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Sumner Hosiery Mill Records

Donor:
Sumner, Harold Townsend  Search this
Creator:
Sumner Hosiery Mill  Search this
Extent:
0.3 Cubic feet (1 box)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Advertisements
Photographs
Articles
Scrapbooks
Date:
1946-1957
Summary:
The collection documents Sumner Hosiery Mill through articles, newspaper clippings, publications, advertisements, and photographs.
Scope and Contents:
The collection consists of one scrapbook (16" x 18" pages), from 1946 to 1957, documenting Sumner Hosiery Mill through articles, newspaper clippings, publications, advertisements, and photographs. There is one product booklet, Sumner See-Shells, Fall and Winter Shades, 1952 with samples of hosiery.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into one series.
Biographical / Historical:
Harold Sumner, along with his brother Hubert, founded Sumner Hosiery Mill in Gastonia, North Carolina in 1946. The Sumner's joined a booming hosiery business and with their Government Issue (G.I) priority status (Servicemen's Readjustment Act of 1944), they ordered two hosiery machines. The machines were set-up in the Wisteria Hosiery Mill, but were moved in 1947 to create the Sumner Hosiery Mill. The Sumner's distinguished themselves from other hosiery mills by introducing colorful innovations and styles that were created to match shoes and outfits. In 1957, Sumner Hosiery sold their machines and shipped them to Chile.
Separated Materials:
Samples of Sumner Hosiery were donated to the Division of Social History(now the Division of Home and Community Life), National Museum of American History.
Provenance:
Collection was donated to the Archives Center, national Museum of American History by Harold Townsend Sumner on February 9, 2000.
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Topic:
advertising  Search this
Hosiery, Nylon  Search this
Hosiery  Search this
Textile industry  Search this
Fashion  Search this
Knitting companies (Mills)  Search this
Genre/Form:
Advertisements -- 20th century
Photographs -- 20th century
Articles
Scrapbooks -- 20th century
Citation:
Sumner Hosiery Mill Records, 1946-1957, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0719
See more items in:
Sumner Hosiery Mill Records
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0719

Lift bridge over boat house slip, switch to Utica Knitting Company Mill

Collection Collector:
Mechanical and Civil Engineering, Division of [former name], NMAH, SI.  Search this
Work and Industry, Division of, NMAH, SI  Search this
Collection Donor:
ConRail  Search this
Collection Creator:
Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad  Search this
Container:
Map-folder 17
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1901-1902
Collection Restrictions:
Collection is open for research. Unprotected photographs must be handled with gloves.
Collection Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Collection Citation:
Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad Records, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.
See more items in:
Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad Records
Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad Records / Series 2: Drawings / 2.4: Bridges: Moveable
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-1074-ref847

Jantzen Knitting Mills Collection

Creator:
Jantzen, Carl C.  Search this
Names:
Costumes, Division of.  Search this
Jantzen Knitting Mills.  Search this
Portland Knitting Company.  Search this
Zehntbauer, John C.  Search this
Extent:
7 Cubic feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Business records
Catalogs
Photograph albums
Date:
1925-1977
Summary:
Carl C. Jantzen and John C. Zehntbauer founded the Portland Knitting Company in 1910 as a retail store selling knitted products (i.e. sweaters, hosiery, jackets). Carl Jantzen later invented an automated circular knitting machine that allowed the company to make light-weight materials for swimsuits. In 1916, the company first used the name Jantzen as their trademark and went on to specialize in swimsuits.
Scope and Contents:
This collection has a thorough representation of company newsletters, Jantzen Yarns, and many sample and print catalogues from the 1970s which show the Jantzen clothing and swimwear lines for misses, juniors, and men during that time. There are several company histories written by Zehntbauer which were printed in Jantzen Yarns. The photographs, though few in number, are a good sampling documenting Jantzen headquarters, as well as employees at work. The films, are aimed at store buyers and feature different lines of Jantzen clothing or swimwear, or are training films for sales representatives.

Series 1: SAMPLE CATALOGUES, 1974-1976, includes sample catalogs are for misses, juniors, and men.

Series 2: PUBLICATIONS, 1925-1977, contains issues of Jantzen Yarns (house publication), 1925-1973 (some of the covers of the newsletters include cover art by noted "pin-up" artists George Petty, Jon Whitcomb, Pete Hawley, and Rene Gruau); Intra-Views (company newspaper); and clothing and swimwear catalogues for women, juniors, and men, 1972-1977.

Series 3: COMPANY HISTORY, 1921, 1923-32, 1973, includes photocopies of various company histories written by John A. Zehntbauer; a photocopy of a patent; and an annual report for 1973 (many volumes of Jantzen Yarns [Series 2] have annual reports as an issue).

Series 4: PHOTOGRAPHS, ca. 1920s/30s, consists of a group of photos (originally from an album) showing the main office building, warehouses, and photographs of groups of employees at work or in posed groups.

Series 5: AUDIOVISUAL MATERIALS, 1951, 1976, undated, is divided into two subseries. Subseries 5.1: Films, circa 1951, undated, consists of four films produced for store buyers and sales representatives. Subseries 5.2: Slide Presentation Materials, 1976, includes slides, script, and audiocassette for an in-plant presentation on the Misses Fall 1976 line of Jantzen clothing.
Arrangement:
This collection is arranged into five series.

Series 1: Sample Catalogues, 1974-1976

Series 2: Publications, 1925-1977

Series 3: Ccompany History, 1921, 1923-32, 1973

Series 4: Photographs, circa. 1920s-1930s

Series 5: Audiovisual Materials, 1951, 1976, undated

Subseries 5.1: Films, 1951

Subseries 5.2: Slide Presentation Materials, 1976
Biographical / Historical:
Known primarily for its swimsuits, the Jantzen Knitting Mills are located in Portland, OR. John A. Zehntbauer and Carl C. Jantzen founded the company in 1910. It was then called the Portland Knitting Co. and consisted of a retail store and "a few knitting machines on the second floor" where heavy sweaters, woolen hosiery and other articles of clothing were manufactured.

The two partners were intent on expanding their company, especially by means of a product that would give them an edge in the highly competitive knitting industry. Fortunately, a member of a rowing club approached them one day and asked if they could make him a pair of rowing trunks "of a rib stitch." The success of this item led to the company's specialization in the manufacture of swimsuits in the elastic rib stitch. A patent for this suit was granted in 1921. Carl Jantzen's inventiveness was responsible for the development of an automated circular knitting machine, a derivative of hosiery knitting machines, with a fine needle-bed which produced the light-weight material needed for swimsuits. It also reduced the cost of knitting dramatically.

In 1916 the company first used the name Jantzen as a trademark in advertising, and in 1918 they changed the name officially to the Jantzen Knitting Mills. The name was again changed in 1954 to Jantzen Inc.

Early advertising campaigns were aimed at encouraging swimming. One of the longest used slogans was "the Suit that Changed Bathing to Swimming." An idea for a cut-out sticker of a "diving girl" in a red Jantzen suit and knitted cap was reported in a 1923 issue of Men's Wear N.Y. as "proving popular with auto-drivers--[and that] many windshields carry as many as 3 or 4 of the figure." It also became the Jantzen logo. Billboards were used extensively with artwork by George Petty and McClelland Barclay. Ads in Life and Vogue in 1921 represented the first national advertising of the bathing suits and established the product as "first class."

Before the peak year of 1930, the firm operated factories in Canada, England, and Australia, in addition to exporting to many countries in Europe, South America, and the Phillippines. After the Depression years of 1931-34, a decision was made to license companies in Europe, rather than operating there. The decision was based on the uncertainty of U.S. foreign trade regulations and on the awareness of Zehntbauer, after a trip to Europe, of the political changes taking place.

In 1936 Jantzen made one of its greatest plant investments: a new spinning mill which was considered "the most up to date dying and spinning mill in the U.S." It enabled Jantzen to experiment with different fibers instead of having to purchase them from other mills. In the same year the firm hired their first female designer.

In 1937 serious considerations of making satin latex swimsuits--which were cut and sewn--were resolved in favor of keeping the elastic knit stitch. By 1973 sales and earnings were the highest in the 63 year history. Employees numbered 4,500.

Currently, Jantzen is owned by Vanity Fair Corporation. The company also operates an archives which is limited to serious research inquiries. Some historical information may also be located on their website: http://www.jantzen.com.
Related Materials:
Materials in the Archives Center

Industry on Parade Film Collection (AC0507)

Contains a 1952 film about Jantzen entitled "Suited for Swimming!" which describes the manufacture of swim suits at the company's Portland, Oregon, plant.
Separated Materials:
Related collections in the Division of Home and Community Life. The collection includes bathing and swimming suits and men's, women's and children's clothing (tennis and exercise outfits, blouses, and trousers (1912-1990s). Items have been donated by Jantzen as well as private donors. Also available in the Division are samples of advertisements from the 1940s to 2000 and news articles about Jantzen.
Provenance:
Donated by Jantzen, Inc. in November 1973 and November 1978.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research use.
Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Reproduction permission from Archives Center: reproduction fees may apply.
Topic:
Bathing suits  Search this
Clothing Manufacturers  Search this
Knitting companies (Mills)  Search this
Textile industry  Search this
Textile fabrics  Search this
Genre/Form:
Business records -- 20th century
Catalogs
Photograph albums -- 20th century
Citation:
The Jantzen Knitting Mills Collection, 1925-1977, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0233
See more items in:
Jantzen Knitting Mills Collection
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0233
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