Want to debate the York County manufacturer of yore who left the most impressive legacy?
Two from the 19th-century immediately come to the top of my list: P.H. Glatfelter I and S. Morgan Smith… .
Glatfelter bailed out Jacob Hauer in acquiring the paper mill in Spring Grove in 1863. That mill became the hub of the paper manufacturer today that bears his name, headed by P.H. I’s great, great grandson George Glatfelter II.
Then another Jacob – Jacob Loucks – and other York Manufacturing Co. investors ran into tough times in the 1880s. P.H. stepped forward to bail out his brother-in-law, Loucks. (Jacob Loucks’ grandson and namesake outpaced him in legacy. Jacob Loucks Devers became a four-star general in World War II.) York Manufacturing went through various name and ownership changes, and the air conditioning/refrigeration company today is known as York International — actually Johnson Controls York.
Those are P.H.’s two prizes, among many other investments.
But Moravian-pastor-turned-industrialist S. Morgan Smith rivals Glatfelter’s legacy.
He was a key part of the early years of York Manufacturing.
But his own company, S. Morgan Smith, was an early manufacturer of washing machines and later made turbines, blades and other parts of the hydropower business.
In some permutation, S. Morgan Smith spawned Voith Hydro, American Hydro and Precision Components. The latter companies operate today.
That’s a four-company legacy.
Indeed, Precision Custom Components recently made the news when it borrowed money to position itself for the future. It seems to be a bright future. http://www.ydr.com/search/ci_4531921 The company makes dry casks and other equipment used to store and handle spent nuclear fuel, a growth market.