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January 17, 2017

More than 200 years ago, William Frances Truefitt began creating first rate fragrances for discerning British customers — among them, the well-to-do young men of Oxford and Cambridge universities. 


As it happens, these early decades of the 19th Century also marked the emergence of boating clubs for competitive crew racing — first at Eton and other British public schools, and later at Oxford and Cambridge. 

The inter-school rivalry between these two schools — which for many years were the only universities in England — goes long before W.F. Truefitt’s time. Cambridge University’s roots go back to 1209, when disgruntled scholars split off from Oxford and began a new academic community. 

Given the bad blood that was present from the start, these universities cultivated a sometimes fierce, inter-school rivalry — a tradition that still continues, both in academics and in sport. And nowhere is this competition more publicly on display than in inter-collegiate rowing.


Today, enthusiastic English fans still line London’s Thames River for the annual Oxford v. Cambridge crew races — a British classic by any standards. This British embrace of rowing races soon spawned similar competions (and rivalries) across the pond. Both Americans and Canadians enthusiastically embraced amateur rowing — and it was 1843 when the first collegiate rowing club was established in America, at Yale University.  Today, American crew racing competition comes to a head each fall at Harvard University, where the Head-of-the- Charles (HOTC) Regatta has been drawing diehard crowds for fifty years.

In Canada, the premier rowing event is the Royal Canadian Henley Regatta, whose history goes back to 1880. Clearly, Britain’s rowing export now is an organic part of North American amateur sport — particularly amongst the Ivy League institutions.


Whether you’re attending a regatta or meeting fellow alums on campus for an inter- collegiate game or class reunion — Truefitt & Hill is happy to enhance the experience, as they have been for over a century. These are a few of our campus approved picks.


When you’re attending outdoor sporting events, you can bring good cheer — in style. The classic Truefitt & Hill Hunter Flasks — stainless steel and covered in gorgeous leather, are a perfect compliment to weekend adventures.

Somehow, regattas are no strangers to wet weather. If you’ll be attending on a rainy day, the Truefitt & Hill umbrella is a classic, minimalist way to stay dry.


Wherever the day might take you on campus, Truefitt & Hill is happy to lend the same classic quality and heritage aesthetic as it has to students across the Ivy League since it first made it's way to North America. A true British export, through and through.