150 Years Of US Cigar Making
FX Smith's Sons Cigars To Celebrate Rich History
March 2, 2012. In the shadow of the Civil War's bloodiest battle, Gettysburg, Francis Xavier Smith founded the FX Smith's Sons Cigars company in McSherrystown, Pennsylvannia.
150 years later, the company is run by fifth generation owner, Craig Smith. FX Smith's will celebrate 150 years of continuous operation in 20113 and plans are being made for a special occasion.
Smith's business no doubt benefited from the overall demand created by the war. Smoking cigars had become de rigueur among soldiers and commanders on both sides of the conflict and, lacking access to Virginia tobacco, northerners began using Connecticut leaves as wrappers and imported tobacco in filler blends. After FX Smith moved his enterprise to McSherrystown in 1877, much of the tobacco used in production was grown right in the area.
FX Smith's Sons, now under the leadership of President Craig Smith - is the only cigar factory left of all those that once operated in McSherrystown. Tangible evidence of the Civil War's local impact also remains in the form of the area's summer tourist trade, including a realistic reenactment of the Gettysburg battle. "When all those reenactors come to Gettysburg, they buy their cigars here," Smith states proudly.