Friday, November 30, 2012

1923 Hamilton Carhartt Cotton Mills Canceled Check

Hamilton Carhartt Cotton Mills, Limited canceled check dated May 31st, 1923 for $16.90 from The Bank Of Nova Scotia. The check is made out to McLean Bros., in Goderich, Ontario. This check is from Carhartt's Toronto Unit which started operations around 1910. 

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Circa 1900 The "Sweet-Orr" Girl No. 4 Postcard

Circa 1900 Sweet, Orr & Company advertising postcard featuring The "Sweet-Orr" Girl. This card is No. 4 out of, what I assume from researching, a series of 5. The back features a fac-smilie of the celebrated "Sweet-Orr Stripe." From what I can tell, the bottom back portion of the card was originally printed with a blank space and upon ordering the cards the dealer's name/business would be added.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

1908 Sweet, Orr & Co. Invoice

Nice Sweet, Orr & Company invoice with multiple dates from 1908, the first being May27th. The things I really like about this piece are the list of offices & showrooms, the itemized list of goods which includes a Tug O' War show card and the received stamp on the reverse.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Lebanon Overalls Perfection At Last Advertising Flyer

This piece is probably from the late 1880s. It is printed on very thin vellum-like paper. It advertises Carter & Churchill, manufacturers of Lebanon Overalls, production of a suspender with both a button-hole attachment with adjustable slides on the straps.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

Nothing says Thanksgiving more than a little kid in overalls wielding an axe. This seemed to be a popular theme for vintage Thanksgiving postcards.

Union-Made wishes everyone and their family a Happy Thanksgiving.

1897 Neustadter Brothers Standard Shirts Advertising Envelope

Great advertising envelope from Neustadter Brothers in Portland, Oregon. The cover highlights the company's Standard Shirts and Gent's Furnished Goods. The cover is postmarked on the front and back. The front has a date of June 15, 1897 out of Portland, Oregon and the back is dated with what appears to also be June 15, 1897 from Walla Walla, Washington. The Portland branch of Neustadter Brothers was founded in 1878. The envelope is addressed to another prominent firm, The Schwabacher Company of Walla Walla. The Schwabacher's were Bavarian Jewish merchants that were a key part in developing the Northwest Territory, which later became Washington State. Along with Walla Walla, they owned stores in San Francisco and Seattle. Their store in Walla Walla was considered the finest north of Sam Francisco. For more detailed information on the Schwabacher family and business history click here

Neustadter Standard Shirt from
The Schwabacher Brothers store in Walla Walla circa 1886 from HistoryLink.Org

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

1926 Work Crew Photo Decatur, Illinois

Unidentified work crew from Decatur, Illinois dated 1926 from what looks like Steig Studio. It's hard to tell what kind of work crew this is, but looking at the footwear it doesn't appear to be a hardcore labor job. Looks like some type of a carriage in the background

Monday, November 19, 2012

1925 Hamilton Carhartt Cotton Mills double-sided Invoice

Hamilton Carhartt & Company was established in 1884 as a furniture maker. In 1889 Carhartt changed over to making apparel for working men. In 1905 the company was incorporated as Hamilton Carhartt Manufacturer, Inc. In 1910 this changed to Hamilton Carhartt Cotton Mills. The invoice show featured here is dated September 18, 1925. This is pretty significant for Carhartt because it is the year they opened a plant in Paris, France, as see on the mill, factory and warehouse map on the reverse. It's interesting to see how far Hamilton Carhartt's reach extended. Along with Paris, the company also had a plant in Liverpool, England.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Circa 1932-1938 Sweet-Orr Advertising Envelope Joliet, Illinois

Circa 1932-1938 Sweet-Orr advertising envelope from their Joliet, Illinois factory. While the cover is addressed and appears postally used, it has no postmark to give the actual date. The 1932-1938 range comes from the time that this type of metered mail first started (1932) and when Sweet-Orr's Joliet factory closed (October 1938). Thanks to Jim Christensen of Your Old Pal, Jim for helping me with the dating of this piece.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Blue Bell Men's Work Pants Qualitag

This informative Blue Bell hag tag was called the Qualitag. The purpose of the tag was to provide quality and product information. It was first used be Blue Bell in 1944 and copyrighted in 1945. 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

1932 Horn & Company, Reputation Overalls & Shirts, Invoice

Invoice dated January 18, 1932 from Horn & Company, Inc. in Allentown, Pennsylvania. The dry goods and notions wholesaler was also the manufacturer of Reputation Brand Overalls and Work Shirts. Other than what's shown on the invoice, I can't locate anything on the history of this company. If anyone has some information, please pass it along.

From a previous ebay auction

Monday, November 12, 2012

1924 H.W. Carter & Sons Letter

Letter from H.B. Jackson of H.W. Carter & Sons to Amos Abbott Company in Dexter, Maine dated April 28, 1924. In the letter Jackson requests Mackinaw fabric samples. Amos Abbott Co. was one of the oldest and largest mills in Maine. They were established by Amos and Jeremiah Abbott in 1836 and closed in 1975. As expected from Carter & Sons, another great train image appears on this letter. The top line of the letter is pretty interesting. "The First Manufacturers of Overalls in the United States." Other than being the manufacturers of overalls, this letterhead also highlights khaki trousers and Mackinaw coats.

From the 1916 Chamber of Commerce Journal of Maine

Thursday, November 8, 2012

1908 Bennett Morgan Company Advertising Envelope

1908 Bennett Morgan Company, Binghamton, New York, advertising cover. The piece has two trademarks. Both marks appear to be June 18th. The from is out of Binghamton, NY and the back is Whitney Point, NY. The back of the envelope refer to both "Rival" Shirts and "Iron Clad" Overalls. The use of the word "Iron Clad" shows up with several brands from this time period.

1922 F.S. Bixler Company Invoice

The F.D. Bixler Company was established by Floyd S. Bixler in 1879. As well as being a dry goods company, he also produced overalls, pants and work shirts. The name Bixler has a long history in the town of Easton, Pennsylvania. Bixler's Jewelry was established in 1785 and is America's oldest jewelry store. In the 1905 edition of Historic Homes and Institutions and Genealogical and Personal Memoirs of the Lehigh Valley Pennsylvania  describes Floyd Bixler's name as synonymous with intergrity and honor.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

1890s Cabinet Card with Two Blacksmiths

Amazing cabinet card from the 1890s featuring two blacksmiths in overalls. The blacksmith on the left is wear overalls with great pocket details. Both men have pocket watches.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Can You Help a Brother Out?

The window of an unemployed steel worker from Ambridge, PA. 1941 from Library of Congress

Other than sharing my collection of denim and workwear material, and maybe some words about my son, I never intended this site to be really personal. I feel right now I need to make it slightly personal. For the past six years I have by employed by Ralph Lauren as the director, and more recently the senior director, of men's and women's graphics and CAD for the Rugby brand. Yesterday it was announced that the brand will cease all operations. For the corporate employees the last day will be next Friday, November 9th. The stores, as well as e-commerce, will shutdown February 2nd. As a result, I will be unemployed next Friday. I will still continue to post just maybe not everyday. I still have way too much stuff around here and it needs to be shared with you. In the mean time I will be hunting for a full-time job and doing freelance. If any readers who work in the fashion industry know of any opportunities, please drop me a line. Thanks.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

1911 H.W. Carter & Sons, Carter's Overalls, Invoice

H.W. Carter & Sons, manufacturers of Carter's Overalls in Lebanon, New Hampshire, invoice dated September 2, 1911. This invoice has a great train image on it. I like the tagline at the top that reads, "The OLDEST Manufacturers of OVERALLS in the UNITED STATES."