Grasselli Chemical Company
The Grasselli Chemical Company was an Ohio-based manufacturer of chemicals whose Southern territory was once headquartered in Birmingham.
The company was founded in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1839 by Eugene Ramiro Grasselli as a manufacturer of sulfuric acid. It moved its headquarters to Cleveland in 1867 in order to better supply that city's oil refining industry.
Grasselli acquired a 100-acre parcel near Hillman, four miles from Bessemer in 1899 for a new chemical works. It spent an estimated $100,000 to $200,000 building and equipping the plant for the production of nitric acid and other heavy chemicals. The company also opened a downtown office in the Brown-Marx Building.
The Grasselli Company promoted a type of "social welfare" common among many of the Birmingham District's large employers in the early 20th century. Through various programs companies would seek to improve the health and loyalty of its workforce. In addition to sponsoring an Industrial League baseball team, the Grasselli company constructed houses for workers near the plant, a practice thought to attract a more stable workforce. The residences were heated with steam generated at the plant. The area has since been annexed into Birmingham and is part of the neighborhood of Grasselli Heights in the Grasselli community.
The Grasselli Chemical Company was acquired by E. I. Du Pont de Nemours Co. in 1928. Du Pont closed down its Birmingham operations in the 1940s.
- "Big Chemical Plant Planned." (November 28, 1899) New York Times
- Bennett, James R. (2008) Historic Birmingham and Jefferson County: An Illustrated History. San Antonio, Texas: Birmingham-Jefferson Historical Society/Historical Publishing Network. ISBN 9781893619838