It all started in 1697 with forging by hand using water driven hammers. Products being fabricated in the beginning included nails and iron bars which were then followed by hand tools such as axes and spades. From its founding until the 1820s the facility was owned by absentee wealthy nobles. Around 1820 the family Ekelund took over the complex. Three generations of Ekelunds ran the Hults Bruk works for over 100 years.