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Collection Tier:
Tier 2

Archival Collections
Furniture Industry Archives ➔ Archival Collection #035 - Forslund Factory Machinery

Identifier:
1987.113.52
Description:
Archive Collection #035 - Forslund Factory Machinery contains 9 color photographs, 78 black and white photographs, 22 color slides, 9 8x10 black and white enlargements documenting the removal of furniture manufacturing machinery from the Forslund Furniture Factory. 
Date:
1987
Materials:
Paper
Source:
Gift Of Museum Trust
Rights:

Makers/Donors
Museum Trust

Carl Forslund Jr.

Brothers Forslund Company

Grand Rapids, Michigan

COMPANY HISTORY
1935: Carl Forslund Sr. quits as a salesman for Stickley Bros. to begin his own retail consignment store.
ca. 1948: Carl V. Forslund, Inc. adds catalog and mail order sales.*
1968: Brothers Forslund Company established to succeed Eaton Shops and Grand Rapids Custom Shop in manufacturing furniture for sale through Carl Forslund retail and mail order. Name is later reversed to Forslund Brothers.
1989: Forslund Brothers manufacturing division sold to Nucraft Furniture Company of Comstock Park.
1990: Carl Forslund retail division sold to Custer Office Environments of Grand Rapids.
1991: Manufacturing plant closed.
1992: Retail stores closed.
1993: Limited production of selected Forslund pieces is resumed for a short time through an arrangement with Swartzendruber Hardwood Creations of Goshen, Indiana.

PERSONNEL
The manufacturing, retailing, and mail-order divisions of Forslund were all established by Carl V. Forslund, Sr., who remained in charge of the company from its inception until his retirement in 1972. He was succeded by his sons, who joined the business in the 1940s and 1950s. Carl Forslund, Jr. headed the manufacturing operations, Jon Forslund the retail, and Blake Forslund the overall administrative and financial management of the companies.

PRODUCTS
Forslund specialized in the manufacture of cherry, oak, and walnut furniture, in revivals of various Victorian and Early American styles. The mail-order business adopted a “folksy” style of advertising, which influenced its product line, and had great appeal to its customers. Reproductions and adaptations were made from originals associated with colorful historical figures. Forslund catalogs were filled with pieces named for famous individuals and lively histories of their namesakes. Such pieces as the “Rip Van Lee Chair” and the “Aunt Lucy Ball’s Chair” were produced for decades and became popular favorites for local residents and devoted mail-order customers.

MARKS AND LABELS
Forslund adopted the silhouette of a Merry-Go-Round horse as its trademark and the phrase “Timeless Furniture” as its motto.