Prison mention, fabric history,
Why prison grade, I hear you wondering?
Narrator: “no one was wondering”
Well, because the American Correctional Association created the first national standard for cotton ticking fabrics
If ticking is labeled ACA, then you know it meets certain standards for thread count, thickness, and feather resistance
Probably the only useful thing to come out of the prison system. Other than that Johnny Cash album, of course.
The ACA was originally founded in 1870 to improve welfare of prisoners and ensure humane treatment. But it quickly became a trade organization and by the 1980’s was so corrupt, that one of the judges on its governing panel resigned and published a 21 page essay outlining how corrupt and filled with conflicts of interest the ACA has become
They’ve been dogged by corruption since then, most notably in 2014 when their president was indicted for money laundering, tax fraud, and bribery.
He was sentenced to 19 and a half years in prison
Moral: Fabric history is complicated
fabric history, mystery solved
Ah! I found a Supreme Court Case! There's always a case!
*Quoth the record*
In the year 1834 or about the time, the company introduced an improvement in its manufacture by which it produced a grade or quality of ticking superior to any which it had previously manufactured. For goods of this quality it used in its label or ticket, in place of the single letter "A," the three letters "A.C.A." The original device, with its colored border and printed words, indicating the company by which and the place where the goods were manufactured was retained, the only alteration consisting in the substitution of the three letters "A.C.A." in place of the single letter "A."
[...]The combination of the three letters was probably suggested, as is stated, by the initials of the words in the company's name -- Amoskeag Company -- with the letter "A" previously used, to denote the best quality
Mystery solved, history is fun!
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