After the Rocky River Plant was finished and running good, I left there and operated the Service Department at the Montgomery Ward Store, for a short time. Then I went with the Clifton Engineering Company, where I stayed for almost thirty years.
For a significant number of years prior to 1970, I had functioned as General Superintendent of Construction. It was about that date that Louise and I felt as though we would like to spend our winters in a warmer part of the country, however, the powers that be, felt that if I were to keep my title, I should be available at all times, which was understandable. I therefore gave up my duties as General Supt., but retained an active role in all operations pertaining to construction. I was happy to not have the responsibilities, but to still be involved in most all of the activities.
It was a couple of years later that Mr. Clifton passed away and Ed. Remington, who was the Executive Vice President, was able to arrange financing to buy the company if we, not including Remington, could raise $150,000.00. I got several, (12), of the key supervisory people together and prevailed on them to mortgage homes, or do whatever was necessary, to raise the money. We did it and then Remington asked me if I would be his Vice President. This, I willingly, agreed to because I wanted to be in on anything that had any bearing on the $20,000.00 that I had committed to the venture.
We engaged a Corporate Attorney to draw up an agreement and prepare the necessary documents for establishing new ownership of the Clifton Engineering Company and the Wolverine Equipment Company. We then entered into an agreement with the Administrators of Mr. Clifton’s estate and became the new owners. At our first official meeting, Ed. Remington was elected President, George Smoll became Secretary and I was made Vice President.
The purchase agreement was signed in November of 1972 and our corporate loan was paid off in five years from company earnings, so I guess that you could say that we got the Company for free, if you don’t consider the diligent and dedicated effort expended in the interim. The stock that I had committed $20,000.00 for, in 1972, sold in 1978 for $63,000.00 and by that time the mortgage that we had put on our home was just about all paid off also. I retired 100% in 1979.