F. Berg Hat Factory
The Valley neighborhood of Orange, formerly known as the hat making capital at the beginning of the 20th century, was home to 34 hat-making factories clustered in one small part of this town, including the F. Berg Hat Manufacturing Company complex of three huge buildings. The F. Berg had thousands of hatters working 24/7 to produce over 1 million hats per year.
“Berg went bankrupt in the early 1900’s, and a pajama-making factory took over the plant. Eventually, the Berg buildings joined dozens of other former hat plants, a Colgate factory, tool-and-dye shops and other industrial properties on the vacancy rolls.” “In the Region/New Jersey; Hat Factory is a Focus of Redevelopment in Orange“, The New York Times.
HANDS purchased this 70,000 SF property in December 2010. The Berg Hat Factory complex is an anchor for the 8 block redevelopment effort in the Valley neighborhood of Orange and West Orange. The successful revitalization of the Valley is a key factor in the city-wide renaissance of Orange. This is one of a dozen projects in planning, under construction, or completed by HANDS as part of the newly designated Valley Arts District.