Anderson Electric

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Anderson Electric was a company which designed, fabricated and distributed equipment for the electrical power generation and transmission industries. It was acquired by Hubbell Power Systems of Orange, Connecticut in 1996.

George Anderson founded the G. L. Anderson Brass Works as a brass foundry in 1887, serving primarily the needs of the Birmingham District's steel industry. The foundry was acquired by Everett Schuler and his son, Robert in 1925, and reincorporated as the Anderson Brass Works, Inc.

Seeking a way to expand the company's prospects, Robert Schuler consulted with the Alabama Power Company to develop a line of bolted electrical fittings. With a major new client, the company moved from its small factory at 829 39th Street to a much larger facility at 44th Street and 7th Avenue North in 1927.

During the Great Depression, Anderson scaled its workforce down to four employees, and also diversified into manufacturing aluminum cookware, and even roasting coffee beans. The firm's experience with aluminum served it well when the market for electrical fittings recovered.

Shuler also worked to develop new products, including an eye-bolt type ground connector that became a key component of transformer terminals built by Westinghouse Electric of Sharon, Pennsylvania. By 1936 the company employed a full-time engineer, Robert Lock, to develop a full line of electrical substation, transmission and distribution connectors. Lock visited utilities around the country and consulted with them on standardization.

During World War II the company switched over to production of 20mm and 37mm shells and 20-pound fragmentation bombs for the war effort, and was given several awards for its efficiency and the plant was expanded several times. Thomas Fox joined the company as a vice-president and purchasing agent.

The post-war construction boom allowed Anderson to reap great profits and to plan for growth. The first public stock offering was issued in 1956 and the name was changed to the Anderson Electric Corporation. In 1958 a new plant at 1615 Moore Street Northeast in Leeds was constructed. The company's headquarters office moved to that site in the early 1960s, and also constructed warehouses in Dallas, Texas; Los Angeles, California; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and San Fransico, California.

Fox succeeded Schuler as CEO in 1966, but died less than a year later. Schuler's son John, an executive vice-president, assumed the role of CEO.

Seeking to secure its input stream, Anderson founded National Metal, Inc., an aluminum recycler, in 1966. The company also diversified into machinery for shrink-film packaging. In the late 1960s it acquired packaged substation builder H. J. Clark Company and electrical service supplier Bodendienk Tool Company. It also built a ductile iron plant in Clanton and began pursuing licensing of its equipment patents in Europe and Asia.

The company was acquired by Hubbell Power Systems in 1996.

References

  • Schuler, John Hamilton (1970) The Anderson Story: A Profile of Growth. New York, New York: The Newcomen Society