Founded in Knoxville, Tennessee, Alpha Industries has become one of the world’s leading manufacturers for military issue flight jackets and Parka jackets. They have been making their alpha jackets for more than half a century, and just like a lot of pieces that have been designed for the military, it has become an iconic item for men as well as women.
Alpha’s MA-1 flight jacket has been a recognisable and popular figure, replicated by others without the same desired effect of style and heritage. In the modern day Alpha has left it’s military duties in the past and is now solely focused on apparel for all, creating replicas of their once exclusive jackets.
History of Alpha Industries
Breaking away from his business partner and their business Dobbs Industries, Samuel Gelber established Alpha Industries in October 1959. Picking up where Dobbs Industries left off, Alpha was awarded their first Department of Defence contract, which was to manufacture N-3B parkas and Navy shipboard shirts.
While the Alpha parka coincided with the company’s launch, the next three jackets were crucial to their future successes. In 1963, Alpha was awarded a contract to create outwear styles, which included the MA-1 flight jacket and the N-2B parka. At the time they were considered to be just a formality but they have now become a modern day classic. Two years later the Army tasked Alpha Industries to develop their M-65 field coat. This would be a contract Alpha would secure every year for the subsequent 25 years.
Over the last two decades, Alpha has extended their reach from the Tennessee based factory to around the world. Partnerships in Japan and Germany now make Alpha an internationally recognised brand.
Products from Alpha Industries
While the originals would have been a colour to blend with army or naval attire, the modern day replicas are anything but boring. The shapes of the MA-1 bombers may be similar to the original but the modern twist of colour appeals to a new generation.
It’s not just about being a cult fashion item for this era, Alpha have ensured that the quality that was necessary then is still evident now. The quality of the product is demonstrated by the jacket’s warmth, comfort and durability – everything a military jacket should be.