Tabasco sauce was first produced in 1868 by Edmund McIlhenny, a Maryland-born former banker who moved to Louisiana around 1840. McIlhenny initially used discarded cologne bottles to distribute his sauce to family and friends. In 1868 when he started to sell to the public he ordered thousands of new cologne bottles from a New Orleans glassworks. On his death in 1890, McIlhenny was succeeded by his eldest son, John Avery McIlhenny, who expanded and modernized the business, but resigned after only a few years in order to join Theodore Roosevelt's 1st US Volunteer Cavalry Regiment, the Rough Riders.
On John's departure, brother Edward Avery McIlhenny, a self-taught naturalist fresh from an Arctic adventure, assumed control of the company and also focused on expansion and modernization, running the business from 1898 until his death in 1949.
Walter S. McIlhenny in turn succeeded his uncle Edward Avery McIlhenny, serving as president of McIlhenny Company from 1949 until his death in 1985. Previously, Walter had served in the U.S. Marines during World War II, fighting at Guadalcanal and two other major battles.
Edward "Ned" McIlhenny Simmons then ran the company as president and CEO for several years, and remained chairman of the board until his death in 2012. Paul McIlhenny, sixth in the line of McIlhenny men to run the business, assumed the presidency in 1998, and occupied the post of chairman until his death in early 2013. In 2012, McIlhenny cousin Tony Simmons assumed the company's presidency and runs the company today.
McIlhenny is one of just a few U.S. companies to have received a royal warrant of appointment that certifies the company as a supplier to Queen Elizabeth II. McIlhenny is one of the 850 companies around the world that have been officially designated as suppliers to the queen by such warrants. The warrant held is "Supplier of Tabasco Sauce HM The Queen – Master of the Household – Granted in 2009". Thanks to Wikipedia for this info.