IMPORTANT: Always call the business before going to take the factory tour. We try and keep our data s up-to-date as possible but you should always check first.
Nocona Athletic Goods Company
105 Clay Street,
Nocona, TX 76255
Latitude: 33.789037 Longitude: -97.715388
This tour is free
From the plowed fields of rural America to the busy sandlots of towns and cities, generations of young fellows and gals used to carefully save their money to buy a Nokona baseball glove. It was a glove these players knew would give them every penny of their money back and last, it seemed, as long as they were needed. And these gloves have met that promise.
For nearly three-quarters of a century, young players have dreamed about owning their first Nokona glove. Shown in his Alvin, Texas Little League uniform in the late 1950s (above), Nolan Ryan had just gotten his new Nokona glove at Alvin Hardware Store where his dad had taken him to shop. "You knew you had arrived, when you were able to get a Nokona glove," Ryan admitted. "They asked me if I wanted the more modern kind of glove and I had seen some older pictures of ballplayers, so I chose the older style."
Nokona resisted importing its gloves when nearly every glove maker did so, or simply went out of business, like many did, in the 1960s. It preferred to keep its workers on the job, though it was penalized trying to keep its costs in line with far cheaper foreign-made gloves.
The company also had to drop the skyrocketing endorsements from major league players by the early 1970s. "I think, along with the cheaper imports and the continued escalation of player endorsements, if we'd chosen to stay with it, would have shut our doors," says today's Nocona president, Robby Storey. "We concentrated instead on putting our money and effort toward producing the best ball gloves we could make and trusted that our loyal dealers and customers would stick with us. Many of them did.
"There's something to be said for a two-way loyalty between the seller and the buyer, an implicit trust," Mr. Storey says. "One that guarantees our continuation as a reputable firm and the belief from our customer that he's got a product that has served him well and he can rely upon in the future."
During the tour you will be able to see all the aspects of a glove being made from the cutting to the finished product.
Tours are offered from 8:00 to 11:00 and from 1:00 to 3:00 Monday through Friday.
For handicapped visitors we will try to be accommodating but we suggest you call ahead so we can make sure we have everything ready for your visit.