Source: The Manchester Republican, May 29, 1873
Spoke and Hub Factory -- Rife, Powell & Walter
In the Summer of 1871 three young men entered into a co-partnership under the firm name of Rife, Powell & Walter, for the purpose of manufacturing SPOKES and HUBS. They purchased suitable grounds on West Main street, erected a main building, and placed a forty horse power engine and other machinery in position, during the fall and early winter, when they began manufacturing. Their business was comparatively light at first, but it gradually increased, and as experience taught them their needs they added to their facilities until at the present time, they have eighteen machines in place, with a capacity to turn out 3,000 spokes, 1,000 neckyokes and whiffle-trees and fifty set of hubs per day. Thus furnishing employment for forty men in the various departments, of cutting, hauling, manufacturing and shipping the work when finished. In addition to their main building, they have commodious sheds in which to season the work. The firm proposes putting in new machinery for manufacturing wagon coupling, as soon as convenient; which will furnish employment for several more hands. They payroll now, when running at their full capacity, will amount to $3,300.00 per month, including the cost of timber; or, about 40,000 per year. All of which is brought from a distance and distributed among the farmers and mechanics of North Manchester and the surrounding country, by the enterprising proprietors of the spoke and hub factory.
The company has no insurance policy on the factory; but they have a policy of their own. By means of the engine a force-pump and 100 feet of hose, they water the exposed parts, and then to make safety doubly sure, they employ a watchman.
Source: The Manchester Republican, November 13, 1873
Rife, Powell & Walters shipped twelve car-loads of spokes this week.
Source: The Manchester Republican, February 19, 1874
RIFE, POWELL & WALTERS, manufacturers of spokes, hubs, neck yokes and whiffle trees, --are located immediately West of the Wabash R.R. on the south side of Main street. They have not been running on full time during the winter, the demand being temporarily cut off by the panic. However they made good use of the time making needed repairs and changes, and have been in full blast for some time.