Rathbone was founded by Andrew B. Rathbone in 1905 in Palmer, MA, as a small pinion wire-making manufacturer that serviced the clock industry in central New England. Mr. Rathbone was joined by several brothers shortly thereafter and Rathbone grew as a family owned company over the years. It moved to its current location in Palmer, MA in 1912.
Rathbone continued in Rathbone family hands until after World War II, when it was purchased in the 1970’s by Handy & Harmon. Subsequently, Rathbone was acquired in 1988 by entrepreneur Frank Carter, who sold the business to Carpenter Technology Corporation in 1997. Carpenter completed the current cycle by selling the business to Calvi Holding, Srl in June of 2008.
Rathbone pioneered the manufacture of cold drawn, special-shape bar and wire in the United States. Its profile products and markets changed as American industry’s requirements changed.
In addition to serving American industry over the years, Rathbone’s contributions to success in World War II are little known. In fact, Rathbone’s metal profile shapes helped the United States industrial base produce enormous amounts of a wide variety of materiel required to win the war. As the attached article indicates, Rathbone and its profile shapes were The “Secret Weapon” That Helped to Win the Battle of Production.
Currently, Rathbone produces hundreds of custom profile shapes for a large number of markets, from water pipe gaskets to high tech, power generation to firearms, automotive to aerospace, medical to general industrial and many others. Over 100 years, Rathbone remains a leading cold drawn and cold rolled metal profiles supplier to American industry.
1905 Andrew Rathbone: Garage subsequently moved to current location in 1912. Watch/Clock pinions
1970’s Handy & Harmon: Prominent in the metals industry and purchased complimentary companies to expand/diversify their portfolio. (Dealt in precious metals and dabbled in plastic molding)
1988 Frank Carter (Entrepreneur): Formerly President of Thomson Linear
1997 Carpenter Technology: Prominent Stainless Steel Mill in PA. Purchased complimentary companies to expand their portfolio to include metal profiles
2008 Calvi Holding: Leader in Special Steel Profiles in Europe to include Hot Rolled, Hot Extruded, Cold Rolled and Cold Drawn shapes. Includes 12 Companies worldwide and 1 joint venture in China. 9 Companies in the metallurgical division and 3 companies in the mechanical division. Purchased Rathbone to expand their presence in North America and grow revenues worldwide.