Schenuit Industries

Frank G. Schenuit was  the son of Alfons Schenuit a famous musician, Frank and my mom Below in his plane

Frank G Schenuit was a very successful Baltimore entrepreneur  and was developer of the Schenuit Tire company . 

The Schenuit story began in 1912 when Frank Schenuit, as a young man, started making tires for racing motorcycles in his tire shop at 1200 Mount Royal Ave as well taking over the distribution of the Pennsylvania automobile tire and was associated with the India Rubber Company of Akron Ohio. He also patented a non-skid pneumatic tire he called the Double Grip.

By 1921 he patented the double grip tire and also built his own manufacturing facility producing “Schenuit Tires”.  The plant grew tremendously and they made tires for the United Sates Government aircraft during the war and afterwards.

In 1928, Later he bought a former Woodberry cotton mill.  He  moved his tire making facility to that Woodberry plant (Below) where he turned out thousands of aircraft tires during World War II not only for commercial planes but also the Military   

Ever since Frank G. Schenuit, opened his Double Grip tire factory, his name has been associated with a campus of industrial Woodberry buildings.  Frank left a lasting legacy when he had his name spelled out in bricks on the plant’s landmark chimney (above).

 

 

According to Baltimore Sun articles,  by 1925 Baltimore’s Mayor Howard Jackson as well as officials of the old State Roads Commission and the Maryland Motor Vehicles Commission were admiring Schenuit’s new Woodberry plant. 

The Sun’s account of the tire plant opening described the Pennsylvania Railroad’s tracks that ran alongside the building, making it easy to ship in raw materials and ship out tires. “Two huge steam boilers, of 210 horsepower, deliver the steam for the curing process,” The Sun reported, adding that the water for the steam came from the adjoining Jones Falls.  The plant initially employed 100, but that changed as Schenuit’s sales increased.  He was forced to rebuild his whole operation in late 1929 after a major fire destroyed the plant.

The Sun said that the flames were visible all over the city and that 10,000 people assembled to observe the blaze.

Schenuit advertised “direct factory prices” and pledged that “every Schenuit tire is made in Baltimore,” urging his customers to “patronize local industry and help Baltimore prosper.”  The plant went into overdrive during World War II, as did other foundries and industries along the Jones Falls Valley. Toward the end of the war, he supervised another extension of his plant to keep up with demand. The plant was then running three shifts a day and had the biggest backlog of orders in its history.

In 1939, Schenuit entered the aircraft tire field, and with the onset of World War II, produced mostly military aircraft tires. During the post-war period, Frank resumed production of automotive tires. 

Frank operated as a sole proprietorship until 1945, and then Frank incorporated.     Following Mr. Schenuit’s death in 1948, the ownership of all stock passed to his three daughters. Back then, the president and active head of the corporation from 1948 until 1963 was Roy Neely.

Edgar H. Spilman, Albert E. Thompson and Oliver S. Travers – pictured above on right, the husbands of the stockholders, entered the business in 1945, 1948 and 1953 respectively; and were officers and directors.  Edgar Spilman resigned and was succeeded as a director by his wife.     

Back to its business:  In 1949 Schenuit decided to began marketing through distributors with an increasing emphasis on the manufacture of non-automotive industrial tires, with sales primarily to equipment manufacturers, and Schenuit resumed the manufacture and sale of aircraft tires for private planes. After the start of the Korean War in 1950, sales of military aircraft tires became the major part of Schenuit’s business again.  Schenuit saw business increase substantially from 1949 to 1960. 

During the eight years ending April 30, 1955, Schenuit had made major improvements to increase plant capacity and to modernize its production, research and testing equipment.  During the fiscal years 1956-1962, inclusive, Schenuit spent $3,964,436 for fixed assets.  

My father, Oliver Travers became president and he saw the need to diversify and so he did a secondary offering to raise money to purchase other companies . On April 25, 1962, a public secondary offering of 240,000 shares of the Class A common stock was made to the public at a price of $14 a share or a total of $3,360,000. 

My Father, Oliver Travers as president purchased: * The Nelson Pallet Company which is a global pallet corporation operating in Baltimore since 1918 located at Sparrows Point,

The Nelson Pallet Company above

Then Ollie as president purchased the Jackson Wheelbarrow Company in Harrisburg Pennsylvania as well as other companies.  The Jackson Wheelbarrow company makes 85% of the wheelbarrows in North America.  When Hurricane Agnus hit the plant was flooded but it survived and today it is owned by Ames

As Schenuit was a unionized company by the United Rubber Workers they had to deal with striking employees.  They never came to an agreement so my father closed the plant and sold it to McCreary Tire and Rubber (not the Schenuit Corporation)

Schenuit was listed on the S&P and then about 1985 my father sold all the assets to Allegheny Ludlum.  He was brought into Allegheny to run the “Schenuit ” companies

and then he was made president of the Multi National multi Billion dollar company. Allegheny Ludlum had about 450 subsidiaries around the globe.  

One of the Great companies was Gillett .  Gillett makes all the ceremonial swords for Royalty in the world so I have swords actual duplicates of : the swords Price Charles wore on his wedding day, the Olympic sword presented to the olympic committee and so on 

My dad eventually took the Allegheny corporation (not Schenuit)  into bankruptcy and then he retired 

It all started from Frank Schenuit below and then my dads hard work and proper management . 

Alfons his father below