Most people know Abercrombie and Fitch as a clothing store. But Ashley Hlebinsky, the curator emeritus of the Cody Firearms Museums, said it started out much differently.
“What they don’t know is the fact that Abercrombie and Fitch actually got started around 1892,” said Hlebinsky. “And it started off with David T. Abercrombie and Ezra Fitch and they created a sporting goods store in New York City.”
The store sold rifles, shotguns, hunting and fishing equipment and anything else in the outdoor industry. Hlebinsky said it only changed from a sporting goods company in the mid 20th century. The store got lumped in with other brands, and they switched over to making more clothing rather than firearms.
“But it’s one of those things that when you look back in history, I bet you most of the employees of Abercrombie and Fitch would not assume that [the company] got its start as a firearms dealer,” said Hlebinsky.
Museum Minute is a series co-produced with Wyoming Public Media (WPM). A new minute can be heard every Thursday morning at 6:49 a.m. on WPM.