Saturday, January 21, 2017

Union Suits - YesterYear

     Munsingwear Underwear:

1930 Munsingwear Union Suits

George D. Munsing wanted to invent a superior underwear with a better fabric. In the late 1800's, union suits were a problem for customers: they were woolen. Even though they were warm, the underwear was itchy and uncomfortable for the wearer.

The one piece suit of long underwear was essential for those who lived and worked in colder climates. George Munsing developed a method for "silk-plating wool." A layer of silk was woven over the surface of wool fabric. The result: underwear that was as warm as wool but much more comfortable.

Munsing had created "itchless" underwear. This textile process was quite innovative for his time. The technique was so popular he was able to start a new underwear company with Frank H. Page and Edward O. Tuttle. They named their new company the Northwest Knitting Company in 1886. The name was changed in 1919 to The Munsingwear Corporation. 

In their early years, the company's production was slow and they found difficult to meet the orders that they received. However, the business grew quickly after investments by Minneapolis businessmen, including Charles Pillsbury and Thomas Lowry.

Their Union Suits became famous throughout the world and the company sold millions to men and boys. Their advertising motto became: "Don't say Underwear, Say Munsingwear!"

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