#588 – Local 100+ Year Old Manufacturers

Posted on | The Agurban

Local 100+ Year Old Manufacturers

Last week we shared a list from industryweek.com that included the names of 10 U.S. manufacturing companies that have been in business for 100+ years. This week, we want to add to the list with two of our very own local manufacturers that have each been in operation for more than 125 years!

John Boos & Co.

John Boos & Co., based in Effingham, IL is one of the oldest manufacturers of premium quality foodservice equipment and butcher blocks in the U.S.A.  Boos has been in business continuously since 1887. It was in his Effingham, IL blacksmith shop that founder, Conrad Boos first invented what would become the original Boos Block®. Having harvested sycamore from local wooded areas, and processed it in his sawmill, Conrad brought it to his blacksmith shop for finishing. That first block of sycamore slab placed on three legs evolved with sheer purpose of a block to absorb the shock of this smith’s hammer against the anvil. It was the local butcher, who having seen and admired Conrad’s block, became impassioned about owning a block for his meat market. Unknowingly, Conrad’s son, John, who having made and sold that first block to the local butcher, took John Boos & Co. into the infancy of the 125-year reign of serving customers in the commercial market sector.

Beginning in the mid 1960’s, John Boos & Co. further expanded the growth of its stainless steel fabrication. Ever changing to accommodate the market requirements, the company’s manufacturing expanded to include an entire range of stainless products. The company combined North American hard rock maple and foodservice grade stainless steel to begin its blended offering of commercial quality carts and work tables. John Boos & Co. currently continues to be the only company in the U.S.A that has both stainless steel fabrication and wood manufacturing facilities in one location.

With over 125 years of adaptation to the markets, John Boos & Co. has become a primary provider of gourmet products and foodservice equipment throughout the industry. In fact, you can find a Boos Butcher Block in The White House and in most fine restaurants and kitchens around the world.

Check them out at johnboos.com.

Siemer Milling Company

It all began in Teutopolis, Illinois on November 6, 1882, when the company opened for business as “Hope Mills, Uptmor & Siemer, Proprietors”. In 1906, Joseph Siemer and his son, Clemens J., bought out the Uptmor interests and changed the name to Siemer Milling Company.

Under the leadership of Quintin A. Siemer, son of Clem J., the company became recommitted to flour milling in the late 1950s as new opportunities presented themselves. By 1979, demand justified the opening of a much larger new mill at Teutopolis, Illinois. In 1986, Richard C. Siemer, son of Quintin, became the fourth generation of Siemers to lead the company. Under Rick’s leadership another mill was built in Hopkinsville, KY in 1995. A third mill was build last year in West Harrison, IN.

Today, Siemer Milling continues to be a family- and employee-owned company, with the fifth generation now running the operations. If you have ever eaten Girl’s Scout cookies, you have enjoyed some of Siemer Milling’s products!

Learn more about Siemer Milling at siemermilling.com.


NOTE – We heard from our good friend Maury Forman (Startup Wisdom) who passed along a list of their “The Century Club”, containing the names of over 100 businesses that have existed in the State of Washington for 100+ years. Check it out here. Thanks for passing this along, Maury!