Talk:Hillerich & Bradsby

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Historic Dates in the History of Hillerich & Bradsby[edit]

1842 - J. Michael Hillerich brings his family from Baden-Baden, Germany to Baltimore, Maryland in the United States. After a short time, the family moves to Louisville, Kentucky.

1859 - J. Fredric Hillerich has his own business "running a cooperage" in Louisville, he had worked for his father as an apprentice before starting his own business. The name of the business was "J. F. Hillerich, Job Turning." The two-story brick building was located at 22 Clay Street, near the Ohio River, in downtown Louisville.

1875 - J. F. Hillerich moves his business to First Street, between Main and Market Streets. There, he continued to do job-lot turnings of roller skids, bed posts, tenpins, duckpins, wooden bowling balls, newel posts, handrails, and porch columns that dignified Louisville mansions built in that period.

1880 - John A. "Bud" Hillerich, 14 years old, started learning his father's trade by service as an apprentice in J. F. Hillerich's woodworking shop.

1884 - "Bud" Hillerich turns the first wooden baseball bat for Pete "The Old Gladiator" Browning, who played for the Louisville Eclipse Baseball Team of the American Association. This was actually the first Louisville Slugger bat ever made.

1890 - Simmon's Hardware Company of St. Louis signs an agreement with the Hillerichs to handle all bat sales, except those for professional baseball players and a few chosen outlets; the bat turned by young Bud Hillerich six years before has now become known as the "Falls City Slugger."

1894 - The soon-to-be-world-famous name "Louisville Slugger" is registered with the United States Government as an official trademark.

1897 - The name of the firm is changed to "J. F. Hillerich & Son."

1901 - Because of expanded growth, new manufacturing quarters had to be found, so the company moved its operations to Preston Street, between Finzer and Jacob Streets in Louisville.

1905 - On September 1, 1905, Honus Wagner, "The Flying Dutchman," signed a contract giving J. F. Hillerich & son permission to use his autograph on Louisville Slugger bats. Not only was Wagner the first of countless baseball stars to sign a contract with the Hillerichs, but was the first known professional athlete endorsement of a retail product.

1908 - Perhaps the greatest baseball player of all time, Ty Cobb, signs a contract with J. F. Hillerich & Son for autographed Louisville Slugger bats.

1910 - A disastrous fire severely damages the bat factory. Rebuilding soon begins.

1911 - While rebuilding from the fire is in progress, the Hillerichs prevail upon Frank W. Bradsby, a young buyer from Simmon's Hardware, to join the company, he assumes responsibility for the firm's sales policies.

1911 - The company name is lengthened slightly as it becomes "J.F. Hillerich & Son Co."

1916 - The name of the company makes the last change in its history to become "Hillerich & Bradsby Company."

1916 - Hillerich & Bradsby Company manufactures the first golf club in its history. This early date makes H&B one of the oldest golf club manufacturers in the country.

1924 - A slip on an icy street leads to the death of J. Fred Hillerich.

1925 - Because of the increasing popularity of its new golf club, the company purchases a large warehouse on Finzer and Jackson Streets from the American Tobacco Company. This building houses new golf club manufacturing; the company also moves its offices into this new location.

1933 - The first use of the name "PowerBilt" on golf clubs made by H&B.

1934 - Hillerich & Bradsby Company celebrates the 50th anniversary of the turning of the first Louisville Slugger baseball bat.

1937 - The catastrophic flood of 1937 hits H&B hard. The offices and parts of the factory are damaged. Although the material loss is of small consequence, the tremendous strain and hard work brought on by the flood contribute to the death of Frank Bradsby.

1941-45 - H&B aids in the war production effort with the manufacture of bats, M1 carbine stocks and tank pins for the United States Armed Forces.

1946 - At the age of 80, John A. "Bud" Hillerich dies en route to the Annual Baseball Meetings. He is succeeded as President by son, Ward A. Hillerich.

1949 - Ward Hillerich dies and is succeeded by his brother, John A. Hillerich, Jr.

1966 - H&B purchases Wally Enterprises in Wallaceburg, Ontario. This marks the firm's entry into the ice hockey stick business.

1968 - Hillerich & Bradsby Company moves its corporate offices to the Portland Federal Building in downtown Louisville.

1969 - At the death of John A. Hillerich, Jr., his son, John A. Hillerich, III, assumes leadership of the company.

1970 - H&B contracts Alcoa Aluminum Company to manufacture the first aluminum bat for Hillerich & Bradsby Company.

1973 - Because of inadequate production and warehousing facilities, H&B purchases a building in Jeffersonville, Indiana and moves the golf production to "Slugger Park."

1974 - Louisville Slugger bat production moves to Slugger Park.

1975 - H&B enters the glove and mitt business with its first Louisville Slugger line of baseball and softball gloves.

1978 - H&B purchases the aluminum bat manufacturing facilities at Santa Fe Springs, California from Alcoa.

1984 - H&B celebrates the 100th anniversary of the first Louisville Slugger baseball bat.

1995 - H&B moves the World's Largest Baseball Bat in front of the new headquarters and museum on Main Street, in Louisville.

1996 - H&B moves into the new headquarters and museum on Main Street, in Louisville, Kentucky.

By Christopher Hillerich


I happen to own a wooden softball ball with the Hillerich & Bradsby Company logo on it. It looks to be very old. Is there any way of knowing it's worth?  —Preceding unsigned comment added by Liltermight (talkcontribs) 00:23, 19 January 2010 (UTC) 


They don't make hockey sticks anymore. Sher-Wood uses the TPS brand now. Can anybody find out how this came about, and add it in? (talk) 05:08, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

john hillerich[edit]

j.f. hillerich opend his wood working shop in louisville in 1855.birth oct. 15, 1866.death nov. 28,1946. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:03, 27 October 2014 (UTC)