Let’s Talk Trash! SEPT/OCT 2017
©2017 The Keenan Group, Inc
Who is ?
This article is the beginning of a continuing story taken from AO Smith’s History Book printed © 2015. The purpose is to educate and inform our kids!
Did you know that AO Smith is more than a water heater manufacturing company? A. O. Smith has been in operation for over 140 years having started in 1874 by Charles Jeremiah Smith. He made hardware parts for baby carriages and bicycles, and so much more! Two of his sons, then a third, Arthur Oliver Smith, joined the Milwaukee
It is well known in Cheatham County, Tennessee, that A. O. Smith purchased State Industries (State Stove) which was one of the largest water heater manufacturing companies in the US. their problems, and helping them find a better way. He believed strongly in doing business with honesty and integrity. In the 1870’s there were 30 tanneries in Milwaukee producing wooden
Charles Jeremiah Smith was born in England in 1821. At 12 years old and gifted with his hands, he whittled a model wooden ship so detailed it was displayed at the London Museum. At 16 years of age, Smith became an indentured apprentice to Maudslay Sons and Field of London where his five year apprenticeship exposed him to some of the most advanced marine machine manufacturing thinking of the time. In 1843 C.J. Smith immigrated to the United States when he was 22 years old with the intent of finding work in New York. Ultimately, Smith resided in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In 1845 he opened a blacksmith shop which he sold 5 years later and went to work for M&M Railroad where his mechanical skills served him well. Constantly learning and watching, he received a patent in 1858 for a railway station indicator , that he was able to put to use on a number of Wisconsin passenger railroads. Leaving the railroad experience behind, in the summer of 1874, C. J. Smith started another small business making hardware specialties . The machinist entrepreneur could not have imagined that his one-person business would grow and thrive
business. A. O. Smith and his brothers shared their
lasts to fashion the leather upper of shoes and boots, but the wood degraded quickly and needed frequent replacement. It was a challenge for C.J. Smith to master, and he did by creating a small component
father’s belief in technology and innovation. In 1899, during the earliest days of the automobile
by shearing a strip of sheet metal by hand and shaped the strip to a U . He then completed the rounding process in forming a die and joined the edges by brazing - applying molten solder to the edges of the metal. Slipped inside the wood, the little tube significantly lengthened the lifespan of the last. In 1888, The business that C. J. Smith founded grew quickly, supplying metal parts for baby carriages making springs, axles, hub caps, and metal braces for parasol tops. Smith also developed a method for making lightweight front forks for bicycles and within 10 years became the largest manufacturer of bicycle components in the country.
revolution, A. O. Smith developed a new, lightweight steel car frame. Within a few short years, he was selling these frames to a who’s who of car makers including Cadillac (One of A.O. Smith’s first customers that remained a customer for 90 years) , Oldsmobile, and Ford. (This story will continued in the Nov/Dec issue of Let’s Talk Trash-News!) C.J. Smith was a gifted machinist & entrepreneurial genius who believed if his customer had a challenge, he would face it “head on” and engineer a way to not just make it, but make it better and then faster! C.J. Smith’s mission has continued for over 140 years. With A.O. Smith’s engineering, creativity, and ingenuity, they have made a profound impact on many industries - from shoes to bombs , as well as, survived many economic obstacles and the wraths of nature. Shoe Lasts Baby Carriages Bicycles Automotive Frames Bomb Casings Large Diameter Steel Pipe Oil Stills Brewery vessels Water Heaters Electric Motors Water Softeners Glass Lined Silos Garbage Disposals ... and more to come
to become a global manufacturer with more than 10,000 employees. What C. J. Smith did know and understand was the importance of taking care of
his customers, solving
Q: What is a Shoe Last ? A: The solid form around which a shoe is molded The fit of a shoe depends on the design, shape and volume of the Shoe Last. The shoe last must represent the anatomical information of the foot, at the same time giving the finished shoe a pleasing and fashionable appearance.
The indentured apprenticeship is a system of on-the-job training going back to the guilds of the Middle Ages. Apprentices signed a contract known as an “indenture,” binding them to serve a master for seven years in exchange for learning his trade.
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