Chris Corry is the owner and CEO of Self Reliance Essentials Inc.
His life began in San Francisco, where he was born from his mother Merle (under sedation, and the first of her family to graduate from college), in the Presidio hospital in March of 1946, while his father Al Corry waited in another room (that’s how they did it back then). Shortly after his birth, his parents moved back to Merle’s home town of Greensboro, North Carolina to live with her parents at their farm and lumberyard on Elwell Avenue. On this county lane, Chris spent a lot of time with his grandfather “Pa-Pa” John Henry Swaim, who taught him how to slaughter pigs, hunt squirrels, and generally have a good time living the American dream.
Chris’ father, “Big Al”, a Yankee from Buffalo, New York had a difficult time adjusting to southern life, and struggled to fill a position in “Pa-Pa”’s construction company. He found himself adrift in unfamiliar waters when “Pa-Pa” died of pancreatic cancer in 1958. At that point, Chris had a little sister “Ginger” 3 years junior, and brother “Teddy” 9 years junior, with little Britt coming much later than the other children in 1964. The Corry children didn’t get to spend quite as much time with their father as they might have liked, but in that time of American life, children were allowed to roam, and learn at their own pace, in the freedom and safety that was the suburban south of the 50s and 60s.
Needless to say, Chris grew up as a big brother, builder of tree houses, self taught guitarist and banjo player, and generally wild and crazy redneck.
His undergraduate and masters degrees were both in biology, and yet after only a few years of teaching (during which he met his wife Fenna), he took over the old family construction/handyman business when his eldest son Schuyler was born in 1978.
Chris is a pretty versatile man, whose experience and wisdom have a tremendous range. His knowledge of tools and their uses has been imperative to the creation of Self Reliance Essentials Inc. and to the education of his son Jared, who is writing this biography so you folks in internet land can better understand what we’re all about around here.
The pictures are from the old family albums. Perhaps they’ll inspire you to start seizing the day, and realize just how much fun there is out there to be had, or maybe it’ll make you mad that America has become a country populated by consumers who don’t really do any of the things we used to.