The Bedford Historical Society archives contains the histories of many of Bedford’s businesses and industries. Products made in Bedford are found all over the world. Some of the histories contained include: Several Chair manufacturers including B.L. Marble and Taylor Chair, Holmes Bronze Foundry, The Bailey-Walker / Walker China Company, The McMyler-Interstate Company ( they built the equipment that dug the Panama Canal and made the largest crane in the world known as the League Island Crane), The Finney (FinCo) Company, The Covers Company and Ben Venue Laboratories. These are just a few.
Following are some histories:
The B. L. Marble Chair Co.
In 1894 Mr. Marble formed the B. L. Marble Chair Company. This was the beginning of many years of turning out fine wooden chairs made for comfort elegance and made to last.
The Marble & Shattuck Chair Company
The name was used in Bedford, Ohio from 1885 to 1894. About 1901 the Marble & Shattuck Company moved to a new facility in Cleveland.
Ben Venue Laboratories
Established in 1938. Ben Venue received the coveted Army-Navy “E” Award for its efforts during WWII.
The Best Foundry Co.
Established in 1905 was a worldwide producer of gray metal castings. Was well known for castings stoves.
The Finney Company
Started in 1930 by Lewis H. Finneburgh. Also known as FinnCo, the Finney Antenna Company produced antennas and accessories, MATV equipment.
The Franklin Oil and Gas Company
Founded 1903 by Frederick B. Senter. This company produced high-grade cylinder oil, engine oil and boiler compounds.
Harper Aircraft Co.
Moved to Bedford about 1930. Built monoplanes.
Jack & Heintz Inc.
Founded in 1940 by Co-founders William S. Jack and Ralph M. Heintz. This company was a major military supplier during World War II.
Lewis Welding and Engineering Corporation
Started in December 1938 by J. T. Lewis, Jr. This company was a military supplier during World War II. They earned the Army-Navy “E” Award in August 1945.
The McMyler-Interstate Co.
The largest manufacturing facility in Bedford was organized in 1910. Specialized in the design and manufacture of large crane and material handling equipment. Including the world’s largest crane built in 1919.
The Stalwart Rubber Company
Started about 1920 by Herman W. Osborn, in a barn behind his home.
The Taylor Chair Company
Started in 1816 is recognized as the oldest manufacturing company in the Western Reserve.
The Walker China Company
The Walker China Company was founded in 1922. Albert M. Walker was an investor in the Bedford China Company, a manufacturing plant that initially manufactured marbles.