Mr. Knickerbocker is named for its distinct logo, which depicts a man wearing knickers and leaning on a golf club. Though developed before the store itself was open for business, both the name and symbol became synonymous with our company and widely recognized within the Clemson family.
Opened in April 1973 by James and Betty Spearman, Mr. Knickerbocker’s original store consisted of 1300 square feet located in the shadows of Tillman Hall, Clemson’s main administrative building. Starting as a Men’s Clothier, Mr. Knickerbocker underwent a change in 1974 that paralleled the rise of Clemson football to national prominence. During this time, Mr. Knickerbocker filled a much-needed void in the community by selling Clemson clothing and gifts.
In 1977 the original store expanded, doubling its size to over 2500 square feet, and cemented its legacy as the first and only team-specific college sports apparel retailer, coining its now-famous signature phrase:
“A Clemson Tradition Since 1973”
In 1981 the College Avenue store in Clemson expanded for a third time to include 3500 square feet of retail space, its largest footprint to date. Also included in the 1981 expansion was the introduction of in-store embroidery. While Mr. Knickerbocker no longer does in-store embroidery, we do continue to offer hand-sewn customized Jerseys.
A second 1200 square foot College Avenue store, Mr. Knickerbocker Greek Gallery, specializing in Fraternity and Sorority apparel was added in 1987, and a Third Location was established in Greenville, SC, which is now located at the Shoppes at Greenridge on Woodruff Road. A fourth location on Main Street Central, SC became a warehouse outlet store, which is now closed as we have implemented a clearance/sale rack in each store. However, we do now have a 4th location once again. Our Hartwell Village Location just across the lake from Campus is our largest store to date with 4100 square foot.
For over 20 years, Mr. Knickerbocker’s color catalog had been a popular way for Clemson Tiger fans throughout the world to access our products. While the catalog is a loved and time-honored tradition, it has now been expanded to the Internet for quicker, more convenient purchasing and up-to-date listing.