BLUE BELL / BIG BEN / Wrangler company history.
1897 - 20-year old C.C. Hudson leaves Spring Hill Farm in Williamson County, Tennessee seeking fortune in the emerging textile town of Greensboro, North Carolina. He finds work in an overall factory sewing on buttons for 25 cents a day.
1904 - Hudson's workplace closes. He and a few others buy several sewing machines from the closing company. C.C. Hudson and his brother Homer form the Hudson Overall Company, operating from a loft over Coe Brothers Grocery on South Elm Street in Greensboro.
1919 - Sales of Hudson overalls are booming. The company moves to a larger headquarters and changes its name to Blue Bell Overall Company.
1926 - Big Ben Manufacturing of Kentucky (Est. 1915) purchases Blue Bell for $585,000. The name of the merged companies remains Blue Bell; headquarters remain in Greensboro.
1936 - Blue Bell introduces Super Big Ben Overalls, featuring 100% Sanforized fabric that reduces shrinkage to less than 1%, setting a new standard for the industry.
1947 - Blue Bell Inc. files U.S. federal trademark registration for Big Ben on Oct. 7.
1943 - Blue Bell acquires Casey Jones Company, a manufacturer of work-clothing, and, with it, the rights to Casey Jones’ rarely used brand name – Wrangler.
1947 - Wrangler authentic western jeans, designed by celebrity tailor Rodeo Ben, are introduced to the American consumer. Professional rodeo cowboys Jim Shoulders, Bill Linderman and Freckles Brown wear-test the 13MWZ and endorse the Wrangler name for durability, quality and authenticity.
1948 - Jim Shoulders, World Champion Cowboy, signs on as an official endorsee of Wrangler. He goes on to win a total of 16 world championships, including five All-Around, seven Bull Riding and four Bareback Riding World Titles.
1962 - Blue Bell opens a plant in Belgium and the Wrangler brand is successfully launched in Europe.
1974 - The Pro Rodeo Cowboys Association officially endorses Wrangler jeans.
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