Intricately engraved antique stock certificate from the B. F. Goodrich Company dating back to the 1950's. This document, which contains the printed signatures of the company President and Secretary, was printed by the American Bank Note Company and measures approximately 12" (w) by 8" (h).
The certificate's vignette features two allegorical figures flanking the B. F. Goodrich logo.
Founded by Dr. Benjamin Franklin Goodrich, the B.F. Goodrich Company, later known as BF Goodrich, was among the first rubber tire manufacturers to be located west of the Appalachian mountain range. In the previous year, Goodrich had purchased the Hudson River Rubber Company.
Based in Akron, Ohio, the BF Goodrich Company began as a manufacturer of rubberized hoses, which were sold mostly as firehoses. The company also produced rubberized belts, similar to those used on modern vehicles as serpentine belts (fan belt). As the company grew, it began to manufacture pneumatic bicycle tires, eventually leading to the production of pneumatic automobile tires in 1896, making BF Goodrich the first company in the United States to manufacture this type of tire.
BF Goodrich was not the only tire manufacturer in the United States at the turn of the 20th Century. Among its competitors were Goodyear, Firestone, General and Uniroyal. Due to extensive research and scientific methods, such as tire wear evaluation and longevity testing, BF Goodrich was at the leading edge of the industry. Ford Motor Company, then owned by Henry Ford, chose BF Goodrich tires to be fitted in the new Model A Ford in 1903. That same year, the Model A, equipped with the tires, became the first car to cross the United States from east to west. This event made BF Goodrich a household name.
Later known as the Goodrich Corporation, the company stopped making tires in 1988 and sold the business and the B.F. Goodrich name to Michelin.