The year is 1797. Levi Dickenson gets credit for crafting America's first corn broom. A farmer from Hadley, Massachusetts, Levi simply grabbed a bundle of sorghum tassels to make a broom for his wife. It worked so well, and the news spread. In the early 1800's the Shakers revolutionized broom making with clever tools, and machines to help speed up the process. For nearly 200 years, corn brooms sold like hotcakes. New broom shops, and great crops of broomcorn popped up everywhere. The average annual harvest of broomcorn was 41,000 tons, with record crop in 1923 which totaled 81,200 tons. In 1965 U.S. broom makers produced 35 Million household corn brooms right here in this country. By 1967, imported plastic brooms found their way onto the store shelves. Corn broom sales sharply declined, as folks began cleaning their floors with plastic bristles. So goes the story of broomcorn.
Lucky for us, corn brooms are making another rally. Natural, renewable materials are in style -- and charming brooms once again embellish our household decor. Folks have an appetite for balance in their lives, and plastics just don't bring home the bacon. It's got to be broom corn. And so, it appears this bashful household tool we call "Corn Broom" has weathered the storm. Here is a testament to American design and dependability... an artistic symbol of tranquil, domestic bliss.