Woolrich, Inc., founded in 1830 by John Rich and Daniel McCormick, is the oldest manufacturer of outdoor wear in the United States. The company was founded for the purpose of manufacturing fabric for the wives of hunters, loggers and trappers.
John Rich immigrated from England, started his first woolen mill, then travelled to local lumber camps and farms, selling woolen fabrics, socks, coverlets, and yarn from his mule cart.
To take advantage of a steadier supply of water. John Rich built a new mill next to Chatham Run. That building still stands today and is a part of the community of Woolrich, PA.
Legend has it that the designer of this iconic fabrics owned a herd of buffalo. so he named the black and red checkered fabric after his beloved herd. Today, buffalo check fabric enjoys worldwide popularity.
Woolrich made wool blankets for Union soldiers fighting in the Civil War. These blanket are still made today at their woolen mill.
Because people now had time to enjoy the outdoors, Woolrich began producing a line of wool shirts, pants, jackets and caps. As the 20th Century began, Woolrich played a big role in the emerging leisure industry. In the early 1900s, even working class people were able to enjoy leisure time and vacation, spending more time in the outdoors.
According to woolrich