In a world where businesses come and go, Dilworth Mattress Factory stands as a testament to resilience and tradition. What began as a humble mattress repair shop in 1931, it has weathered the storms of depressions, world wars, recessions, and even a global pandemic. Today, Scott and Dori Hirsch, the fourth generation of the family, proudly assume the reins as the new owners of this iconic Charlotte institution.
Located in the heart of South End since its inception, Dilworth Mattress Factory has been manufacturing mattresses right here in Charlotte for over nine decades. Across generations, families have relied on Dilworth mattresses for a good night’s sleep, and now, Scott and Dori Hirsch step up to continue this legacy, taking over from Scott’s uncle, Alan, and Debbie Hirsch, who faithfully ran the factory for the past 50 years.
For Scott Hirsch, Dilworth Mattress Factory has been an integral part of his life. Having worked in the mattress factory during the summer of 1986, he has known nothing but the world of Dilworth Mattress. Despite owning other businesses in Charlotte, Scott always harbored a dream of owning a small manufacturing facility. When Alan approached him about retiring to Florida, Scott seized the opportunity to preserve and build upon the family business.
“We have a 90-year reputation of building quality mattresses at a fair price,” says Scott Hirsch, with a hint of pride in his voice. “Believe it or not, not much has changed in the mattress world over 90 years. While there are some new materials today like memory foam, we strive to access highest quality materials available. The essence of mattress craftsmanship remains unchanged. In fact, we recently had a customer come in who had purchased a mattress from us in 1997. There was nothing wrong with his current mattress; he simply needed to downsize. That mattress was 26 years old.”
Despite the proliferation of new mattress stores on every corner, Scott Hirsch remains unfazed. He knows that none of them can rival the reliability and craftsmanship that Dilworth Mattress has consistently offered to the Charlotte community since its establishment in 1931.
The history of Dilworth Mattress Factory is one deeply rooted in the Charlotte fabric. It all began with Thomas Philbeck, a furniture salesman who acquired an existing mattress company in what is now known as the Southend neighborhood during the height of the Great Depression. In 1931, he founded Dilworth Mattress with a vision to provide an alternative to buying a new mattress.
Philbeck’s innovative approach involved refurbishing old mattresses. He would pick up a customer’s mattress in the morning, sterilize it, rework the cotton, add new springs, and cover it, effectively breathing new life into the old mattress. By the afternoon, the revitalized mattress would be delivered back to the customer, practically good as new.
After World War II, Philbeck’s son-in-law, Edward Hirsch, joined the operation and recognized the demand for renovated mattresses in hospitals and hotels across Charlotte. He established Comfort Dilworth Mattress Factory as a division to cater to this niche. In 1950, Philbeck constructed a new facility at 242 West Tremont, just a stone’s throw from the original building.
Following Philbeck’s retirement, Edward Hirsch took over the entire operation. The mid-sixties saw the formal incorporation of the business as Dilworth Mattress Co. Inc. Tragedy struck in 1972 when Edward Hirsch passed away, leaving his wife Elizabeth to take the reins alongside their son Alan.
Under Elizabeth and Alan’s leadership, the business expanded to include the production of high-quality new mattresses. After an impressive 51 years at the helm, Alan recently bid farewell to Dilworth Mattress, leaving behind a remarkable legacy. As Scott and Dori Hirsch assume their role as the new owners, they vow to uphold the tradition of excellence that has defined Dilworth Mattress Factory for nearly a century. With a focus on quality, craftsmanship, and customer satisfaction, the Hirsch’s are poised to write the next chapter of this storied Charlotte institution.
In an ever-changing world, Dilworth Mattress Factory remains a steadfast presence, where generations of families have experienced the comfort and durability of mattresses built to stand the test of time. As Charlotte’s oldest mattress company, Dilworth Mattress Factory continues to defy trends, proving that sometimes, the best path forward is to hold on to what has made you great since the beginning.