Oldest maker of outdoor wear in US will be based in London

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WOOLRICH, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania's Woolrich Inc., the oldest manufacturer of outdoor wear in the United States, has merged with its European partner and will be headquartered in London.

Woolrich president Nicholas Brayton tells Pennlive.com (http://bit.ly/2fPIj7a ) the Wednesday merger with Italy's W.P. Lavori in Corso will bring more jobs, mill renovations and development of company-owned land near the Pennsylvania mill. The two companies say it will enable Woolrich to grow globally.

The family-owned Woolrich was founded by John Rich in 1830 to make fabric for wives of hunters, loggers and trappers. The company's blankets kept troops warm during the Civil War and its outfits went on Antarctica expeditions led by Adm. Richard E. Byrd.

Brayton says plans also call for investing in Woolrich's 3,500 acres, possibly creating hiking trails, fishing and other outdoor activities.

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