MARCC Apparel Company Inc. began business in 1997 under the direction of Rick Brownrigg and Doug Rice. Rick brought with him an extensive knowledge of the promotional industry having worked in the capacity of both purchasing and sales at the former K-Brand for 15 years. Doug, having operated his own businessess, including two gas stations, a car wash, and a restaurant, since graduating from college, brought the business knowledge necessary to run a successful company.
MARCC Apparel started out with one employee, but quickly grew, necessitating several moves to accommodate their expanded staff. After searching for several years for the right location and building, 181 Durham Street was purchased in February of 2011. It was quickly agreed that it was important to preserve as much of the original structure and history of the building as possible. Following extensive renovations, MARCC Apparel Company Inc, along with 18 staff members, moved into their new home in November 2011. 181 Durham Street accommodates sales and administration, in-house graphic design, direct print, embroidery, shipping and receiving, and signs.
On August 1, 2010, MARCC's Waterloo location began operation and on April 1, 2013 MARCC Apparel Goderich opened its doors.
A new generation is now working alongside their MARCC founding fathers; Callee Rice and Marc Brownrigg.
Callee attended the University of Waterloo and has an honours bachelor degree in Environment and Business and a diploma in Environmental Assessment. After graduation, she worked in the northern part of Baffin Island, Nunavut, then found her way back home to Mount Forest to settle into her role at MARCC. During her free time Callee can be found outdoors tending her animals & gardens, hiking, hunting, or practicing (very) amateur photography.
Marc has an Honours Bachelor Degree in Health and Business from the University of Waterloo. He has managed Sport and Education programs in Aboriginal communities in Northern Quebec, hockey programs in Pennsylvania, and fitness and sport leagues for Honda of Canada. Outside of work Marc is an avid runner, golfer and all around sports enthusiast.
Mount Forest Foundry
The Mount Forest foundry was established on Durham Street in Mount Forest in 1859 by Robert Kilgour, a native of Scotland. The family business manufactured chiefly agricultural implements and employed two or three men. The Eclipse Machine, either a single or combined reaper and mower, was the leading specialty of the business. In 1861 the building was destroyed by fire.
Shortly after the disaster a new factory was built. The Gazatteer and Directory of the County of Wellington 1867 wrote the following about the Mount Forest Foundry:
The main building is built of brick and is two storeys high besides which in connection, are moulding room (brick) 80 x 30 feet of ground floor, blacksmith and carpenter shops. The establishment turns out about 500 ploughs, 200 stoves, 60 cultivators, 20 drag saws, 25 straw cutters per year, and a large number of other agricultural implements. The machinery is worked by an engine of ten-horsepower. From 16 to 20 workers are employed.
Mount Forest Threshing Machines (1889)
In 1889, Archibald Filshie, with his wife and seven children, took over the foundry. He, also, was a native of Scotland who had operated a foundry in Elora for fifteen years.
While he carried on a general foundry business, manufacturing plows, gang plows, and other articles, his specialty was a threshing machine marketed under the name of "The Favourite" which was widely used throughout Ontario and Western Canada.
In 1907, Filshie retired due to failing health and the business was sold to two of his employees, George L. Ernst and John J. Ernst, who had made the move with him from Elora.
The business was operated under the name of Ernst Brothers, where they continued to manufacture their specialty "The New Favourite", until they retired in 1939.
The company continued to operate under the name Ernst Bros. Limited until purchased in 1963 by Mr. Elmer Shaw of Toronto, who had previously operated a foundry at Midland. Mr Shaw died suddenly in 1964 after which the equipment and machinery were sold at a public auction and the property and building were purchased by the town.
In 1968, Joe and Kathy Meyer and family moved from Kitchener to Mount Forest and opened up a brand new business at 181 Durham Street. It was in a dream that Joe came up with the name Streamline Autobody that would continue to operate at this location for 39 years. The staff grew in the first year from Joe himself to employ an additional three people. Two years later, Joe and Kathy bought the property that had been severed from the original parcel. Over the years, three additions were added to the building as the business grew and prospered, with the final addition being completed in 2004.
The building and business were sold to Adam Ghent in 2007 where it continued to operate until October 2010.
Bringing us back to where we started, MARCC Apparel purchased the building in 2011.