Red Man

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For other uses, see Redman (disambiguation).
Red Man
Private
Industry Chewing Tobacco
Founded 1904
Headquarters Owensboro, Kentucky, USA
Slogan "America's Best Chew"
Website Redman.com
Barn painted with Red Man advertisement, Macon Township, Michigan

Red Man is a brand of chewing tobacco in the United States which was first introduced in 1904.[1]

Red Man has traditionally come as leaf tobacco, in contrast to twist chewing tobacco or the ground tobacco used in snuff. It is made by the Pinkerton Tobacco company of Owensboro, Kentucky. In 1985, Pinkerton was acquired by a Swedish corporation, and after further corporate reshuffling, the Red Man brand now falls under the umbrella of the Swedish Match company, which in turn is owned primarily by institutional investors. The proportion owned by non-Swedish investors is approximately 80%.[2]

History[edit]

Early in its history, Red Man advertisements were painted on the sides of barns, featuring an endorsement from baseball player Nap Lajoie: "Lajoie chews Red Man, ask him if he don't."[3] Red Man was initially sold in a few Midwestern states; it expanded (in 1954) into the South and then (in 1963) largely nationwide.[1] The corporation's marketing material describes Red Man's consumer base: "A large number of consumers work outdoors and enjoy hunting, fishing and watch [sic] auto racing."[1] Contemporary materials from Swedish Match also suggest that the brand name came from something of a homage to American Indians.[1]

Marketing tie-ins with rural and outdoor sports have been a hallmark of the Red Man brand. From 1952 to 1955, Red Man produced a series of baseball cards, the only tobacco company to do so after 1920.[4] The sets are valuable due to the appearance of 25 of the top players of 1952-55. Some valuable cards include players such as Stan Musial, Yogi Berra and Willie Mays. Since then, the brand has sponsored competitive events including the "Red Man-All American Pulling Series", a tractor pulling circuit, and the "Red Man All-American Bass Championship", a fishing competition.[5][6] In 1991, under pressure from the Federal Trade Commission, which was enforcing a 1986 U.S. statute banning television ads for smokeless tobacco, Red Man agreed to stop displaying its "product logo, selling message or the color or design of the tobacco product or its package" during televised coverage of the tractor pulls.[5] The competitive fishing circuit that culminated in the Bass Championship was sponsored by the company and called the "Red Man Tournament Trail" from 1983 to 2000, after which Wal-Mart took over as the name sponsor.[7]

A legendary golf tournament was founded in 1976 at Applewood Golf Course in Omaha, Nebraska, and was called simply, "the Redman." The tournament is a single round, flighted 18-hole event, played in a two-man scramble format. The tournament is managed each year by its annual participants and is open to invitees of previous years' participants. The tournament is held each year on the third weekend in July, normally coinciding with the British Open. The tournament has grown in popularity, starting with just a handful of nearby apartment residents adjacent to the golf course. The event now boasts an annual participation of nearly 150 golfers of all skill levels. The tournament is generally considered a fun event, with golfers who take it or themselves too seriously receiving ridicule. The winning team in each flight is rewarded with second-hand jackets at an awards dinner following the golf, poking fun at the Masters' green jacket. The tournament has been played for forty consecutive years. Players have been known to travel each year from Texas, Arizona, California, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and many other places to re-unite with their fellow "Redmen." The tournament is not officially sanctioned by or sponsored by the Pinkerton Tobacco Co LP or its affiliates. It is not known if the Pinkerton Tobacco Co LP is even aware that the participants have promoted its flagship product at no cost for decades. The participants in the annual event gauge their expected abilities to perform by declaring whether or not they are "Redman Ready".

Flavors and varieties[edit]

Chewing tobacco[edit]

  • Red Man Loose Leaf Original
  • Red Man Loose Leaf Golden Blend
  • Red Man Loose Leaf Silver Blend
  • Red Man Loose Leaf Select
  • Red Man Plug
  • Red Man Golden Blend Totems

Red man mint blend

Dipping tobacco[edit]

  • Red Man Fine Cut Natural
  • Red Man Long Cut Straight
  • Red Man Long Cut Wintergreen

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d History of chewing tobacco. Swedish Match. Retrieved July 15, 2006.
  2. ^ Annual Report 2005, page 6, retrieved February 16, 2007.
  3. ^ Nunberg, Geoffrey (2001). The Way We Talk Now: Commentaries on Language and Culture. Houghton Mifflin Reference. p. 32. ISBN 0-618-11603-6. 
  4. ^ Zoss, Joel; Bowman, John (2004). Diamonds in the Rough: The Untold History of Baseball. University of Nebraska Press. p. 18. ISBN 0-8032-9920-6. 
  5. ^ a b "Chewing Tobacco Ads to Be Less Obvious". New York Times. 1991-10-31. Retrieved 2006-07-15. 
  6. ^ "Arizona's Baldwin Takes First Day Lead in Red Man All-American Bass Championship". Business Wire. 1999-06-18. Retrieved 2006-07-01. 
  7. ^ "Twelve Red Man bass divisions hold super events". Boats.com / Operation Bass. 2000-09-05. Archived from the original on August 29, 2005. Retrieved 2006-07-01. 

External links[edit]

  • Shorpy A photograph of outdoor advertising in Camden, NJ, 1939, showing the Red Man brand.