Scovill Manufacturing Company
Scovill Manufacturing Company
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Scovill Manufacturing Company
Specimen, circa 1930's
American Bank Note Company
12" (w) by 8" (h)
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Scovill traces its history to 1802, when Abel Porter & Company began making metal buttons in a shop on South Main Street. Brothers Lamson and William Scovill bought into the business in 1811, eventually taking it over entirely while continually expanding the product line to include all things made of brass. Several different branches of the company were eventually consolidated when the Scovill brothers incorporated their business as the Scovill Manufacturing Company.
William Scovill’s son-in-law Frederick J. Kingsbury (who created the city’s motto, Quid aere perennius) became president of Scovill Manufacturing in 1868, but the driving force of the company was soon acknowledged to be two men hired as bookkeepers in 1862: Chauncey Porter Goss and Mark Leavenworth Sperry. Like the Scovill brothers before them, Goss and Sperry worked well as a team and were described later in a company history as representing “the drive, the true entrepreneurship” of Scovill Manufacturing. They quickly proved their worth to the company and became upper management in only a few years — Goss became treasurer in 1866 and Sperry became secretary in 1869, and both joined the board of directors in 1877. Kingsbury entrusted them with the daily operations and management of the company while he occupied himself largely with outside interests. Goss eventually succeeded him as president.
Goss and Sperry made significant changes to the company’s operations, standardizing customer-related procedures, improving the bookkeeping procedures, and improving filing systems to keep up with both the growing number of files and changes to methodology and technology (the introduction of the telegraph required a new format to messages). They instituted monthly reports from department heads to monitor production efficiency. In short, Goss and Sperry sought to use the best methods available for running one of the largest brass companies in the country.
At the start of the twentieth century, Scovill remained a family business, but now it was the Goss and Sperry families who ran the company. Four of Goss’s sons and three of Sperry’s sons eventually joined the company, after receiving advanced training in engineering and, in some cases, apprenticing in the Scovill shops. In 1934, Time magazine reported that Scovill was “completely dominated by the sons and grandsons of the late Chauncey Porter Goss.”
Scovill grew rapidly during the early part of the 20th century, acquiring Hamilton Beach in Wisconsin, the Oakville Company, A. Schrader’s Son in Brooklyn, the American Pin Company in Waterville, the Gilchrist Company in New Jersey, and the Morency-Van Buren Manufacturing Company in Michigan. The company embraced new products and new technologies, taking the lead in cosmetics containers (Scovill was the first to invent and manufacture a lipstick holder that could be operated with one hand), and snap fasteners for machine-washable clothing.
Scovill made a vital upgrade to its Waterbury casting shop after learning of Siegfried Junghan’s continuous casting machine in 1936. Two years later, German technicians arrived at Scovill to install a Junghan machine, but they left before completing the installation when England and France declared war with Germany. The installation was completed by Scovill engineers, who added a few improvements. It was the first continuous casting machine to be successfully used in the United States, producing close to four tons of brass billets (cylindrical or rectangular bars) every hour.
Scovill’s production during the mid 20th century was largely dedicated to the war effort, creating a need for a larger workforce. After the war, Scovill returned to its normal production. In 1953, Scovill produced an estimated 250,000 different items for about 6,000 customers, ranging from coin blanks for the US Mint, paper clips, lipstick holders, metal dress fasteners, dime banks, diving helmets, vacuum cleaners, ice-cream scoops, refrigerator parts, and surgical goods.
Certificates carry no value on any of today's financial indexes and no transfer of ownership is implied. All items offered are collectible in nature only. So, you can frame them, but you can't cash them in!
All of our pieces are original - we do not sell reproductions. If you ever find out that one of our pieces is not authentic, you may return it for a full refund of the purchase price and any associated shipping charges.
Are the certificates offered on your site genuine or reproductions?All of the certificates you see on our site are genuine pieces, we do not sell any reproductions.
Are the certificates you sell negotiable on any of today's stock markets or indexes?
No. All of the pieces we sell are either canceled or obsolete and have collectible value only.
Are the images presented in your product listings of the exact piece I will receive?
It depends. We try to present images of the exact piece you will receive whenever possible. However, when we are offering quantities of a piece, this is impossible. Within every product page we detail whether or not you will be receiving the exact certificate listed, or if the image is a representative example of the one you will receive.
How will you ship my order and how much do you charge?
We ship all orders via the United States Postal Service. Most domestic orders are shipped via Ground Advantage. USPS International, Priority and Express Mail, UPS and DHL services are also available, and costs are calculated during checkout. Current charges may be reviewed here.
Can I return my purchase?
Absolutely. You may return any merchandise, for any reason, within 30 days of the purchase date for a full refund of the purchase price.
We guarantee all of our pieces to be authentic. If you ever determine that a piece is not authentic, it may be returned for a full refund of the purchase price as well as any associated shipping charges.
If your order exceeds $35, and the shipping address is within the United States, shipping via USPS Ground Advantage is FREE!
We make every effort to ship out all orders within 24 hours of receipt.
We ship the majority of orders via the USPS, with domestic orders using the Ground Advantage service.
Shipping is calculated during checkout. Upgraded services such as Priority and Express Mail, as well as UPS and DHL options, are also available.
As soon as your order is shipped you will receive your tracking information via email.
OVERSEAS ORDERS PLEASE NOTE THAT WE DECLARE FULL ORDER VALUE ON ALL SHIPMENTS. CUSTOMER IS RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL VAT/CUSTOMS CHARGES.
Our goal is to make sure every item you receive is exactly what you had in mind. If you not happy with your purchase, we’ll help you get it sorted in a timely and professional manner.
You can return anything we offer for an exchange, refund or store credit within 30 days of delivery. Return shipping costs may apply, and the item must be in its original condition and packaging.
Any shipping charges collected on the original order are not eligible for a refund.