Our American Journey
A ride fueled by the unexplainable thing you feel during a handshake. It’s a connection instantly established, one of trust and truth…
Join us on our adventure resulting from a dive into world of motorcycles that started with a 69 year old Harley Davidson and kick started one hell of a sequence of experiences.
It all started with a leap into this new world with my first bike, a 1948 Panhead chopper… this bike quickly made it's mark on me and I was hooked. With in a couple months a tribe was developing and we where on mission to build a 1937 Flathead for The Race Of Gentlemen. No matter what obstacles we hit or what was accomplished we wanted more. Following the race we were on a mission to ride this 80 year old bike across the country.
About Black Bear Brand
Over the last 2 years we have been renewing an American brand from the early 1900’s with our Union of Maker approach to manufacturing. Fueled by curiosity and determination, we are driving the revived Black Bear Brand forward by exploring classic processes, products, places, people - and we will make an impact on the world. This journey has just begun. And it is the start of something with limitless possibilities.
Our ride is fueled by the unexplainable feeling you have during a handshake. It’s a connection instantly established. One of trust and truth. Our journey of creating is fueled by a handshake to the makers, designers, and creators of the past and present. We are a brand built on handshakes.
The original Black Manufacturing’s Black Bear Brand made a product with a purpose, and produced clothing built to last. In 1914, George G. Black built a manufacturing center unlike others for his Black Bear goods. Apart from the ruthless industrialists of his time, he was concerned for the health and welfare of his employees and sought a departure from the sweatshop conditions that were typical of the garment industry. Understanding that aesthetic can live within the functional, he commissioned Andrew Willatzen, an apprentice of architect Frank Lloyd Wright, to create a space with more than 15,000 square feet of windows, a shed roof skylight, direct access for trucks, an overhead sprinkler system, and mill construction. Soon, 550 employees were working hard there, but also enjoyed a rooftop garden where they ate lunches that were sold at cost. The Black family operated Black Manufacturing Co. and produced Black Bear Brand goods until 1998, when cheap, overseas materials and labor forced Black Manufacturing to shutter.
Now and looking forward, our intent is clear: we are the successor to this history, and we will uphold the legacy of the Black Bear Brand by providing only the highest quality goods that meet the demands of function and aesthetic. We are the Standard of the West.
-What It Means to Us-
Producing products through the curation of manufacturers and makers who personify excellence. Through this curation comes an elevation of quality that is built from the learning, growing, and unification of hardworking makers. At Black Bear Brand, materials, people and their stories drive the end product. Together we are the Union of Makers.
Union of Makers
-Where It Begins-
“Union of Makers” is the basis of our approach: collaborating, uniting and making things with others. It also conveys the notion of a team creating well-made, classic goods. Black Bear Brand is a Union of Makers in dedicated support of one another. We include artists, builders, musicians, riders, and creators of all kinds. The resurrection of Black Bear Brand is possible today because it is a curation of people who personify the genuine nature of what the brand was built on in the early 1900’s. Every project is a collaboration that we are intimately engaged in; working together to elevate quality with a pragmatic design approach and youthful curiosity. With each product and project the story grows.