CINCINNATI GALVANIZING CO.
The Cincinnati Galvanizing Co. was established by the sons of John Micahel Schott in 1905 with an initial investment of $20,000. The sons had been operating a firm their father established in the late 1870s, known as J.M. Schott & Sons Cooperage. After their father died in 1903, his sons, who became known as the Schott Brothers, decided to establish a galvanizing company. It was located next to the cooperage on the east side of what is now McMicken Avenue, between Tafel Street and Straight Street. The beginning years of the Cincinnati Galvanizing Co. are briefly discussed under the Schott Family. This section provides a somewhat more detailed examination into this galvanizing concern, which operated under the Schott's family ownership until 1962, or for nearly 60 years. After it was sold by the Schott family, the company operated for about another decade, closing in 1970.
The Early Years
The impetus for the Cincinnati Galvanizing Company may have been initially to improve their barrels with galvanized rims. However, it was likely to also diversify from their cooperage business, and in doing so, transition from wooden barrels to galvanized metal containers. Even though it was more than a decade before Prohibition, the prospect of reduce demand for their wooden barrels likely lingered, and was another reason to establish a galvanizing company. Therefore, in 1920, with the success of the galvanizing business, they decided to create a large galvanizing plant in the Cincinnati Mill Creek Industrial District located at 4879 Spring Grove Avenue.
Products & Clients
Standard products for Cincinnati Galvanizing Co. were galvanized 30 gallon metal trash cans, buckets, waste baskets and wash bins. But the firm was also involved with specialized products, such as the King Seamless Potato Ricer and canisters for hand operated fire extinguishers. In addition, by the mid 20th century the firm expanded their product lines to include decorative waste paper baskets, including those with images of Disney characters. Clients included local and regional firms as well as some national chains such as Sears. It also had various government and military customers, not only for their standard products, but also for specific contracts such as 50 gallon water barrels used in fallout shelters during the early Cold War period.
The name of the company on products was usually abbreviated as Cin'ti. Galv. Co. In the 1931 obituary of Essie Schott, the mother of the Schott Brothers, the positions of the brothers operating the Cincinnati Galvanizing company at that time were listed as follows: Christian Schott, President; William C. Schott, General Manager; George Schott, Secretary; and, Louis Schott, Treasurer. In 1937, possibly around the time the cooperage business was dissolved, the aforesaid officers of the galvanizing company also acquired the Bavarian Brewing Co. The brewery operated across the Ohio River from Cincinnati in Covington, KY, until 1966.
Sale of the Company and the Spring Grove Plant
The Cincinnati Galvanizing Co. was sold in the mid-1960s to Bell Intercontinental, a diversified industrial company that produced Bell Helicopters, industrial staplers and automotive parts. This acquiring firm was formed when Textron acquired Bell Helicopter from Bell Aircraft in 1960. As emblematic of the consolidation that occurred among industrial companies in the U.S. over the past decades, several subsequent acquisitions occurred. The remaining holdings of the parent firm, Bell Intercontinental, was acquired by Wheelabrator Frye in November, 1972. Then Wheelabrator Frye merged with Signal Corporation in 1982. In 1985 Signal Corp was acquired by Allied Signal and in 1999 Honeywell acquired Allied Signal. During this period, the galvanizing company and the property used to operate it was sold. Today the former Cincinnati Galvanizing plant is one of the regional facilities for Clean Harbors Inc., a public company, known as Spring Grove Resource Recovery Inc. The original galvanizing, cooperage and saloon structures no longer exist.
The background photo of this page is of the Bavarian Lager Cellar or Tunnel, referred to as T1 above.