The Hettrick Mfg. Co. was founded in 1893 (or 1891, depending on the source) in Toledo, Ohio as a manufacturer of canvas goods, largely awnings and wagon covers. In 1921, they launched the “American Field” line of hunting garments. A bit of a late comer to the hunting game, they advertised their coats as designed by an “old timer”. Their factory was located at 1401 Summit Street, Toledo, Ohio. Unlike most of the other manufacturers of hunting clothes, Hettrick maintained their other interests after entering the hunting market, producing everything from canvas lawn chairs to tricycles. Hettrick was purchased by the F&M Real Estate Company of Lowell, MA and in 1962, Hettrick closed its Ohio factories and moved to Statesville, NC to take advantage of the lower cost of manufacturing in the south. They moved production into the factory of the Empire Manufacturing Corp, who continued producing their own line from the same plant, with a secondary factory in Pink Hill, NC. It is unclear whether they were purchased by Empire, sources are conflicting. Empire ran a strongly anti-union shop, threatening employees in 1968 who were attempting to unionize. They were sued by employees, the threats were found to be unlawful and the case was used as an example in a Congressional subcommittee on labor. Shortly thereafter, in 1969, American Field was acquired by the Olin Corporation, manufacturer of Winchester rifles. In 1970, the Hettrick divistion acquired the J. W. Johnson Co of Bellwood, Ill and Dickey Oakwood Corp of Oakwood, Ohio. In 1971, Hettrick merged with Comfy Seattle Co and became Trailblazer by Winchester, “managing transactions for Comfy, the Turner Co., Olin Skiis, J.W. Johnson, Dickey Oakwood”, as well as factories in Pink Hill, Statesville and one in Corcoran, California built in 1970. While Hettrick as a company was absorbed, the Hettrick brand continued to be produced, with production shifted to the Pink Hill plant, reflected on labels. By the 1980s, the operation had been sold again, to WeatherShield Sports Equipment, Inc. (founded 1951) at Petoskey Rd. At Mercer Blvd., Charlevoix, MI. They lasted at least into the 1990s.
This vintage coat was made in the late 1940s-1950s by the Hettrick Mfg. Co of Toledo, Ohio under their “American Field” label. The coat has some striking similarities to the blanket mackinaws made in this era by Congress Sportswear / Maine Guide, including the raw bottom edge and the rounded collar with peak lapels. The coat is belted, with buttoned adjusters on the sleeves. More in keeping with the mackinaws of the 1930s, this one is made with unlined construction, save for the rayon lined sleeves.
Chest (pit to pit): 24″ (doubled = 48″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 21″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 23-1/4″
Length (base of collar to hem): 34″