McChrystals - The Original and Genuine Snuff

The Family Business

Established in 1926, the company is owned by the grandson of our founder and the formula for McChrystal’s snuff is a closely guarded family secret.

However, full mechanisation and computerisation ensure that we embrace the latest technologies in the daily running of the business.

We are a successful family business selling a very high quality product. From the initial enquiry through to the completed job, all orders are handled by someone who is very aware that our future is dependant on your satisfaction.

We aim to ensure our customers return time after time.

The Big Snuff Comeback

Sniffing snuff is an ancient art, the original way to take tobacco. For thousands of years, American Indians have known the secret pleasure of tobacco in its oldest form.

Some people think snuff went out with the English fops. But snuff has staying power. Millions of people - men and women in all walks of life across the world - still enjoy a pinch.

Let's be honest. Today, people don't like smokers. So the original way of enjoying tobacco is making a big comeback.

Today, Snuff is there to be sniffed. It's not to be sneezed at.

A Bit Of History

Christopher Columbus noticed the American Indians sniffing a mysterious powder during his second voyage of discovery in 1494. He brought it home to Europe. It fast became the vogue among the Spanish and the French, although it only gained limited acceptance in England until Charles II returned from exile in France a confirmed snuff fan.

Snuff was the province of the aristocrat and the man of fashion, who looked down on the common man and his pipe. It was always particularly popular in court circles. Queen Anne so enjoyed snuff that all her ladies took up the habit. Queen Charlotte, the consort of George III, acquired the name 'snuffy Charlotte' because of her passion for the powder. Her son, George IV, changed his snuff according to the time of day and had a snuff store room in each of his palaces.

The man in the street was first introduced to snuff after the capture of a Spanish convoy in 1702. Among the booty was a large consignment of snuff, which was given to the sailors as part of their payment. They distributed it around the ports and coastal towns, where it quickly became popular. Mills were established in London, Bristol, Sheffield and Kendal, and soon snuff shops were sprouting up everywhere, with over 400 in London alone.

Until the 1900s, the volume of snuff produced far exceeded that of tobacco for smoking or chewing. Everyone took it - from poet Alexander Pope to naturalist Charles Darwin, actress Sarah Siddons to the Duke of Wellington. Lord Nelson took large quantities to sea with him, while Napoleon sniffed up over seven pounds a month. Physicians made great claims for it, prescribing snuff for headaches, insomnia, toothache, coughs and colds and recommending it as a measure against contagion.

Now, with smoking on the decline, this could be the century where snuff retakes the lead.