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The Richland County – Shelby Chapter
Of The Ohio Genealogical Society

- - - INDUSTRIES - - -

Brightman Manufacturing Co.

 

The Daily Globe, Shelby OH – February 16, 1903
 
 
Cycle Works Sold Today To Brightman Mfg. Co.,
Who Will Move Here From Millersburg, Ohio With Their Entire Plant.
 
 
"Welcome to the Brightman manufacturing company of Millersburg. Today Old Glory was heisted over the plant of
the American bicycle company, announcing that the factory will shortly be occupied again. It has been a long time
since Old Glory flew from the staff at the factory and the sight of the stars and stripes today did the hearts of the people
good as they gazed upon it and realized what it meant for the city. The joyful news that the plant will soon be in oper-
tion is the best news the Globe can announce to the citizens and business men of Shelby. The negotiations have been in
progress for several weeks. The plant was sold at a private sale and it required a longer time to close up the deal than was
at first anticipated. The deed for the factory was secured today and a New York draft for $30,000 was turned over to the
receivers of the American bicycle company. All the information in connection with the deal was closely guarded by J. C.
Fish, Edwin Mansfield and Jonas Feighner, who had the closing of the arrangements in charge. The Globe was in possession
of the facts for several weeks, but the story was not released until today. The Globe is voicing the sentiments of every citizen
when it extends a royal welcome to Mr. (Latham Henry) Brightman, his sons, their families and their employees.
 
Jonas Feighner had charge of the arrangements in this city and when the telegram was received at 1 o'clock today he at
once made arrangements to have the whistles of several of the factories blown. The telegram addressed to Feighner said
'Contract closed, everything alright. Will be home at 2:15.' The telegram was signed by Edwin Mansfield and John C. Fish.
 
Big black clouds of smoke will soon be rolling out of the chimneys of the American bicycle company which has been
standing idle for so long. Within two years from this time between 300 and 400 skilled mechanics will be working in
the factory and their wages will be flowing into the legitimate channels of trade in Shelby. Edwin Mansfield and John
C. Fish were in Cleveland today and closed the deal which made the factory the property of the Brightman manufacturing
company of Millersburg,. O. This company is now engaged in manufacturing machinery covered by patent, used in making
steel shafting for the transmission of power. They do practically all the business in that line in the United States and their
trade is an extensive one in foreign countries. Their objective in coming to Shelby is to secure better shipping and shop
facilities in order to meet the requirements of their trade which is constantly growing. They find that the bicycle factory is
just what they want and can be adapted nicely to their business. - - -
 
The new company will install their business in the plant of the American bicycle company as soon as possible and until
they get their new machinery which will cost $100,000 they will take care of the present orders at Millersburg. They will
probably employ, as soon as the plant is equipped here, from 100 to 150 skilled mechanics which undoubtedly inside of
two years will be increased to 300 or more employees. They expect to take charge of the plant at once and go into full
operation without delay.
 
As usual Jonas Feighner of Shelby figured in the plan of locating the Brightman company in this city. He is employed by
the Shelby electric company (Lamp Works) as a traveling salesman and dropped into the Brightman plant in Millersburg.
In conversation with Mr. Brightman, Mr. Feighner learned that he was looking for a new location and in his invincible way.
Mr. Feighner described the factory in Shelby and the excellent shipping facilities which the company would enjoy if
located here. He made a favorable impression on Mr. Brightman who became interested in the matter and informed him
that he would be pleased to take the matter up with some of the prominent men in Shelby who were interested in such
matters. Mr. Feighner reported the results of his conversation to J. C. Fish, who in turn reported to Edwin Mansfield. The
city solicitor and his law partner, Mayor Long, arranged to have Mr. Brightman and his son come to Shelby. They did
so and were shown through the factory by Mr. Feigner. They were favorably impressed with the plant but returned to
Millersburg without making known their intentions. Later they asked for a blue print of the factory which was furnished
by Mr. Mansfield. The officials of the company went over this and studied out how they could adapt the factory to their
business. Mr. Brightman accompanied by his superintendent came to Shelby and went over the factory again. A conference
resulted and Mr. Brightman signed a contract to take the company plant if it could be secured by the Shelby people. - - -
 
It was last December when Jonas Feighner entered the Brightman factory in Millersburg to sell them incandescent lamps,
He found that the company manufactured the straightening which are used in the Shelby tube factory. He was astonished
that a factory of that size should be located in a place like Millersburg. Imagine his surprise when Mr. Brightman who was
showing him through the plant informed him that he was going to remove the plant to Cleveland and that he had the blue
prints of the Cleveland factory at that time under consideration. Jonas forgot that he was selling lamps for the Shelby
electric company and produced every argument he could think of in favor of Shelby. The result was that he would not
leave Mr. Brightman until he promised that he would not close the deal to move to Cleveland until he came to Shelby
and investigated what this city had to offer. Mr. Brightman came to Shelby and his visit was kept secret so that nothing
was made public until today when the matter was entirely closed and there was no possibility of the deal falling through." *
 
 
The Brightman Company (on Smiley Ave.) as it appeared in 1909.
 
 

* The Daily Globe, Shelby OH – February 16, 1903
 

 

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