AT. Cross Company is an American company that manufactures and distributes writing instruments, magazines and accessories.
The company was founded in 1846 in Providence, Rhode Island. Initially, she made gold and silver sheaths for pencils, reflecting the Cross family’s history as jewelers. The company was founded by Richard Cross, who passed it on to his son, Alonzo T. Cross. The company has developed many new innovative writing instruments, including the precursors of modern mechanical pencils and the first stylistic pens. In the 1960s, the company moved its headquarters to a large facility (approximately 155,000 square feet) in Lincoln, Rhode Island. After being traded on the NASDAQ for five years (under the ticker symbol ATX), the company was sold in 2013 to Clarion Capital Partners, LLC, but has retained its head office in Lincoln, Rhode Island. The Sheaffer pen company was acquired by AT Cross in 2014. In May 2016, with its head office in Lincoln becoming too big, the company accepted a set of tax credits and incentives in exchange for the relocation of its headquarters Providence, Rhode Island. The new head office, approximately 4200 square feet in size, is located at The Foundry, the former Brown and Sharpe Manufacturing Company complex located at 299 Promenade Street in Providence. Most employees moved to the new location in October 2016. On November 16, 2017, Transom Capital Group, LLC announced that it had purchased the assets of A. T. Cross Company.
Cross has been an official supplier of pens to the White House since at least the 1970s. The pens used to sign the laws are often distributed as souvenirs to those attending the signing of the bills. While an official White House program was launched under Bill Clinton’s presidency, the tradition goes back at least to Gerald Ford’s administration. All Ronald Reagan’s presidents at Donald Trump have signed a law using crossed pens; we do not know if the first presidents did it. Obama, George W. Bush and Clinton favored the model of Cross Townsend; Later, Obama opted for the Century II model in black lacquer, with black tip refill. The Trump administration placed an initial order of 150 Cross Century II pens in January 2017. Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo signs state laws using Cross pens.
Cross is well known for his lines of writing instruments, starting with mechanical pencils, and he produced the first stylographs (a technological precursor to the modern ballpoint pen) in 1879. The current product line includes feather pens , ballpoint pens and mechanical pencils. The first Cross pens were probably made in 1930, but not until the 1980s. Cross-writing instruments are generally sold in the mid-range of the market, rather than in extreme luxury. However, they became a must-have accessory for the emerging professional during the 1970s and 1980s. Most Cross writing instruments are now made in China, although some of the work for custom pens for presidents and the politicians are in New England. The company also manufactures a range of wristwatches, cufflinks, office accessories and leather goods such as pen cases, wallets and other items often intended for the gift market. In late 1997, Cross and IBM teamed up to introduce a digital writing block called CrossPad, which was discontinued in 2004.