• 1895

    The Village Blacksmith
  • 1906

    The Great Trip
  • 1914

    The Family's Return
  • 1922

    The Machine that Changed Everything
  • 1930

    From Inventor to Manufacturer
  • 1935

    A Family Enterprise
  • 1940

    Teamwork
  • 1944

    A Garant & Sons, Ltd.
  • 1945

    Change of Direction
  • 1954

    The Garant Shovel is Born
  • 1955

    Rapid Growth
  • 1958

    From Father to Son
  • 1959

    $1 Million in Sales
  • 1965

    Garant, Inc.
  • 1968

    Canadian Expansion
  • 1980

    Fierce Competition
  • 1984

    The Plastic Era
  • 1986

    The Fourth Generation
  • 1991

    Growth & Global Ties
  • 1995

    100 Years of Growth
  • 1996

    The Garant Legacy Passes Forward
  • 1999

    Distribution Centre Construction
  • 2010

    Griffon Corporation
  • 2015

    Celebrating 120 Years of Moving Forward

1895

The Village Blacksmith

Télesphore Garant builds his forge in 1895 to be close to his customers, mainly farmers. He restores carriages, carriage wheels, plow pedestals and other farm instruments, hooks, picks, axes and much more.

1906

The Great Trip

Despite long hours in the forge, Télesphore is struggling to sustain his family in Saint-François. Like many families in Québec at the turn of the century, he decides to look for more prosperous work in the United States. On April 16, 1906, he moves with his wife Eloise and their eight children to Nashua, New Hampshire.

1914

The Family's Return

At the start of World War I, Télesphore Garant returns to his forge in Saint-François. Alphonse, his son, soon follows with his new wife Albertine. Alphonse takes a job at a munitions plant in Montmagny, where he becomes an excellent machinist. When the munitions plant closes at the end of the war, Alphonse returns to his father’s forge with a proposal:

Father, if you are interested, we could start something here. ~ Alphonse Garant

1922

The Machine that Changed Everything

After much trial and error, Alphonse builds a cast iron machine called a copying lathe that reproduces carriage wheels in wood. Their wheels become a best-selling product in the villages across the area. The Garants also develop a wood drying regimen that makes their products much stronger. They transport goods and supplies in a cart hauled by their large family dog, Dandy.

1930

From Inventor to Manufacturer

Working tirelessly to perfect his lathe, Alphonse is able to turn out a wide array of handles for tools such as shovels, axes and pitchforks. Forestry companies are approaching Garant for their high quality handles and Garant’s factory is operating at full capacity.

1935

A Family Enterprise

Alphonse’s family has grown to ten children, and four of his boys work in the factory daily: Oscar, Marcel, Daniel and Irenee. Business is good, so the family hires a few boys from the village to boost production. They are housed, fed and paid a weekly wage of 25 cents.

My mother gave me 25 cents the first week. The second week she asked me if I had any money left. I told her I still had 10 cents, so she gave me 15 cents. ~ Daniel Garant

1940

Teamwork

Oscar Garant sells the company’s products door-to-door in villages throughout the area, hauling them in a jalopy hitched to a small trailer. He later widens his sales territory by selling to local retailers.

He would come back to the shop when he had a hundred dollars in his pockets. That was enough to pay everybody. When he came in, he would say, “Produce, Daniel, produce all you can. Don’t worry, it’s already sold.” Then he was back on the road. ~ Daniel Garant

1944

A Garant & Sons, Ltd.

The Garants decide to form a company, and on January 4, 1944, A. Garant & Sons Co., Ltd is founded.

1945

Change of Direction

At the end of WWII, smaller metal wheels with metal tires begin to replace wooden carriage wheels. The Garants form A. Garant and Sons, Ltd. and shift all of their production into tool handles. The factory has 20 employees working on three lathes built by Alphonse, each turning out one handle per minute. They also manufacture other wood and iron products, including horse collars, wheelbarrows, wagons, stretchers, sleds and hockey sticks.

1954

The Garant Shovel is Born

The Garants manufacture their first complete tool, the steel square point snow shovel, using a steel press purchased from the munitions plant in Montmagny and a custom mold. Shortly after, they add the round point steel shovel and the aluminum square shovel. The factory can produce 45 to 50 shovels per hour, or 450 to 500 shovels per day.

1955

Rapid Growth

Garant expands its production facilities and its tool lines dramatically to include pitchforks, rakes, hoes, shovels and much more.

We had an edge over our competitors in that we used dried wood for our products. Dried wood is the guarantee of a quality tool, since it doesn’t shrink or split. ~ Jean-Marie Garant

1958

From Father to Son

By 1958, Garant is offering “the most complete line of tool handles and assembled tools ever offered by a Canadian manufacturer.” With the company poised on the brink of breaking $1 million in sales, Alphonse Garant passes away. Oscar Garant is named president of the company to succeed his father.

1959

$1 Million in Sales

The company breaks the $1 million mark, and immediately sets its sights on breaking the $2 million mark.

1965

Garant, Inc.

On December 31, 1965, A. Garant and Sons Co. Ltd. becomes Garant, Inc.

1968

Canadian Expansion

In 1968, Garant opens a warehouse in Montreal to provide metropolitan wholesalers and retailers with Garant products. The same year, the company purchases a wood mill in Woodstock, New Brunswick and moves the offices from the old family home into a new building.

Two years later, Garant proudly displays its name outside of Quebec at its new warehouse in Toronto.

1980

Fierce Competition

By the early 1980s, ownership of the company is divided among 38 members of the Garant family, with a majority of the shares held by the families of Oscar, Marcel, Daniel, Irenee and Jean-Marie. Eighteen family members work for the company full-time. The company faces increasing competition from lower-priced competitors in the U.S. and China.

1984

The Plastic Era

Garant begins testing plastic products and adding them to its offerings. Initially, the company incorporates plastic components made by local manufacturers via hot pressing and injection molding. Convinced of their performance, Garant expands its plastic offerings.

1986

The Fourth Generation

On January 3, 1986, Garant is sold to three cousins of the fourth generation of pioneers: Louis-Marie Garant, Guy Garant and Alain Garant.

1991

Growth & Global Ties

In January 1991, Garant Inc. is sold to Hanson, PLC, a multinational building materials company that owns AMES, a major U.S. manufacturer of lawn and garden tools with product lines similar to Garant’s. AMES invests more than $3.5 million in the modernization of the factory and the Woodstock mill. Shortly after, Garant invests in plastic injection molding presses and brings plastic production in-house.

1995

100 Years of Growth

In 1995, Garant celebrates its 100th anniversary. In an introduction to a centennial corporate history, President Louis Marie Garant writes:

Throughout [Garant’s history], you will recognize the resourcefulness and the courage of these builders of the future who were not afraid of taking calculated risks and who put faith in their experience, their tenacity and the quality of their work and their products. ~ Louis Marie Garant

1996

The Garant Legacy Passes Forward

Louis-Marie Garant announces his departure from the company. He passes on to Garant a new vision of the company and solid business relations with customers, retailers and providers.

1999

Distribution Centre Construction

Garant invests in the construction of a state of the art distribution center at its head office in St-François-de-la-rivière-du-sud. In 2015, the area covers 15 000 square feet and a total of 8 million $ has been dedicated to this project.

2010

Griffon Corporation

In 2010, Garant and AMES are purchased by Griffon Corporation, an investment and management company with a diversified portfolio of wholly owned subsidiaries. Today, Garant and AMES remain a significant part of Griffon’s Home and Building Products division, which has expanded to encompass Southern Patio, Northcote, Cyclone and Consolidated Foam. These sister brands provide us with significant opportunities to expand our markets, particularly in planters and containers.

2015

Celebrating 120 Years of Moving Forward

In 2015, Garant celebrates our 120th anniversary as the leading Canadian manufacturer of tools for tough outdoor tasks. We’re proud to continue the Garant family’s legacy in our quest to provide the highest quality products and services to our customers.

We also introduced a new line of snow brushes with scratch-free foam heads that remove snow without damaging cars. The brushes are a major innovation that promise to open up new opportunities for us in the snow removal tool market.