Updated: Aug 5, 2022
Warren County has laid claim to fame by being the place where the Gateway Arch was built and is also well known as being home to the Kinzua Dam and the Allegheny National Forest. Warren County also has another claim to fame that is not widely known. Warren County is also home to the Larimer & Norton Bat Factory where Louisville Slugger baseball bats are made! Many of the Louisville Slugger baseball bats that you see used in Major League Baseball games as well as Little League games were made right here in Russell PA! Did you know that the folks at Larimer and Norton will let you stop in for a free tour of the mill to watch how the Louisville Sluggers are made? I had the pleasure of going on a tour this past week. Pete and the staff at Larimer and Norton were kind enough to show me the process from rough cut wood to the drying process. I learned that Hard Maple is used for the Pro-bats that are used in Major League Baseball. There are 5 kilns for the drying process. One of their milling machines that are used is one of only 4 of it's kind in the whole world! 12,000 baseball bats will fit in one kiln! Not only do Larimer & Norton make Louisville Sluggers, but they also collect Reishi mushrooms and send them to China for medicinal purposes! Larimer and Norton is certainly a hidden treasure here in Warren County!! They have been in Akeley since 1950. What a treat it was to see how Louisville Sluggers are made! Thank you to Pete for showing me around, to my brother-in-law Jamie for putting me in contact with Larimer and Norton,
and to all of the friendly staff at Larimer and Norton for being so kind to show me how all of the machines worked! I also got to take home a few souvenirs! I can imagine all of the Major League homeruns that the many Louisville Sluggers that I saw on my visit will hit someday!