Glossary for the Mitchell
- G -
"G" Suffix - "G"
as a suffix on a "400"-model implies Gold. The letter "G" was used
on two models - 400 and 408, issued by Bass Pro Shops and manufactured by
Galion - The Galion
series of reels produced by Mitchell were very similar to the Kingfisher
series produced for Garcia around the same time period. One of the major
differences was that the larger Galions incorporated a manual pickup system
whereas the Kingfisher models only utilised a full bail mechanism.
Body - some Galion models were released with the name Mitchell. These models
are the 282, 283 288, 298, 382 and 398.
Charles Garcia Corporation® (1947-1979)
- Founded in 1919 as Charles Garcia & Company, it was originally located
on Park Place then later moved to Park Avenue in New York City. They were
the sole distributors of Mitchell products in the United States from 1947
through 1978. The company’s name changed to The Garcia Corporation and later
moved to Teaneck New Jersey in 1969 where it remained until 1978. In Canada,
Garcia Outdoor Sports Ltd. of Mississauga, Ontario, handled the Mitchell
distribution. In 1946 Jules Gumprich was a partner with Charles Garcia in
the import/export business under the company name Impecco located in France.
He sent his brother living in NY City, Otto Gumprich, and a sample of a new
spinning reel recently introduced in Paris by Mitchell. Otto was in charge
of the Charles Garcia & Co. in the United States who at that time distributed
silkworm gut used for surgical sutures. Thomas T. Lenk, an employee under
Otto, noticed this reel and asked for the opportunity to market it in the
NY area. Tom ordered just a dozen reels from Jules and sold them exclusively
to the Mills Tackle shop in NY City. Brisk sales at Mills Tackle prompted
Tom to order additional reels in high volume. With substantially increased
sales, he was able to expand his marketing to trade shows in the NY metropolitan
area. By 1949, the importation of these reels grew to be so successful the
primary direction of the Charles Garcia & Co was to import and distribute
Mitchell products exclusively. They accomplished this by forming the U.S.
Company Impecco Ltd of Park Avenue, New York City, which later relocated to
Teaneck, New Jersey in 1969. Impecco Ltd was appointed exclusive agent and
handled the importing process while Garcia handled the sales, marketing, advertising,
distribution and customer service of the products. In time, Otto Gumprich
retired and Tom Lenk rose within the company to the position of President
and CEO. The Garcia Corporation in the United States and Canada was a family
managed business under the leadership of four related families - namely,
The Lenks, The DeSimones, The Mesiscas and The Pisapios. The Garcia Corporation
became a publicly owned company in 1970. In 1956, the Swedish Abu Ambassadeur
and Abu-Matic line of products were introduced under the Garcia name. As
the company grew, with quality brands such as Conolon, Kingfisher and Royal
Bonnyl, many fledgling American and European products were introduced and
marketed through the Impecco/Garcia family organisation. In 1974 Garcia was
a dominant force in the fishing tackle market and purchased Mitchell of France.
Up until 1978, Impecco Ltd was the exclusive agent of Mitchell and Abu fishing
reels for The Garcia Corporation importing fishing tackle, firearms, ski,
camping and tennis equipment from Europe for North American distribution.
Many of the European companies are now world recognised sporting goods name
brands of today. The Garcia Corporation dominated and revolutionised fishing
tackle worldwide and was a successful operation with annual revenues over
$100 million. They basically gave North Americans the opportunity to experience
new and innovative fishing and outdoor products for 30 years. By 1978, due
to financial concerns, The Garcia Corporation would restructure the distribution
of Mitchell and Abu. By 1980 these two brands would become independent and
go their separate ways. Mitchell of France appointed various importers until
1984, and from 1978 to 1984, Garcia Outdoor Sports Ltd continued to sell
reels independently throughout Canada. In 1984 Mitchell Sports of France
took over distribution of all Mitchell reels world-wide thereby closing the
doors to the Garcia-Mitchell relationship. In 1991 Johnson Worldwide Associates
purchased Mitchell Sports of France. In 1980 Abu Sweden became the owner
of the Garcia name and logo, changed their name to Abu-Garcia Inc. and relocated
the US operation to Fairfield, New Jersey.
Garcia Reels - Shortly after the "divorce" in 1980
with Mitchell, Garcia decided to release a series of open face spinning reels
very much alike the existing Mitchell models. One important difference: these
reels were ambidextruous! All were made in Japan and never sold in Europe.
The Garcia "3000" and "3800" were look-alikes of the "300C" and "308" Mitchell
models. The Mitchell skirted spool-models were copied too: the "900" became
a "Garcia 9000", the "906" a "Garcia 9600", the "908" a "Garcia 9800" and
the "Garcia 9200" was designed to compete with the "498" model of Mitchell.
Gold - The only "De Luxe" reel Mitchell made with this inscription,
was the Quartz
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