The first thing to go on the road to decrepitude is usually the eyes. So it was with me. About four years ago I first needed reading glasses. So I went to the optometrist. This last December, I went in for a check up and my eyes had decayed further so I needed a new prescription. I sauntered over to the optical department and told them I would like to see their frames that were made by members of our extended American family. Blank stare, which is never good at an optical department. We don’t carry any, I was told. Well maybe you should start carrying some, I said. We don’t know of any American brands, I was told. So I decided to help them out by introducing them to three American made eyeglass companies. And now I will introduce those same three firms to you.
Kala’s plastic glass frames are made in California. They make about 40+ styles. My favorites are the Ashton
and the Hixx
Shuron is the granddaddy of American optical manufacturers; they have been making glasses in this country since 1865. Classic Shuron styles include the Ronsir
Very old school.
While Art-Craft Optical has not been in business as long as Shuron, they are very well established. Art-Craft Optical Co., Inc., was formed in 1918 by Charles J. Eagle and Otto W. Dechau in Rochester, NY. C. Thomas Eagle currently runs the firm. For many years Art-Craft was housed in the historic Pullman Building in downtown Rochester, NY.
My favorite Art-Craft styles are the Baseball 404
the Baseball 409
I have settled on the Art-Craft Baseball 409. I told my optometrist that I wanted them to order them for me. When he initially balked at ordering the Baseball 409, I told them I was sorry about that but I would be taking my business elsewhere. They eventually agreed to order the glasses. I encourage you to take the same approach with the stores where you shop. Buy the American products on offer, suggest that they offer American products you want to buy, and if they refuse, gently tell them that you will now be buying those products online or at another shop. If we together engage in this polite process of promoting the sales of products made by members of our extended American family, we can do a lot of good.
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