About William Scully Limiteé/Limited

Exerpts taken from "Uniforms of the Canadian Mounted Police"; Boulton James, Turner-Warwick Publications Inc., North Battleford; 1990. Copyright Dr. J.J. Boulton

William Scully Ltd.

The firm of William Scully Ltd. earned a special place in Canadian military history by becoming the first firm to produce regulation headdress and badges in Canada. American military manufacturers had always met the needs of their armed services through production in the United States, but with the exception of a few small items on trial, all Canadian Militia and Police headgear and badges had been designed and manufactured in England and imported.  

William Scully was born in Ontario of Irish parents. As a young man he established a business as a military outfitter in Toronto in 1877, acting as an agent for several British manufactures of uniform headwear, badges, buttons, gold lace and embroidery. He was already well known through military contracts and handled some of the early orders from the North West Mounted Police for forage caps and helmets.

Scully recognized the potential market, and in March 1905 he inquired of the Ministry of Militia and Defence whether a move to manufacture these items in Canada would meet with their favour, assuring them that the quality would be equal to the British products and the prices competitive. Having obtained a positive response from Sir Frederick Borden, he traveled to England to secure the necessary equipment, skilled labour and raw materials to establish a factory in Toronto.

In September 1905, Scully advised the Minister that his production facilities were in place and that he could begin delivery of orders by January 1906.

In 1908 the company moved to University Street, Montreal. The factory was the only one of its kind in Canada, and was then in full operation and able to accept a variety of military and civil contracts for caps and helmets, gold and silver embroidered badges, metal badges, uniform buttons, accoutrements and waterproof clothing. Designs were created and dies for badges and buttons were produced by master craftsmen on the site. Other military items such as swords and spurs, which were not manufactured by the company, were stocked or could be ordered, producing a very complete line of goods.

Headwear Dept.

Metal Dept.

Machine Dept.

Tailoring Dept.

A very complimentary article appeared in the Canadian Military Gazette on August 11, 1908 after a tour of the plant showcased the machinery of the latest design and a large staff of well qualified personnel

Read article (PDF)

William Scully died in 1921 and the management of the company was passed to his sons, first to Colonel William G. Scully from 1921 to 1947, then to Vincent E. Scully from 1947 to 1957. William G. Scully's son, Vincent G. Scully, is currently president of the firm. During this time other Canadian manufacturers appeared, but Scully has remained in the forefront of the industry in Canada.

WILLIAM SCULLY Limitée,Limited
2090 Moreau Montréal, QC, Canada H1W 2M3
Tél: (514) 527-9333    Fax:(514) 521-5942    sales@williamscully.ca

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