Affordability is obviously a term that is relative. But for this post’s sake, we’ll say affordable = under $200. Most of the time, quality that is usually associated with “Made in the US” is sacrificed for affordability. Fortunately, there are a few American brands offering very affordable, well made boots that will last. And they’re really not hard to find. One of the best deals on a moc toe boot out there comes from Thorogood. Made in Wisconsin, this oil tanned leather boot is Goodyear welted and features a Vibram Christy wedge sole. The Thorogood Moc Toe clocks in around $150.
A nice plain toe option comes from Chippewa. Currently, J. Crew is selling a handsome pair as one of their collaborations. Also made in Wisconsin, these boys are Goodyear welted and have a Vibram oil-resistant sole (no slipping). They are a cheaper, but still nice alternative to the Wolverine 1000 Mile Boot (and others like it). These will cost you around $200.
Lastly, a great pair of wet weather boots from here in the States is a no-brainer: the Bean Boot. These have easily been the boot of choice for the blogosphere over the past few years and the boot of choice for outdoorsmen for the last century. Sewn together in Maine, these boots are made with full grain leather, have a steel shank for support, and chain-treads on the sole for traction. Been Boots start at $85, so get a pair in each color.