Jefferson Tote

By Jack + Mulligan

The term tote, or “to carry” can be traced back to the 17th century, but wasn't used to describe bags until the 1900s. The tote bag, as it’s known today, has its origins in coal bags from the 1800s. Open top canvas bags with handles on each side, were used to store coal and easily dump it into a fire.

The Tote Bag later became ubiquitous in the U.S. when L.L. Bean launched their version of it in 1944. The style quickly become synonymous with Northeast Summers and could be found on beaches and sailboats along the East Coast. 

For Spring / Summer 2014, Jack + Mulligan is introducing our contemporary take on a classic with the release of the Jefferson Tote. A traditional boat bag silhouette with special attention paid to detail. We started with 18 ounce water-repellent cotton canvas duck cloth. A sturdy fabric that acquires a rich patina the more used and beat up it is. Leather accents on the handles give it a smarter appearance and make it more enjoyable to carry than your standard boat bag. The premium version features a full leather bottom. The Jefferson Tote is slightly oversized making it versatile enough to tote anything- towels, picnic supplies, provisions for a weekend away, or a laptop and gym clothes.

The bag features an interior zipper pocket for organizing and accessing essentials on the go. The pocket snaps off functioning as a separate pouch, allowing you to leave the bag at home and just take a few important items on the go. The Jefferson Tote is perfect for the beach, a weekend away, or as an everyday carry in the city. 


Named after Thomas Jefferson, the third president of the United States. A leader in the enlightenment, Jefferson was a true renaissance man who spoke five languages, and was deeply interested in science, architecture, invention, and philosophy. This tote is as versatile as the man it gets its namesake from.