The Amco Clothing Company had its origins in Sydney in 1948 manufacturing butchers aprons and painters drop sheets! It became a well known brand of jeans and other casual wear bfore going into liquidation in 1980. It had morphed into the Amco International Clothing Company by the next year. The brand is now owned by Jagger Australia Pty Ltd and manufactuers in China.
I think this button may be made of horn, as there is a ‘pick’ mark on the back where a tool was used to pry the button from the mould.
Barnet Glass (1849-1918) came to Melbourne around 1876 having learnt the trade of manufacturing waterproofing clothing in Manchester, England. His company, the ‘Pioneer Rubber Company’ manufacturered ‘Hercules’ brand waterproof clothing from 1893 until 1905 when the company was bought out by Dunlop Rubber Company. (Barnett would start another company to import and manufacture car tyres, which was later also bought by Dunlop).
Over many years several tailors and manufacturers have used this slogan and/or brand name. The original “Can’t Tear ‘Em” tailors were Messers Turnball and W. Shortal of Albury.
Wodonga and Towong Sentinel, 7th September 1894. This is the earliest advert in Trove with the ‘Can’t tear em’ slogan. They had the advert placed sideways on the page to stand out! Note the two elephants.
In Townsville, Carse’s were selling “Miners Moles, Can’t Tear ‘Em” in 1903-4. From 1917 onwards ‘Can’t Tear ‘Em’ work trousers were being sold in Queensland. These may have been made by Josephson & Sons in Brisbane. Certainly they were using this slogan from around 1931. (Messrs Sargood & Gardiner of Sydney took them to court for copyright infringement in 1935, claiming their branding using a bulldog was being copied, but lost the case, as their bulldog was associated with a ‘Top Dog’ trademark slogan, and was considered substantially different.) The ‘Can’t-Tear-‘Em’ work clothes were being sold Australia wide from around 1949.
Front cover from The Queenslander, 19th December 1935. This was to advertise clothing made by Josephson & Sons of Roma Street, Brisbane. Their clothing’s main branding was ‘Faultless Brand’ but some had branding with a picture of a bulldog and elephant pulling on trouser legs (see the poster on the wall behind the running man above).
The company continues today as CTE P/L who “manufacture and design of combat uniform and specialised protective clothing, industrial workwear, high visibility and flame retardant, wet weather, structual and bushfire assemblies.”
In 1874 J. Davies took over the drapery business of the late J. Exton at 301 George Street, Sydney. In 1889 they moved to 46 Carrington Street where they remained until at least 1894. The advert below comes from the Evening News, 5th January, 1884.
Mr H. E. Harris and Mr Omar Arthur Boyd operated as Harris & Boyd at 313 Pitt Street, Sydney, from around 1923 until 1929. Their slogan was “For a Better Suit”. Harris went on his own, but was in liquidation by 1931. He joined Mr H. V. Harris (presumably a relation) in the Eldon Chambers on Pitt Street in 1932-3.
Mr Boyd registered the name Harris & Boyd as a Limited company in 1936 which operated until 1975.
The Methodist,25th february 1933. Harris had left the partnership before this date.
I bought a vintage sewing basket because I noticed some interesting cards of buttons inside. I’m sure someone in the Victorian button Collectors’ Club will find the basket and its sewing accessories tempting at the next meeting. Whilst on the subject; the Club’s annual Buttonfest on 12th October (and 13th for members as well) is well worth a visit, even for those who have never heard of button collecting. it is held at the Burwood Heights Uniting Church on the corner of Burwood Hwy and Blackburn Roads.
Below are some Rex buttons that have quite a complex 3D design:
New uniform button: Adelaide Universities Regiment
by Stokes & Sons c.1950-1962
The AUR is an Army Reserve unit. based at the Hamstead Barracks in Adelaide, but with elements in the Northern Territory and Tasmania. It was first formed in 1948 and since 1991 has soley focused on training of Reserve officer cadets.