In 1947, Charles E. (Chuck) Williams settled in Sonoma, California, and opened his first shop as a hardware store. In 1953, Williams took his first trip to France. He quickly fell in love with French kitchenware such as copper cookware, and is quoted as saying, “I knew this was something that wasn’t found in America, but thought people would want. ” Shortly after returning home, he formulated a plan to import French cooking and serving equipment into America and converted his store into a cookware shop in 1956. Williams-Sonoma was founded, selling professional and restaurant-quality kitchenware for home use, leading to founder Chuck Williams being recognized as one of the titans of the American food revolution.