Caswell-Massey History

Caswell-Massey, as one of the oldest operating businesses in the United States, takes pride in its heritage and legacy of quality and service. Our company is history and we like to share our knowledge of history with our customers. We hope you enjoy these pearls of historical information.

T I M E L I N E   I N   H I S T O R Y

Caswell-Massey History & American History


Benjamin Franklin flies his kite, Dr. William Hunter, a Scottish doctor, opens his shop in Newport, Rhode Island. Dr. Hunter formulated Number Six Cologne, which George Washington favored. We offer it unchanged today.
George Washington gives the Marquis de Lafayette a supply of Dr. Hunter's Number Six Cologne to thank him for aiding his tattered Revolutionary Army.


White Rose. We thank Dolley Madison for bringing this fragrance to fame. It was a favorite of this sophisticated lady who loved the essence of white roses. A pure and authentic scent.


John Quincy Adams is elected President and Number Six Cologne comes back to the White House. Adams' direct descendent, Anne Robinson buys the company in 1999.
During his triumphal visit to the United States, the Marquis de Lafayette stops at our Newport store. His purpose: to replenish his supply of Number Six Cologne, which years earlier he had received as a gift from his good friend George Washington.


A branch of the apothecary shop opens in New York. The name officially is registered as Caswell & Hazard Company, Ltd. Bottles used at the time were either amber or cobalt blue embossed with the name Caswell & Hazard, the inspiration for Elixir of Love No. 1.


A fragrance is introduced: Jockey Club a refreshingly dry and racy scent. For the gentleman who prefers one fragrance for all occasions. It is a success!
Caswell-Massey purveys the first slab of Castile Soap on the eve of Abraham Lincoln's inauguration. Lincoln was a seventh generation direct descendent of the first Caswells to land in America in 1668. Note how Lincoln Caswell (pictured) resembles the 16th President.


The Company is renamed Caswell-Massey when the current owner, Newport merchant John Rose Caswell, forms partnership with New York-based businessman William Massey. They have one store in Newport and another in New York City.

Before the Battle of Little Bighorn, General George Armstrong Custer brushes his teeth for the last time with Caswell-Massey's bone-handled Tilbury toothbrush. Found among his personal effects at "the last stand", it remains at the Custer Battlefield National Monument.


Cucumber Night Cream. Thirty jars are shipped to Paris for Sarah Bernhardt, the great actress of the nineteenth century. She found the cream perfect for gently removing heavy theater makeup.
Named for the most aristocratic of towns, Newport Cologne is introduced to society. Its clear, crisp scent is christened a success by the yachtsmen who own the lavish mansions they oh-so-modestly call "cottages".


It's the Roarin' Twenties and New York jazz is in full swing. Flappers dance the night away with the latest fad called The Charleston and a new scent appears on the shelves of the Caswell-Massey store - Casma. Its sophisticated scent seduces stars of the silver screen including Carole Lombard.
Celebration! The ribbon is cut to the entrance of the new Caswell-Massey apothecary shop at the Corner of 48th Street and Lexington Avenue, New York City, in the fashionable Barclay Hotel.


Red Jasmin. Like a red silk dress, vibrant, intriguing and romantic. The new fragrance is made of rare blossoms from the isolated reaches of South America.
New York pharmacist Milton Taylor and his brother Ralph, a long-time Caswell-Massey employee, buy the company.


Almond Cold Cream Soap is launched. Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower try it and like it so much they order it for the White House after his election in 1952.
Caswell reintroduces its mail order catalog. Prior to that, the only known catalogs date from 1904.


Greenbriar takes center stage. It's our first new fragrance in 43 years and it's an instant classic worthy of a tradition that includes the legendary Number Six. A grassy woody scent, Greenbriar is for the man who combines self-assurance with a zest for the out-of-doors.

Responding to requests of loyal consumers, we add new products to the Almond and Aloe line including Hand and Body Emulsion, Hand Cream with Silk and Foaming Bath Gel.


The art of elegant grooming takes a large leap forward with the debut of our 1752 Collection of shaving essentials. It is proudly named for the year of our founding.
In response to letters from our customers, we introduce Sandalwood Cologne, a warm, exotic scent perfectly suited to both men and women.


Dr. Hunter's Original Remedies are recreated. These ten grooming essentials are based on formulas and packaging discovered in the rich historical archives at Caswell-Massey. Proving once again that the past can be a source of innovation, Rosewater & Glycerine Hand Creme wins awards for package design.
Caswell-Massey store on Lexington Avenue, NYC celebrates its 75th anniversary.


To celebrate its 250th birthday, Caswell-Massey offers exclusive limited editions of 30 fragrances past and present in collectible glass-stoppered bottles.

� - Jan 1, 2006