Sunday, September 28, 2014

Kilby Manufacturing Company, Cleveland, Ohio

Herbert Myrick.  Sugar.  A New and Profitable Industry in the United States for Capital, Agriculture and Labor.  New York & Chicago:  Orange Judd Company, 1897
My perception of sailing ships is no doubt overly-romanticized--I picture them clipping along under the clean ocean winds. It's easy to forget that their purpose was to to serve such enormous smoke-belching factories.


Unknown said...

Thanks for posting this photo. My grandfather was Joseph Franklin Kilby and I am always looking for images and articles about the Kilby Manufacturing Company. My father worked there for a few years also.

The Duke said...

You're welcome. I'd welcome more information on the firm. Also, I visited your blog--your photographs are stunning!

Walton County Winter Writers said...

I made four references to Joseph Kilby in Sweet Energy, a history of Monitor Sugar Company published in 2000. Also, many more will be made in a second book detailing the history of the Michigan sugar industry. For that one I am including a profile of Joseph Kilby and other manufacturers of sugar processing equipment. If you can spare a photo of Joseph and his sons, it would be helpful. I also maintain a blog-Who was Who in the Michigan sugar industry (currently under repair)and include Joseph in that record. This is the blog post:
Kilby, Joseph Franklin (Feb 22, 1847- July 12, 1914)
Born in Karlsruhe, Baden, Germany, owner of Kilby Manufacturing. Emigrated to the United States in 1864 where he began his career as a bookkeeper with the firm of Kolty and Krommer in Sandusky, Ohio. In 1873, he formed a partnership with George Barney under the firm name Barney and Kilby, machinists. Fifteen years later he formed the Kilby Manufacturing Company in Cleveland, Ohio and bought the firm of Prospect Machine and Engine Company. From there he concentrated on manufacturing equipment for the infant beet sugar industry and quickly rose to prominence by constructing sixteen beet factories in eight years and providing equipment for several others, nine of which were in Michigan. He also served briefly as president of a beet sugar company in Marine City, Michigan. He married Lucinda Reed, Sandusky, Ohio in that city, died. Two sons, Daniel, born May, 1870 and Herbert, born in October, 1872. Both joined him in the management of Kilby Manufacturing. A company that constructed more beet sugar factories in Michigan than any other manufacturer, 9 of the 24 factories constructed in Michigan. They were:

Essexville 1899
Alma 1900
Mount Clemens 1901
Lansing 1901
Carrollton 1902
Saginaw 1902
East Tawas 1903
Menominee 1903
Reference: Some of the material in this post appeared in the History of Cleveland pp 388-389 and the Sugar Tramp-1954 by Daniel Gutleben. I can be reached at