Cement Casket Manufacturing Company, 1914
The Cement Casket Manufacturing Company was organized in 1914 by F. O. Downer ofBattle Creek. The firm purchased the building of the former Cook ManufacturingCompany on the northwest corner of N. Huron and E. Mulberry Streets for the price of$4,000. The Cook Company was closed on January 1, 1912 as part of the scandal andfailure of the Albion National Bank. The Casket firm produced a full line of caskets whichwere shipped across the United States. During the 1920s its annual sales topped$100,000. F. N. Arbaugh served as president of the company, H. B. Lumberg vicepresident,and F. H. Swift as secretary-treasurer. The firm closed its lids in the mid-1920s.
The wooden building at Huron and Mulberry subsequently became the headquarters ofthe newly organized Decker Screw Company in 1927. A year later, the Albion Machine &Tool Company also had its start here under the direction of its founder, Albert Beatty.The structure eventually was acquired by the expanding Union Steel Company, whichdemolished it in November, 1956.
From our Historical Notebook this week we present a drawing of the layout of theCement Casket Company plant, taken from the 1918 Insurance Map of Albion. Doesanyone have a photograph or postcard of the Casket Company showing the sign on thetop of the building? Let me know and we can feature it in the future here in our HistoricalNotebook.
Source: Frank Passic, THE CEMENT CASKET COMPANY, Morning Star, December 17, 1995, pg. 18