Garland Manufacturing Company
Manufacturer of Gar-Dur UHMW Polyethylene profiles, UHMW Polyethylene, custom machined parts, and a product line of mallets and soft faced hammers made from the finest water buffalo rawhide.
Garland Manufacturing Company was founded in 1866, by James G. Garland, and incorporated seven years later, in 1873. It was originally called the Loom Picker Company, after its primary product, pickers for the textile industry. Pickers, made from water buffalo hide due to the toughness of the material, were used to weave cloth by moving the shuttle from one side of the loom to the other. In 1899, the company began manufacturing rawhide mallets from water buffalo hide and is today the world’s premier producer of mallets and soft-faced hammers.
In 1950, Garland Manufacturing Company acquired Snocraft Company, located in Norway, Maine. At the time, Snocraft’s sole employee repaired snowshoes manufactured for troops during World War II. Over the course of the following 24 years, employment at Snocraft increased to 50 and the product line expanded to include wooden toboggans, snowshoes and packaged wooden ski sets for children. This division was sold in 1974.
During the early 1950s, the textile industry began to import pickers made of a new plastic material that lasted ten to twelve times longer than the traditional rawhide pickers. Garland realized their future could depend upon this material, and ordered the first 500 pounds of plastic resin material ever brought into North America. The decision to change materials carried with it a substantial risk. Charles Garland, past president of Garland Manufacturing Company, recalls his father, then-president Harry Garland, bringing home the “new” powder to try out in the oven in the family’s kitchen to see how the material would react at different temperatures.
Garland initially experimented with injection-molding the material, but quickly adopted the extrusion process. In the mid 1950s, Garland was the only company in the world to extrude UHMW material, marketing it under the new brand name “Gar-Dur.”
For 97 years, Garland Company was located in a traditional old riverfront mill in Saco, Maine. In 1984, Garland built a fully modern 53,000 square foot manufacturing facility in the new Saco Industrial Park. A recent addition increased manufacturing and office space to 84,000 square feet.
Over the past 40 years, Garland Manufacturing has seen tremendous changes in the plastics industry and has diversified their approach to the marketplace. The textile industry’s change to a shuttle-less loom has resulted in Garland moving away from their original product base. Presently, the company extrudes Gar-Dur Plastic UHMWP in nine different colors and now sells into a countless number of industries and markets worldwide. In 2000, Garland Manufacturing obtained ISO 9002 Certification.
Garland Manufacturing continues to manufacture mallets and soft-faced hammers for all industries worldwide and is the only producer of rawhide mallets in North America. The Garland tradition continues with the Garland family’s sixth generation of consecutive management since its beginnings in 1866.
Associations for Garland
As a leader in our industry we are a proud member of these organizations.
Please feel free to submit a question or comment regarding Garland Manufacturing and how we might assist your business.
Fields marked * are required.