Converse Rubber Shoe Company was created by Marquis Mills Converse in 1908 in Malden, Massachusetts. In 1917, the company designed the forerunner of the modern All Star, marketed under the name "Non-Skids." The shoe was composed of a rubber sole and canvas upper and was designed to be a high performance athletic shoe for basketball players.

In 1923, American basketball player Charles "Chuck" Taylor joined a basketball team sponsored by the Converse Company called The Converse All Stars. Taylor held basketball clinics in high schools all over the country and while teaching the fundamentals of the game, he sold the All Star shoes.  As a salesman and athlete for the company, Taylor also made improvements to the shoe he loved. His ideas for the shoe were designed to provide enhanced flexibility and support and also incorporated a patch to protect the ankle.

A variety of professional basketball players soon wore All Stars and they became the envy of all aspiring basketball players. Soon after, All Stars were being worn by athletes in the Olympics, and during World War II American soldiers began to wear All Stars while in training

Although Chuck Taylor All-Stars vanished from the professional basketball scene completely by 1979, they continued to flourish in popular culture and fashion. As fashion icons, Chuck Taylors have played a role in several subcultures, and the company has in turn promoted this as part of the shoes' cachet. Converse has used Chuck Taylor All-Stars to enhance the brand's cultural and subcultural relevance. Chuck Taylor All-Stars proved their continuity throughout the 20th and 21st centuries through their portrayal in film, art, and music culture, as well as through use in sports sub-culture including weightlifting.