Stall & Dean Co. History

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Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby vintagebrett » February 18th, 2013, 11:46 am

Here are some bits and pieces of information of the history of the Stall & Dean Co., all culled from the pages of the Sporting Goods Dealer"

This excerpt is from the September 1900 issue of The Sporting Goods Dealer:
"This is an old established factory with a new name. In 1892 the factory was started by the well known house of Dame Stoddard & Co., formerly Dame Stoddard & Kendall, of Boston. It was their original intention to manufacture simply athletic clothing for their own consumption. Such was their success, however, that new articles were constantly added to the line and year by year the trade was increased until their factory accounts were in nearly every State in the Union. Mr. Stall had been connected with Dame Stoddard & Co. since 1886 (until the change in 1899), and being an athlete, was placed in charge of the athletic department when opened in 1890. Under his management the business was increased in all directions, particularly in the manufacturing line. On the 15th of March, 1899, the factory, stock and good will of the manufacturing business was purchased by W.T. Stall and C.H. Dean, who started a partnership under the present style. Mr. dean, who is a cousin to Mr. Stall, had been connected with the old firm since the factory was started, as foreman and manager and a great deal of the success must be attributed to his personal efforts. The concern is today, making a line of athletic clothing that is second to none in the country, and is also very strong on leather goods, such as striking bags, football shin guards, etc. The aim of the new concern is to make articles of practical use to athletes. Both Mr. Stall and Mr. Dean are athletically inclined and their knowledge of different sports has been of great assistance to them. They have several specialties in football goods that are new and should interest every dealer. Their new catalogue is now ready and can be had by addressing the factory at Brockton, Mass."

This excerpt is from 1902:
"The Stall & Dean Manufacturing Co. of Brockton, Mass. recently found that to conduct their business on a satisfactory basis it was necessary to increase their manufacturing capacity, preferably by locating a branch factory at some point convenient for supplying the Western trade. Chicago was the point selected, where a plant giving 12,000 square feet of floor room was leased and equipped for a commencing operations about December 1st. The location is at 61 and 63 Union Park Court. For the last 10 years the Stall & Dean Mfg Co. has labored at a disadvantage in taking care of their Western trade in base ball goods, etc. and filling orders from that territory as promptly as those from the East, but this difficulty will now be wholly obviated. This firm is putting on the market a base ball bat for which they have obtained a patent. It is called the Stall & Dean Biffer and it's novel feature is the handle, which is made of eight sections of rattan and a center core of hickory, and is securely fitted, glued and dovetailed into the ash. It is claimed that it possesses more driving power than any other bat with positively no jar or sting to the hand when the ball is struck."

Below are some ads from the company from the early part of the century. You'll notice one has some racist overtones and in no way am I condoning this practice, I'm just posting it to show the company in a historical perspective. There is also a picture of the owners.
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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby mikesglove » February 18th, 2013, 9:05 pm

Great info Brett! Here is a photo of the Stall & Dean Factory in Brockton, MA. from 1915 on. It is at the corner of Church and Montello Sts. It has redevelopment funds from the city to be converted to residential condos. Brett and William better hurry before it's converted. There are probably a lot of NOS gloves laying around inside. Be sure to bring a ladder.
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Here are a couple of their early products. Fabric swatch catalog in amazing condition.
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Below is the equally amazing "America Biffer" bat endorsed by Jake Stahl.
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Below is an old "Biffer" model stamped with the patent date of Jan. 29, 1895
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Here is the patent drawing.
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Brett's advertisement touts the advantages of the pieced-together "Biffer" bat handle. Biffer is an archaic slang term for "big hitter". The "Biffer" was Ty Cobb's favorite because of its liveliness.
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Below is a die cut advertisement featuring Ty Cobb's endorsement of Stall & Dean gloves.
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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby vintagebrett » February 19th, 2013, 8:03 am

William's wife's architectural firm is working on the S&D building.
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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby softball66 » February 19th, 2013, 10:39 am

I did a short interview with Dick Stall for the Newsletter years ago. He sent me a photocopy of a 1911 (I believe) catalog that he didn't want shown to a lot of people.
LOL! : :roll:
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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby Number9 » February 19th, 2013, 2:23 pm

vintagebrett wrote:William's wife's architectural firm is working on the S&D building.


True, but I'm not sure what's happening with it at the present time. Last I heard it was purchased by a developer in Cambridge and plans to do anything with it have stalled. It's unfortunate to say the least. I'm dying to get in there despite the fact that I know it's completely empty. There is a building behind the main factory that was once the shipping department. That building is currently being renovated and gives hope that something will come of the factory.
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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby Number9 » May 23rd, 2013, 12:08 am

Looks like the factory renovation project is a go. Here's a link.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/region ... story.html
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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby Number9 » June 19th, 2014, 2:38 pm

Mike's recent post on the Victor thread reminded me of the Stall & Dean factory in Brockton, Mass. This building and project has changed hands a few times over the last few years. The current owners have done a remarkable job of finishing the exterior. I'm not sure exactly what is happening inside, but I've heard condos and/or office space. Whatever it is will be a tremendous improvement over it's recent blight. It's really beautiful in person. Now to get the rest of the neighborhood in shape.....

S&D1.JPG
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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby mikesglove » June 19th, 2014, 3:14 pm

Whoever did the work did a great job. Really a tasteful restoration. Not many brick buildings left in CA. Most are torn down because of the expense of seismic retrofitting. There were a lot of brick and stone winery buildings in my area at one time. Some are long gone but because of the influx of wealthy entrepreneurs, there are a few that have been steel reinforced and painstakingly restored. I'll send a photo along of one restored beauty that was left abandoned with no roof for at least 50 years.
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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby vintagebrett » June 20th, 2014, 7:07 am

No seismic retrofitting here in New England although we do get small quakes once in a while. There are numerous brick buildings as you drive around here - many are being turned into condos, apartments, etc. There is an old axe factory a few towns over for me that has ben an antiques store for many years and also has office space for small businesses. It's rare you drive thru a town on a river here that doesn't have numerous brick factory buildings.
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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby mikesglove » May 21st, 2015, 6:02 pm

Below are views of the interior of the Montello Station-Lofts formerly known as the old Stall & Dean factory on Montello St. in Brockton, MA. Really nice job of preserving and showing off structural elements of the old building. I love the sandblasted brick and original distressed flooring. The new steel stairwell seemingly floating withing the red brick walls is killer!

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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby mikesglove » May 22nd, 2015, 1:30 pm

After seeing the renovations of the Montello St. factory of Stall & Dean, I re-read Brett's post of S&D history in the old issue of Sporting Goods Dealer.
Given that Stall & Dean moved to the Montello St. location in 1916, I wondered where the first S&D factory of 1899 was located.
That was a tough one but I eventually found the address at 147 Pleasant St. in Brockton, MA. The photo is below. Whole lot of nothing there now.

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With some digging I found a photo of the original Pleasant St. building circa 1900. The factory was leased from the W.L. Douglas Shoe Co. who no longer used the building.

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I looked through a 1910 S&D catalog and found another photo of the Pleasant St. factory. Stall & Dean had expanded from a single building by 1910 and the
factory site included the S&D storeroom and factory on the right and two new subsidiaries joined by an overhead wakway, the Harding Knitting Co. and Golden Athletic Shoe Co.

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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby mikesglove » May 23rd, 2015, 12:32 pm

Stall & Dean eventually outgrew the Pleasant St. factory and moved into the old Lilly Brackett Shoe Co. building on Mentello St. circa 1916.

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Below is the same view of the factory from the 1990's while the building was vacant and derelict.

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One more view of the interior of the Montello factory after restoration into the Station-Lofts. Many cast iron shoe forms were found amid the rubble from the days of Lilly Brackett. The designers incorporated them into the brick walls. No S&D buckle webs or Ty Cobb model gloves were reported found amid the rubble.

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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby mikesglove » August 17th, 2017, 2:39 pm

Here is a link to a nice Stall & Dean write-up.
http://www.antiquefootball.com/stall_dean.htm
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Re: Stall & Dean Co. History

Postby mikesglove » August 28th, 2017, 11:04 pm

A few Stall & Dean rarities. I'm tellin' ya, JD's glove library contains a lot of cool stuff. http://www.baseballglovecollector.com
The Heinie Wagner webbed finger model circa 1914.
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Side laced fielders gloves circa 1912.
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The last one may be a surprise. A stitched version of the "hole in the palm" patent on a base mitt circa 1912.
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