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 Canada in the 1950s from English made Early’s Witney Point Blanket material and was sold by Sears under their Hercules Fieldmaster label. It has a Milium lining, which, when combined with the incredibly thick blankets used in this make for one of the warmest vintage coats out there.
These Lakeland Wagonwheel Jackinac jackets were advertised heavily in 1947 and 1948, and appeared in Life Magazine. It is a twist on the classic red and black Hudson’s Bay point blanket style. It has a five button front. There is a zipped breast pocket, and shirt style cuffs. The zipper is an early style Talon chain zipper. The jacket is unlined and has taped seams. There is a nice recurrence of the stripe pattern on the underside of the collar.
Tagged size: XL
Chest (pit to pit): 27″ (doubled = 54″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 21″″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 27″
Length (base of collar to hem): 29″″
This vintage coat was made in the 1930s from moose patterned wool camp blanket material. The coat is made in a rare pattern, with a half-zip bottom and a 3×6 double breasted top that was made in small numbers between about 1934-1939, notably by Congress Sportswear as part of their Maine Guide line. Most were made from red and black Hudson’s Bay point blanket material, but this one is made of a more distinctive camp blanket. The blanket material has a red background with orange and camel colored stripes, approximating sunrise, and black moose. I have found several examples of this moose-meets-deco patterned Indian Blanket from other sources that have been attributed to the Pendleton Woolen mills, but none with a surviving label, so I can’t be sure. LL Bean was selling a similar coat in the mid 1930s from their figural mallard patterned blankets. The jacket has two handwarmer pockets and a yoke which forms the “chest protector” double breasted section. The coat has a zipper hood which buttons down into a collar. The hood spreads into a collar or zips into a hood with a Talon zipper, with a deco-lined slider and rounded slider-to-puller assembly only produced in the mid 1930s, and a bell-shaped pull. The original owner must have loved this coat, the main zipper, probably a grommet Talon was replaced with a 1950s Talon. Wear to the hem was repaired with patches and stitching. The chest was darned. The underarm and front corner were patched with buffalo plaid wool. But with such a distinctive coat, both in terms of material and in terms of cut, who can blame them?
Chest (pit to pit): 23″ (doubled = 46″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 19″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 24-1/2″
Length (base of collar to hem): 32″