The History of Racine Trunk Company
Among the large manufacturing enterprises of Racine which have brought the city to its present position of distinction as a great industrial and commercial center is the Racine Trunk Company, which has passed through an era of prosperous existence covering thirty-one years. The company was organized April 1, 1885, by John F. Wadewitz, T. C. Wadewitz and Herman O. Wadewitz together with A. B. Augustine. The business was carried on under firm organization until 1895, when it was incorporated with John F. Wadewitz as president, T. C. Wadewitz as vice president and Herman O. Wadewitz as secretary and treasurer. No change has occurred since save that Miss M. A. Wadewitz has succeeded T. C. Wadewitz in the vice presidency, the latter having sold out in 1901. The business was begun with a three of three or four workmen, the factory being established at No. 1007 Superior Street in a building forty by eighty feet. Since that time they have added four buildings and now have a plant two hundred and eighty by eighty feet, three and four stories in height and of brick construction. The plant is operated with steam power and they manufacture trunks, traveling bags and wood novelties of all kinds. Something of the continued growth of the business is indicated in the fact that they have now sixty employees, most of whom are skilled workmen, and they are also represented upon the road by six or seven traveling salesmen. They sell to dealers and the product goes to all parts of the United States, their business now amounting to about, two hundred thousand dollars annually.
Source: Racine, Belle City of the lakes, and Racine County, Wisconsin : a record of settlement, organization, progress and achievement; Chicago: S. J. Clarke Pub. Co., 1916, 1216 pgs.
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