09/10/2003 - Release at Will

From Hobby to Career…
The Birth (and Growth) of Maple Landmark

1970s Mike Rainville begins making various wooden items in his parents’ basement in Lincoln, VT. Products were given away, sold on consignment (at the family general store) or at flea markets.
1979 First wholesale sales occur. Mike turns 16 and gets his driver’s license so he can get his own lumber. His father encourages him to relocate to another building. (Things were getting dusty in the house!) Products include tic-tac-toe and cribbage boards and wooden cars and trucks.
1984 Mike graduated college and built his larger shop so he could work full-time. He named his company “Maple Landmark Woodcraft.” Maple Landmark Homestead was the name of the family maple sugaring operation. Sales came mainly from local gift shops and a few craft fairs.
1987 Maple Landmark acquired the Troll’s Toy Workshop. This brought letter-based products and new production techniques to Maple Landmark. It also allowed for the hiring of full-time employees (other than Mike’s immediate family, who already helped out a great deal).
1988 The first NameTrains are introduced. Life hasn’t been the same since!
1993 Mike’s wife, Jill, joins the business, along with their first son, Adam.
1994 Colored NameTrains that fit wooden track systems were finally introduced after years of customer demand. (And, boy, did they demand a lot of it!)
1995 Son number two, Andrew, joins the team.
1996 The company built its new plant in Middlebury, VT.
1997 The Vermont Wooden Game Company is purchased, bringing attention back to wooden games, part of Maple Landmark’s early product line.
1999 The plant expands to 15,000 square feet. Also, Vermont Country Blocks is acquired, bringing more letter products to the product line.
2000 Hang-A-Name is added to the product line using letter blocks to create personalized, decorative accessories.
2001 Maple Landmark acquires Montgomery Schoolhouse, another Vermont wooden toy company that had been in business since 1971. Operations are consolidated in Middlebury.
2003 The company introduces a new version of the NameTrain, TimberToots™. In addition, arrangements are made to acquire a line of educational birthday cards.
Current Maple Landmark employs about thirty people and sells about 1000 different items to 3000 locations nationwide, with some export accounts as well.


Contact: Barbara Rainville • 800-421-4223
Images available for download, please contact us.


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