Henry David Lee founded Lee Mercantile Company. In 1889, they opened the garment factory in Salina, Kansas, producing dungarees and jackets. In 1913, the Union-All work jumpsuits were created, followed by the first-ever “Overall” in 1920 – laying the foundation for Lee’s early growth. Furthermore, in 1920, the Buddy Lee doll was launched for promotional use, but quickly became a famous play doll and are today a symbol representing a great vintage, long tradition and American heritage of denim jeans together with Levi Strauss and Wrangler.
Lee Jeans is a leading international retailer and manufacturer of denim wear and casual wear; they are a part of VF Corporation, the largest publicly held apparel company in the world. It is on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol VFC. The following brands are owned and operated by the VF company; Lee, Wrangler, Riders, Rustler, The North Face, Vans, Reef, Napapijri, Kipling, Nautica, John Varvatos, JanSport, Eastpak, Eagle Creek, Lee Sport and Red Kap.