packs—1. Boots with rubber shoes and leather tops. 2. Felt-boots made especially for wear inside galoshes or rubbers. 1956 Sorden–Ebert Logger’s Words 25 Gt Lakes, Packs, Winter footwear worn by lumber-jacks. Made of rubber bottoms with leather tops. They were worn with several pairs of wool socks. 1968 DARE (Qu. W21, Soft shoes that people wear only inside the house) Inf VA28, Pacs [FW: Inf’s spelling]—like a moccasin. 1991 Tabbert Dict. Alaskan Engl. 281, Shoepac / shoepack—pac / pack—These terms, which now usually refer to laceup boots with rubber bottoms and leather uppers, are from a word borrowed from the seventeenth-century Delaware Indian trade language (ultimately from Delaware) listed variously as shipak, sippack, seppock, etc. meaning ‘shoes’. English speakers early misidentified the first part with English shoe. However, the second portion has been maintained in the un-English-looking form pac, though a more familiar pack rendering also has become established.