Peabody Singing Tower

 NORTH MANCHESTER HISTORICAL SOCIETY
 North Manchester, Indiana

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N.M. Foundry





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Source: North Manchester Journal, October 7, 1909

CLOSING FOUNDRY CONTRACT.

Mr. Garwood Here With Force of Men to Go to Work at Once.
A.R. Garwood and two or three of his associates from Wellsburg, West Virginia, are here this week, and the contracts were being closed Wednesday by which the Industrial association and the citizens of North Manchester will contribute two thousand dollars toward assisting to start a foundry. The old Dunbar building has been bought for this purpose, and a force of men will be put to work in a few days making the needed changes, so that it is expected the foundry will be ready to run by the first of January. Not quite all of the two thousand dollars necessary for the fund has been subscribed, and the Industrial association has to draw on its treasury to supply the balance.

Monday evening there was a meeting with Mr. Garwood that resulted in considerable enthusiasm, and at which the soliciting committees reported. Still farther canvass was made Tuesday with good results. A foundry is an enterprise for which there is great demand here, as has been mentioned before in the Journal and it is to be hoped that the conference that was being held Wednesday when the Journal went to press will result in an agreement that will quickly produce the results, and about which there will need to be no delay.


Source: Aurora (1927) Ad:

North Manchester Foundry Co. Inc.

The foundry is one of the leading industrial enterprises of the city. It is chiefly occupied in making school desk and opera chair castings for the Peabody School Furniture Company. Practical and economical heating and laundry stoves are also products of the foundry.

Manchester College has been more closely connected with the foundry than perhaps any other business firm in North Manchester. Mr. John Stauffer, for many years the president of the corporation, was at the time of his death one of the trustees of the college; Robert Stauffer, our basketball coach is Secretary-Treasurer; and Prof. Roy Dilling, a member of our Music faculty is Vice President. They have been friends and supporters to whom we are greatly indebted.


Source: Ravelings (1949) Ad:

North Manchester Foundry
Makers of HEATING AND LAUNDRY STOVES
Also Grey Iron Castings
Phone 153


Source: News-Journal, August 16, 1973, Centennial Section

Foundry Incorporated 1911


The North Manchester Foundry Company was incorporated July 3, 1911. Common stock was issued to J.C.F. Martin, president; W.J. Ranger, vice-president and John Stauffer, secretary-treasurer.

John Stauffer purchased the stock of W.J. Ranger in 1913 and the stock of J.C.F. Martin in 1919. Stauffer had come to North Manchester earlier after a foundry he had operated in Dayton, Ohio burned out.

The major part of the common stock remained in the Stauffer family until January 1947, when all of the outstanding common stock was purchased by the M.H. Detrick Company with main offices in Chicago. After this transaction the foundry became a division of the M.H. Detrick Company.

John Stauffer served as general manager from 1911 until his death in April of 1927. His son, R.M. Stauffer succeeded him as general manager and operated the foundry until 1947 at which time he was responsible for the sale of the foundry to the M.H. Detrick Company.

Due to the successful operation of the foundry from 1927 to 1947 the M.H. Detrick Company appointed R. M. Stauffer a vice president and retained his services as general manager until his retirement in 1968. Upon retirement R.M. Stauffer was replaced by Rolf Westman who is currently operating the foundry as vice president and general manager.

The foundry was originally organized to manufacture castings for the Peabody Seating Company. for twenty years this casting production represented about 90 percent or more of the total production. In the early 1930s the foundry was forced to branch out into other lines of castings due mainly to the fact that steel moveable school desks began to replace the cast iron stationary desks.

Among other types of production, the foundry began the manufacture of coal and wood  burning heating and laundry stoves. The company produced 20 to 25 thousand stoves a year in the late 1930s and early 1940s. The decline of coal for home heating soon reduced the need for stove production.

In 1935 the foundry began making castings for the Ford Meter Box Company in Wabash. This business has been continued since that time and the Ford Meter Box Company is still considered among the larger customers for castings from the foundry.

During World War II the foundry produced farm machinery castings for the J.I. Case Company of Rockford, Ill. These castings carried a high priority rating, therefore, the foundry experienced no difficulty in obtaining raw materials for their war time production.

Soon after World War II the M.H. Detrick Company bought the foundry. At that time Detrick operated two other foundries, one at Newark, N.J. and the other at Peoria, Ill.

The M.H. Detrick Company closed the Newark foundry operation in 1958 and moved the production pattern equipment to the North Manchester plant. Expansion of the North Manchester facility was planned and construction started in November 1959 with a rebuilding and addition to the plant.

In 1964 the Peoria, Ill., foundry was closed and more equipment moved to North Manchester. At the present time the North Manchester Foundry is the only M.H. Detrick foundry in operation.

Since construction program started in November 1959, it has been a continual expansion and improvement with future plans still being made. In 1965 a pallet line molding operation was installed with conveying equipment and lift trucks for a much improved materials handling operation.

In 1968 an air conditioned lunch room was provided for employee convenience and comfort. In 1970 a first aid room was installed along with more production improvements.

With air pollution control laws being enacted plans were formulated and two new electric induction furnaces were installed and began operation in October of 1971. The electric furnaces replaced the cupola melting operation that had been used in the foundry for 60 years. The electric melting operation has been successful enough to warrant a decision by the M.H. Detrick Company to add a third electric furnace for additional expansion to the production facility. Plans call for the third furnace to be in operation by the end of 1973.
The 200 employees of the North Manchester Foundry participate in the following employee benefits:
1. Savings and Profit Sharing.
2. Group hospitalization and life insurance.
3. Vacation pay.
4. 10 paid holidays.
5. Other company sponsored activities including participating and spectator sports.
6. Profit sharing cash bonus.


VINTAGE PHOTOS OF NORTH MANCHESTER FOUNDRY & WORKERS-


N. Manchester Foundry





Source: NMHS Newsletter Nov 2002

North Manchester Foundry

The North Manchester Foundry Company was incorporated July 3, 1911. Common stock was issued to J. C. F. Martin, president W. J. Ranger, vice-president and John Stauffer, secretary-treasurer. John Stauffer purchased the stock of W. J. Ranger in 1913 and the stock of J.C.F Martin in 1919. Mr. Stauffer had come to North Manchester

 
 
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earlier after a foundry he had operated in Dayton, Ohio burned out. The major part of the common stock remained in the Stauffer family until January 1947 when all of the outstanding common stock was purchased by the M. H. Detrick Company with main offices in Chicago. After this transaction the foundry became a division of the M. H. Detrick Company.

John Stauffer served as general manager from 1911 until his death in April, 1927. His son Robert M. Stauffer succeeded him as general manager, and became a vice-president of the Detrick Company and continued to manage the North Manchester plant. The foundry is one industry that has never called upon the town for financial assistance.

The foundry was originally organized to make castings for the Peabody Seating Company and for approximately twenty years this production was 90 per cent or more of the total castings produced. In the early 1930's the foundry was forced to branch out into other lines of castings due mainly to the fact that steel movable school desks began to replace the cast iron stationary desks. Among other types of production, the foundry began the manufacture of coal burning heating and laundry stoves, producing 20 to 25 thousand stoves a year in the late 1930's and early 1940's. Then the use of coal began to decline and stove production was phased out. In 1935 the foundry began making castings for the Ford Meter Box Company at Wabash.

During World War II the foundry produced farm machinery castings for the J. I. Case Company of Rockford, Illinois. As their castings carried a high priority rating, the foundry experienced no trouble in getting raw materials. Soon after the war when the M. H. Detrick Company purchased the plant the work for the company took an increasing percentage of the total capacity. This production was engineered refractory heat enclosures which are applied to open hearth

 
   
   

 

Page Two
 

furnaces, metallurgical and steel processing furnaces, refuse incinerators, clinker coolers for the cement industry, etc. M. H. Detrick Company operated foundries at North Manchester and Peoria, Illinois to produce mechanite metal for heat resisting castings which support the special fire brick shapes.

Foundry operations were not highly mechanized due to the great variety of patterns involved in their production. The new building improved production somewhat going from melting 22 to 24 tons of iron daily to a capacity of 30 to 36 tons daily.

In 1959 the plant began a rather unique plan of construction of a new building. The entirely new structure was built over the old structure without interrupting operations within the old structure. Once the outer structure was complete, the removal of the old structure began and that was completed by 1961. In the summer of 1961, on the fiftieth anniversary of incorporation the management considered having a day for open house but decided it was impractical. They did invite any who were interested in watching the iron being poured to call and arrange to watch any afternoon from Monday to Friday. Visitors on any day were to be limited. The new building had a 50 per cent greater capacity than the old.

Smoke pouring from the chimney of the new plant was a daily sight as the fire was lighted in the big cupola every morning about 10:00 o'clock. Within a few minutes after the proper heat was reached the smoke was dissipated and the cupola was loaded with the metal to be melted. Iron was poured every day from 2:00 o'clock until 4:30.

In addition to Robert Stauffer, other members of the management staff in 1961 were Clyde Brindel who had been with the foundry since 1915 and became plant superintendent in 1935; Don Roberts who joined the company in 1927 and had been foundry superintendent since 1945; Jack Richards who had worked since l938 and had been assistant foundry superintendent since 1959; Dale Berry who had worked since 1947 and had been in charge of quality control since 1960; Gene Coe had been office manager since 1955. Workers in the plant included Dick Reed, Laymon Howard, Ronnie Bridegroom, Roy Hippensteel , Homer Kerr and Charlie Conrad. There were as many as 85 on the payroll in about 1960.

 
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The North Manchester Foundry was among the first in this area to install a profit-sharing plan for its employees beginning in 1935. Group insurance benefits began in 1929, vacation pay in 1944, holiday pay in 1950 and an employee loan plan since 1954. All of these were innovative at the time.