History threads — Rugge factory back in operation at temporary location

Maury Thompson
2 min readDec 5, 2023

The A.S Rugge shirt and collar company was quickly getting back into operation after a Feb. 25 fire destroyed its factory on Park Street.

The company had leased space in the vacant brick factory building that Weil, Haskell & Co. owned on Glen Street.

“The work of placing the building in readiness for occupancy is now under way,” The Morning Star of Glens Falls reported on March 14, 1894. “To start with, Mr. Rugge will put in 30 Wheeler & Wilson sewing machines to be delivered Monday.”

The temporary factory was expected to open March 21.

Once insurance claims were settled, Rugge planned to construct a new two-story brick factory, with a basement, at the Park Street location of his former wooden factory which burned.

In other 1894 garment industry news collected from historic newspapers of the region:

  • “Two carloads of goods — fifty-nine cases — were shipped from Weil, Haskell & Co.’s factory on Saturday,” The Morning Star reported on March 26.
  • “Work was indefinitely resumes at the shirt factory (in Salem) Monday of this week, several cases of which would furnish employment having been received Saturday night,” the Salem correspondent to The Morning Star reported on Feb. 23. “The outlook for the girls was not very promising last week, but it is hoped that everything can now be made successful for all concerned by an increase in orders.”
  • “The Carpenter Shirt Factory in Saratoga started up on full time yesterday after a shutdown of nine months,” The Morning Star reported on April 16.
  • “C.A. Starbuck expects to have his shirt factory in the Crandall block in readiness to commence operations about the first of May. Mr. Starbuck will start with about 120 machines,” The Morning Star reported on April 21.
  • “D.J. Donovan will open a custom shirt factory at 71 Maple Street tomorrow,” The Morning Star reported on May 7, 1894. “Mr. Donovan has had a number of years’ experience in the business, and for some time past has been employed by the Joseph Fowler Company.”
  • “L.C. Piser’s shirt factory is just booming these days. Help is asked for, but, as yet, some of the machines are idle,” the Shushan correspondent reported in The Granville Sentinel on May 4.
  • “The knitting mill started up Tuesday morning to make up some samples, hoping to get orders sufficient to keep running without further stopping,” the Fort Ann correspondent reported in The Granville Sentinel on May 11.
  • “The Empire Shirt Company, Warrensburg, are putting in fifty new machines,” The Morning Star reported on Sept. 8.

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Maury Thompson

Freelance history writer and documentary film producer from Ticonderoga, NY