At one-time we actually made things in America. I know that sounds strange, but I assure you it is true. Not only that I offer proof via the 57th edition of the Davison’s Knit Goods Trade book from October 1947. The book was a resource for all things knitwear related, wholesalers, dyers, manufacturers, agents and all sorts of other related pursuits and a symbol of our post-industrial existence. The owner of the book is Mr. Steven Tater of Ohio Knitting Mills (link here) from Cleveland. Back in the day, Ohio Knitting Mills and my hometown of Cleveland was one of the centers for knit wear production in the United States. Start American manufacturing rant. Not so much anymore. These days you would be hard pressed to find anyone in the U.S. that manufactures knits. The only makers left would most likely still be in business as a result of the Berry Amendment (the law that gives preference to domestically made goods). People say that this is just protectionism, but the fact of the matter is Berry is one of the main reasons that any U.S. textile and apparel manufacturing survives today. End American manufacturing rant.
The image directly above is Stone Knitting Mills Co., the predecessor to Ohio Knitting Mills. It is amazing to see this book and take a trip back in time with all of the small independent factories and agents, especially in a time of consolidation and homogenization. When you drill down to the core of ACL it is about fighting for the little guy, for the independent shop. Like anything else, there is a place in this world for the big box retailers and chain stores. Hell ,I shop there and don’t have a problem with that, but it is important that people don’t hold on to what little we have left or this is going to be one depressing place.