Thursday, February 25, 2021

Celebrating 150 Years in Business


There are five companies in my Century Club data base founded in 1871, which means they would be celebrating their 150th anniversaries in 2021. However, I'm not quite sure how to position two of them, so I'll just tell you what I could find out and let you decide.

French Paper of Niles, Michigan is a 6th generation manufacturer of specialty paper products, much loved by graphic designers. Their goal is to "make paper that brings beauty to life." In 2019 they 'joined' with Finch Paper Holdings of Glen Falls, New York and are now part of Atlas Industry Holdings, a private investment and equity firm founded in 2002 located in Greenwich, Connecticut. News reports say French Paper continues to operate as an independent company.

Homer Loughlin China Company (HLC) of Newell, West Virginia is the maker of Fiesta tableware and Hall China. In 2020 HLC sold their food service division to Steelite International, a Newcastle PA company that had been purchased by Arbor Investments, a new York/Chicago private equity firm. HLC retained ownership of the Fiesta brand and has changed their name to Fiesta Tableware Company (though it appears that Steelite will be the manufacturer and distributor of Fiesta).

Kennebunk Savings Bank of Kennebunk, Maine is a privately-owned financial institution.

Ritter's Office Outfitters of Mansfield, Ohio is an employee-owned retail office products supplier.

White Rock Beverages is a 5th generation beverage company based in Whitestone, New York known for their high quality club soda, ginger ale and tonic water mixers.

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Founded 1846 -- Still Going 175 Years Later


Four Century Club Companies celebrate their 175th anniversary in 2021: three are private and two of those are 5th generation shoe stores in the same town in Michigan! The one public business, Church & Dwight, is best known for their Arm & Hammer line of baking soda products, though they offer other well known brands as well (such as Pepsodent, Arrid, OxyClean, and Waterpik). Here is the list:

Church & Dwight Ewing, New Jersey public (consumer packaged goods)

Martin's Shoe House Monroe, Michigan 5th & 6th generation (retail shoe store)

Powell Valves (Wm. Powell Company) Cincinnati, Ohio private (industrial valve manufacturer)

Yaeger's Shoes Monroe, Michigan 5th generation (retail shoe store)

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Two U.S. Companies Celebrate 200th Anniversaries in 2021


Two private companies have managed to survive since 1821 to celebrate their 200th anniversary this year. Hearty congratulations to these two businesses:

Bartlett Yarns Harmony, Maine

Hickok Boardman Insurance Burlington, Vermont

Monday, February 22, 2021

New Edition of Book Available

Pleased to announce a new version of my book is now available with an updated list of 1300 U.S. Century Club Companies, including 65 new members founded in 1919 and 1920 - and 27 founded before 1800! Only 12% of these companies are public, and approximately 60% are generational family firms.

Thursday, January 21, 2021

Oldest Companies in Utah


Utah has at least 15 businesses over 100 years old and almost all are generational family firms. Congratulations to these enduring companies:

1862    Daynes Music, Midvale 4th generation (retail musical instruments) 

1870    Berg Mortuary, Provo 4th generation (funeral services)

1879    Shooting Star Saloon, Huntsville private (burgers, beer, soda & chips)

1888    Wheeler Mortuary, Springville 4th generation (funeral services)

1889    Alsco, Salt Lake City 4th generation (linen & uniform rental)

1889    Beesley Monument, Provo 4th & 5th generations (stone monuments)

1890    Wheelwright Lumber, Ogden 3rd generation? (lumber & building materials)

1891    Central Bank, Springville 5th generation (banking & financial services)

1894    Startup Candy, Provo 4th generation? (handmade candy)

1905    UWM Men's Shop, Salt Lake City 5th generation (retail menswear)

1906    Lehi Mills, Lehi managed by 3rd generation (flour mill)

1913    Madsen Dry Cleaners, Provo 4th generation (cleaning services)

1916    Industrial Supply, Salt Lake City 3rd generation (equipment distributor)

1919    Woodbury Corp, Salt Lake City 4th generation (real estate services)

1920    YESCO, Salt Lake City 3rd & 4th generations (signs & lighting manufacturer)

Friday, December 4, 2020

Idaho's Oldest Companies


Idaho may only have been a state since 1890, but it has at least 12 companies that have been in continuous, independent operation for 100 years or more. Here's my list - let me know if you have have others to add.

1861:    Haworth Farm, Franklin 6th generation (grain & hay farm)

1865:    Joyce Livestock Company, Owyhee County 5th generation (cattle ranch)

1865:    Owyhee Avanche, Homedale private (newspaper publisher)

1889:    CSHQA, Boise employee-owned (architecture)

1891:     Hecla Mining Company, Coeur d'Alene public (silver & precious metals mining)

1894:    Tracy General Store, Almo private (retail grocers)

1901:    Idaho Candy Company, Boise 2nd generation (Idaho Spuds, Cherry Cocktails, Owyhee Butter Toffee and other candies)

1902:    Buck Knives, Post Falls 4th generation (manufacture & sell knives)

1904:    D.L. Evans Bancorp, Burley 4th & 5th generations (banking)

1907:    The White Horse Saloon, Spirit Lake private (restaurant & hotel)

1911:    Chesbro Music Company, Idaho Falls 4th & 5th generations (retail & wholesale instruments)

1918:    Idaho Steel, Idaho Falls 2nd generation (manufacture food processing equipment)

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Oldest Businesses in South Dakota


Pierre may be the capital of South Dakota, but Sioux Falls has more Century Club Companies. All told, the state has at least 19 businesses 100 years or older and all of them are privately owned. I could use a little more information for some of them and - as always - if you know of a company that has been in continuous, independent operation for 100 years or more (whether in South Dakota or elsewhere) please leave a comment.  

1876    L.G. Everist, Sioux Falls 5th generation (construction products & services)

1878    Boyce Law Firm, Sioux Falls private (legal services)

1880    Fishback Financial Corp, Brookings 4th generation (banking & finance) 1925?

1883    Look's Marketplace, Sioux Falls private (retail groceries)

1885    First National Bank of Sioux Falls, Sioux Falls private (banking & financial services)

1885    Norberg Paints, Sioux Falls 5th generation (retail paints & coatings)

1888    Schoeneman's Building Materials Center, Sioux Falls 4th generation/employee-ownership (lumber & building materials)

1891    Cadwell, Sanford, Deibert & Garry, Sioux Falls private (legal services)

1894    Christopherson, Anderson, Paulson & Fideler, Sioux Falls private (legal services)

1899    Getty Abstract & Title, Sioux Falls private (real estate services)

1902    Bechtold Jewelry, Sioux Falls 4th generation (retail jeweler)

1907    Wegner Auto Company, Pierre 4th generation (retail automotive)

1909    Girton Adams, Sioux Falls 4th generation (heating/HVAC services)

1910    Journey Group Companies, Sioux Falls private (construction)

1915    Gage Brothers Concrete Products, Sioux Falls employee-owned (construction products)

1918    Josten Concrete Products Company, Sioux Falls 3rd generation? (construction products)

1919    George Boom Funeral Home, Sioux Falls employee-owned? (funeral services)

1919    Henry Carlson Construction, Sioux Falls 3rd generation? (construction)

early 1920s    Parker Transfer & Storage, Sioux Falls 3rd generation (moving services)

Learn more about how these companies managed to thrive through the decades in my book Lessons from Century Club Companies: Managing for Long-Term Success available in paperback at Amazon and Barnes and Noble, and as an e-book on Amazon