History threads — Bronne shirt factory moves from Hudson Falls to Fort Edward

This is the latest in an occasional series of posts about the history of the garment industry in Warren, Washington, Saratoga and Essex counties.

July 8, 1921 was moving day for the Bronne Shirt Co. factory in Hudson Falls, and the machinery was silent after about 8 a.m., when workers arrived to begin dismantling it.

Ordinarily, the closing of a factory would be cause for consternation.

But in this instance, the machinery wasn’t being moved far — just a mile or two across the border to better quarters on East street in Fort Edward where production was expected to resume on July 11.

“Women are most enthusiastic over the new factory which they claim is going to be an ideal one for working conditions,” The Post-Star reported. “The high ceilings with windows in abundance, fine rest room, and central location are but a new of the comments one has favorably passed upon in speaking of the new Bronne factory.”

Bronne Shirt Co. purchased the former St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church building in Fort Edward, which was being used previously as a basketball gymnasium.

It was the second move in about a year, as the company increased production.

About a year earlier, the company moved from a third floor location in Fort Edward to Hudson Falls.

Product demand had already necessitated more space.

The new Fort Edward factory, all on the ground floor, was to have 75 sewing machines.

Management anticipated adding more machines, as needed.

Sources: The Post-Star June 22, 25, July 9, 1921

Click here to read the most recent previous post in this series.

Freelance history writer and documentary film producer from Ticonderoga, NY