These are two bale tickets were designed to advertise American textile producers. Early American brand building was done through catalogs, flyers, word of mouth, and package labels to indicate the high quality. Bedding supply houses and local craftsmen used those brands to merchandise their products, usually custom made, for the end consumer. Amoskeag ACA wsa the ultra premium ticking brand of the mid-1800s.
Amoskeag Mills' founder Samuel Blodgett, envisioned his enterprise as the "American Manchester", an even greater textile giant than the Manchester, England textile center. Amoskeag Plant No. 1 was finished in 1839. From 1840 on into the early 20th Century, Amoskeag was unrivaled in the quality and quantity of textiles it produced. It was the world's largest textile producer. In 1834, Amoskeag introduced the Powerloom ACA ticking product. It was quickly sought after by mattress markers because of the high quality and durability. Amoskeag was among the few famous early American brands. Over the years, other ticking makers marketed their products as "ACA", too, and that led to a huge legal dispute. Among Amoskeag's customers was Levi Strauss, who purchased Amoskeag blue denim for his famous blue jeans.
Amoskeag's massive manufacturing complex.
A bale "tecket" for another of Amoskeak's textile products. Amoskeag's name was synonymous for "top quality" around the world.
The common word for mattress ticking has an exotic etymology. Tick derives from the Greek word theka; theca was loaned to Latin. Itailian documents from about 1000 A.D. mention theka as a casing cloth for bedding or a mattress.
Fabyan's Chronicle of 1305 writes of "federbeddes rypped the tekys & held theym in the wynde, that the feathers myght be bowyn away". The Latin theca (a case) and Late Latin techa ( a linen case) was basically translitered into English by Fabyan.
The oldest records from the Eleventh Century tell us that the first Italian textiles called ticking were fustian cloths; these were made with a linen warp and a cotton weft. Fourteenth century records noted barchants that were also the same linen-cotton construction.
The weaving expertise for making bed ticks was taken by skilled cotton weaver that migrated from Italy to Germany. By the 16th Century Nurnberg, Hof, Zwickau, Leipzeig and Chemnitz were all spinning and weaving cotton ticks. Old High German adopted the word a ziahha. Those ticking production spread onward to Holland. The Middle Dutch language had the word teke.
As an outcome of the Thirty Years War that devastaed muc of Europe, the ticking and cotton manufacture almost disappeared.
In England, under William III and other subsequent monarchs, skilled weavers and spinners were sought from foreign countries to come and develop England's domsetci industry.
Domestic cotton cloth production seems to originate in 1561 when 406 persons were driven out of Flanders to England (because of religious persecution). Cotton cloth was cited in official English documents in 1595.
Fustian were likely a broad category including ticking. The word descends from Italian fustagno, Latin fustaneus that probably derive from Fostat, a suberb of Cairo, Eygpy where the cloth originated. English adpoted the word as a noun in about 1200.
A new migration of weavers of ticking settled in parts of England near Lancashire. By the 17th Century, Manchester had become the prominengt production center of cottons, fustians, and ticking.
Ticking as a word and as a product officially arrived in England around 1365. The utility purpose of imported ticking was so great, even though domestic English ticking production took nearly 400 years to develop into a power industry, the use of ticking (as a word) for bed products was mature.
Many people think of the word mattress ticking as an inexpensive, utilitarian ACA stripe product used on institutional, hospital, or hotel beds. Nothing could be further from the truth. The unique black stripe used in the popular mattress tick we refer to as "ACA" has been the same pattern for nearly 1000 years!
And Amoskeag Manufacturing Company's ACA has a rich story unto itself. The words ACA became the subject of a trademark dispute between Amoskeag Manufacturing and D. Trainer & Sons, both textile and ticking manufacturers. It ended in the United States Supreme Court case 101 U.S. 51 and the ruling became case law for trademarks ever since!