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In the land of the pedlar

Almedahls´ history begins in Gothenburg in 1846. It was there that merchant Hans H. Wesslau obtained permission to "establish and run a factory in order to bring about linen and damask woven fabric". In 1919 Almedahls merged with Dalsjöfors Textile Mill AB.

 

Hans H Wesslau (1807-1884)

 

The textile mill in Gothenburg, approximately in the year 1900.

 

Female spinning machine minder at Almedahls.

 

The history of Dalsjöfors Textile Mill before the fusion with Almedahls

Dalsjöfors, situated near the town of Borås, was by the 1700´s already a textile trading place. The pedlars came from these parts - salesmen who went around the farms of Sweden selling fabric. In 1897 three young men decided to establish the Dalsjöfors Textile Mill.

It was claimed that Dalsjöfors, during the great linen epoch was the world´s most modern linen textile mill. But by 1919 it could no longer fend for itself and was purchased by Almedahls in Gothenburg. The company developed substantially over the years, mainly through additional mergers with other linen spinning mills. In 1958 the whole enterprise was moved from Gothenburg to Dalsjöfors where the company is still situated today.

One of Almedahls´ most famous products is the damask table cloth "dragon design" ( a figurehead dragon on a viking ship). It was produced for over 100 years and can be found in countless swedish homes. The design was created by the young artist Signe Sohlman for the world exhibition in Amsterdam in 1877. She died the following year at the age of 24, but became "immortalised" through the "dragon design". Manufactoring ceased in 1989.

 

The history of Alingsås Cotton Mill before the fusion with Almedahls

Englishman Charles Hill from Bolton in Lancashire came to Sweden at the age of 27. He began with Rydboholm´s factory, Sweden´s first mechanised cotton mill. Charles Hill later took part in creating Norrköping´s Cotton Mill where he made his fortune. In 1862 he started up on his own by establishing the Alingsås Cotton Mill. The company grew quickly, having about 100 looms in operation after just to years. At Hill´s death in 1889 the mill occupied three urban sectors in Alingsås where 250 weavers on 400 looms produced three to four million metres of fabric annually.

In 1905 a new textile mill was built in Alingsås by the lake Gerdsken. Several storeys where added during the first half of the 1900´s.

The founder Charles Hill (1816-1889)

 

Alingsås Cotton Mill was amalgamated with Nääs Fabriks AB in 1912. Later, in connection with a large industry rationalisation, the group merged as a subsidiary of Almedahls Dalsjöfors AB. The year was 1961.

During 1999 production has been moved from Alingsås to Kinna for joint production with the company Almedahl-Kinna AB. Head office and other functions remain in Alingsås.

The mill in Alingsås in 1958.

 

 

Sources:

Alingsås Bomull - Ett familjeföretags öden under 100 år, Gunnar Berg

Charles Hill, "Cotton Master", Karin Linton

Almedahls 1846-1996, Tore Thorsson

 

 

 



  Almedahls Alingsås AB, Box 591, 441 16 Alingsås, Sweden
tel: +46(0)322 66 93 00, fax: +46(0)322 66 93 49 info@almedahls.nu
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