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Who has history of Mitchell's Wool Fat Soap, Ltd.

Hello,

Out of curiosity does anyone know the history of the current business called Mitchell's Wool Fat Soap, Ltd? I understand from the website that they use a formula originally from Fred Mitchell, but my understanding is that Mitchell sold the business and went into full-time missionary work. Who did he sell to? Are they the current company owners? When did the current business form, etc. Again, just curious.
 
I thought about that but I’ve heard they don’t respond to emails unless you are a reseller. That may or may not be true, but I’m afraid if I email them and they don’t respond then I will be annoyed with them and that isn’t good. I’m just trying to not be disappointed by potentially poor customer service.

My recent history of said disappointment is with Lamy, the German pen company. I asked them a question through their “contact us” port but received no reply. I tried again several weeks later and still no reply. This causes me a great deal of displeasure and annoyance. If a company provides a contact portal then they should reply, but if it is only meant for wholesalers then it should be so stated.

The bottom line is I like MWF and I don’t want to dislike them because they dis’d me by not replying.

In any case, I am feeling adventurous and I will email them and let you all know how it goes.
 
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Don’t know much. They came on the market in the mid to late 80’s. They don’t make their own soap. It’s contracted out to a firm using their recipe. Forgot the name off hand. They are nil on any contact except purchasing.


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johnwick

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Best of luck, Ike! Hopefully they’ll respond and you’ll have something terrific to share with us. If not, it’s a shame a company doesn’t care to let us in on a bit of history.
 
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My recent history of said disappointment is with Lamy, the German pen company. I asked them a question through their “contact us” port but received no reply. I tried again several weeks later and still no reply. This causes me a great deal of displeasure and annoyance. If a company provides a contact portal then they should reply, but if it is only meant for wholesalers then it should be so stated.
That is quite surprising.

I collect(ed) pens and always found Lamy customer service outstanding, way above the level that their middle of the market placement would suggest and certainly better than one premium brand that took their name from a mountain on the Swiss/French border.

I am not sure whether the lady in Lamy whose address I am about to send you speaks English, as I also speak German and used that when communicating with her, but maybe she can restore your faith in Lamy.

Good luck and keep using (fountain) pens...


B.
 
Brutus and others,

I did finally contact Lamy via Facebook and they replied right away. Apparently they changed distributors in the USA and contacts by customers were getting lost. Anyway, Lamy responded with good customer service after I found the optimal communication method - just thought you might want to know.

Ike
 
Fred Mitchell the enterprising pharmacist in Bradford England recognised the effects of daily shaving and its effect on the skin. I know a bit of Fred's family, since they attended the same church as I did, and I have done some research into Fred's, life since I live close to Bradford.

Evidently, Fred noticed in the early part of the 20th century that wool sorters, working in many of Bradford's woollen mills had such lovely skin and hands whilst working day after day in rough and manually intensive arduous conditions . He discovered and concluded it was due to contact with the lanolin in the sheep fleeces on their skin and their hands. Hence, he marketed a range of lanolin based hand soap products including the famous MWF shaving soap. (The products can be purchased from the company's website direct from Bradford, note there's no online ordering, but orders can be placed either by telephone or mail)

If that's what lanolin can do for for the hands just think of what it can do for your face

There's a biography for Fred's life entitled 'Climbing on Track' which was the last. black box recorded message. of the pilot of the de Havilland DH 106 Comet in which he died flying out to China. Since later in life he became a director of the China Inland Mission. The plane crash was a result of de Havilland's Comet metal fatigue problems
 
Fred Mitchell the enterprising pharmacist in Bradford England recognised the effects of daily shaving and its effect on the skin. I know a bit of Fred's family, since they attended the same church as I did, and I have done some research into Fred's, life since I live close to Bradford.

Evidently, Fred noticed in the early part of the 20th century that wool sorters, working in many of Bradford's woollen mills had such lovely skin and hands whilst working day after day in rough and manually intensive arduous conditions . He discovered and concluded it was due to contact with the lanolin in the sheep fleeces on their skin and their hands. Hence, he marketed a range of lanolin based hand soap products including the famous MWF shaving soap. (The products can be purchased from the company's website direct from Bradford, note there's no online ordering, but orders can be placed either by telephone or mail)

If that's what lanolin can do for for the hands just think of what it can do for your face

There's a biography for Fred's life entitled 'Climbing on Track' which was the last. black box recorded message. of the pilot of the de Havilland DH 106 Comet in which he died flying out to China. Since later in life he became a director of the China Inland Mission. The plane crash was a result of de Havilland's Comet metal fatigue problems
Mitzie,

Thank you for the background on Fred Mitchell. It is too bad he and others died in that plane crash. Who knows where he would have gone or what else he would have accomplished?

Now, did MWF languish after his death or what became of the company? Are the owners today Mitchell family members or how did they become the owners of MWF?

Inquiring minds want to know. :)

Fred, thanks again for your thoughtful reply!
 
Don’t know much. They came on the market in the mid to late 80’s. They don’t make their own soap. It’s contracted out to a firm using their recipe. Forgot the name off hand. They are nil on any contact except purchasing.


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That's news to me. I thought it was made in-house
 
Checking their address on Google Earth, the building on the front and that in the backyard, it looks like a storage and office place, not a factory.
 
I have no idea where MWF makes their soap, but I suspect the production is closer to some artisan soaps than the bath soaps made by industrial giants such as Proctor and Gamble, Unilever, and Colgate Palmolive. Many artisan products are made in kitchens, garages, and workshops associated with residences, stores or warehouses. The greatest need for space comes in warehousing soaps during the curing period and the storing of finished product awaiting sale.
 
Interesting, I never knew anything about him. Tidbits others may know much of this but I found while searching after reading this thread:
  • Quote from the manufacturer: MITCHELL’S WOOL FAT SOAP was first produced in the early 1930’s by Bradford chemist Fred Mitchell who realised that the natural lanolin content of wool fat, which kept the hands of local sheep shearers and wool sorters so exceptionally soft, could also be beneficial to delicate complexions and sensitive skins. A simple and natural product, this soap is still made to Mr Mitchell’s original formula, based on a recipe from the turn of the century and incorporating lanolin from the wool fat as the key ingredient.
  • Based on the MWF label that recipe must have been 1893. With such a precise date, I wonder where that original formula was from??
  • The "Climbing on Track" biography was originally published in December 1953. A biography of Fred Mitchell, a business man, preacher, a Keswick convention chairman and family man who died in the 1953 Comet crash near Calcultta. This brief and moving story of a man who lived a fruitful life, tragically cut short.
 
It is a superb soap and along with Tabac is one of the only two I use. If you live in the UK then it is very inexpensive, even in the ceramic dish. It has a mild, clean, and for me a comforting scent. I occasionally grate MWF and add vintage Brut, Old Spice, or Aramis to make a scented soap and it works very well indeed. For me it provides a wonderful post shave feel, although some find it difficult to lather.
 
It is a superb soap and along with Tabac is one of the only two I use. If you live in the UK then it is very inexpensive, even in the ceramic dish. It has a mild, clean, and for me a comforting scent. I occasionally grate MWF and add vintage Brut, Old Spice, or Aramis to make a scented soap and it works very well indeed. For me it provides a wonderful post shave feel, although some find it difficult to lather.
I use Mitchell's lanolin as a preshave
 
Interesting, I never knew anything about him. Tidbits others may know much of this but I found while searching after reading this thread:
  • Quote from the manufacturer: MITCHELL’S WOOL FAT SOAP was first produced in the early 1930’s by Bradford chemist Fred Mitchell who realised that the natural lanolin content of wool fat, which kept the hands of local sheep shearers and wool sorters so exceptionally soft, could also be beneficial to delicate complexions and sensitive skins. A simple and natural product, this soap is still made to Mr Mitchell’s original formula, based on a recipe from the turn of the century and incorporating lanolin from the wool fat as the key ingredient.
  • Based on the MWF label that recipe must have been 1893. With such a precise date, I wonder where that original formula was from??
  • The "Climbing on Track" biography was originally published in December 1953. A biography of Fred Mitchell, a business man, preacher, a Keswick convention chairman and family man who died in the 1953 Comet crash near Calcultta. This brief and moving story of a man who lived a fruitful life, tragically cut short.
That’s as much history as I can find! Tough to tell where the soap manufactured or by whom.

MWF is a favorite: top notch lather IMO! Smells like ‘soap’ without the emphasis on scent that ‘artisan’ soaps have these days.
 
I have no idea where MWF makes their soap, but I suspect the production is closer to some artisan soaps than the bath soaps made by industrial giants such as Proctor and Gamble, Unilever, and Colgate Palmolive. Many artisan products are made in kitchens, garages, and workshops associated with residences, stores or warehouses. The greatest need for space comes in warehousing soaps during the curing period and the storing of finished product awaiting sale.
Most artisans do not have the equipment to make re milled soap as the equipment cost big bucks and require a large capitol investment. I am not aware of any artisans other than Green Mountain who can accomplish this kind of production. Just and FYI MDC is naturally dried for many months to achieve the hardness. I love both soaps
Hope this helps
 
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