A Guide to the American Hardware Corporation Records, undated, 1859-1953

A Guide to the American Hardware Corporation Records

Summary Information

Title
A Guide to the American Hardware Corporation Records
Creator
American Hardware Corporation.
Inclusive Dates
undated, 1859-1953
Extent
580.0 Linear feet
Abstract
The records consist of financial records associated with the American Hardware Corporation of New Britain, Connecticut, its predecessor companies P. & F. Corbin and Russell & Erwin Manufacturing Company, and divisions Corbin Cabinet Lock Company and Corbin Screw Corporation.
Call Number
1995.0013
Language
English
Finding Aid Prepared By
Finding aid prepared by Laura Smith. (July 2003)
Repository
University of Connecticut Libraries 405 Babbidge Road Unit 1205 Storrs, Connecticut, 06269-1205 860.486.2524 archives@uconn.edu

Preferred Citation

[Item description, #:#], American Hardware Corporation Records.  Archives & Special Collections at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center,  University of Connecticut Libraries.

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Access and Use

Acquisition Information

The records were donated by the New Britain Industrial Museum in 1995.

Access Restrictions

The collection is open and available for research.

Preferred Citation

[Item description, #:#], American Hardware Corporation Records.  Archives & Special Collections at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center,  University of Connecticut Libraries.

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • P. & F. Corbin (Firm : New Britain, Conn.).

Genre(s)

  • Administrative records
  • Financial Records

Geographic Name(s)

  • Connecticut
  • New Britain (Conn.)

Subject(s)

  • Hardware industry

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History

New Britain, Connecticut, established its dominance as the center of American hardware manufacturing as early as the late 1700s. Blacksmith shops provided a multitude of goods, including nails, hinges, locks and keys that were distributed by traveling peddlars to the farms and small towns of early America. By the mid-1800s entrepreneurs formed factories to better produce goods that were in increased demand.

The Russell & Erwin Manufacturing Company originated in 1839 when  H.E. Russell,  Cornelius B. Erwin, and  Frederick T. Stanley formed a partnership to produce locks and builders' hardware, under the name of  Stanley, Russell & Company. When Mr. Stanley withdrew from the partnership in 1840,  Smith Matteson and  John H. Bowen were added, changing the name of the company to  Matteson, Russell & Company. In 1846, with the death of Mr. Matteson and the expiration of the partnership terms, the company's name changed to  Russell & Erwin. In 1851 the partnership was reorganized as a joint stock company and was from that time known as  Russell & Erwin Manufacturing Company, until its merger with  P.& F. Corbin in 1902.  Cornelius Erwin served as president of the company from 1851 until his death in 1885. The company is best known as the pioneer of the wrought steel lock industry.

P. & F. Corbin originated in 1849 when brothers Philip and  Frank Corbin, and  Edward Doen established the firm of  Doen, Corbin & Co., to manufacture ox balls. The company's name changed to  P. & F. Corbin in 1851. In the last half of the 19th century they broadened their products to include coffin trimmings, knobs, and stove handles. In 1868 they began specializing in the manufacture of builder's hardware and locks.

The American Hardware Corporation was formed in 1902 as a holding company through the merger of the  Russell & Erwin Manufacturing Company and  P. & F. Corbin, which were at that time separate and independent and rivals in the market for builders' hardware. At the time of the merger the two companies produced nearly one-half of the total hardware of this type in the United States. The two merged companies remained as distinct divisions of  American Hardware Corporation and two other divisions -  Corbin Cabinet Lock Company and the  Corbin Screw Corporation - were added later.

Philip Corbin, president of  P.& F. Corbin, served as  American Hardware Corporation's first president until his death in 1910.  Charles M. Jarvis served from 1910 to 1913, succeeded by  Henry C.M. Thomson. In 1924 Mr. Thomson was succeeded by  George T. Kimball.

Corbin Screw Corporation, a unit of the  American Hardware Corporation, was formed in 1903 from the merger of the screw divisions of  P. & F. Corbin and  Russell & Erwin Manufacturing Company. It specialized in machine and other types of screws, bolts, chains, and escrutcheon pins.

Corbin Cabinet Lock Company was established in 1882 as a unit of  P. & F. Corbin and became a division of the  American Hardware Corporation in 1905. It produced cabinet hardware, padlocks, trunk locks, mail boxes, post office lock boxes, house letter boxes, straps, and brackets.

During both World Wars the companies manufactured such items as gun parts and hand grenades. In 1950 they employed 4,200 persons and occupied 2,255,912 square feet of floor space in three factories in New Britain.

In 1964 American Hardware was bought out by Emhart Corporation and in 1970 a new plant was built in Berlin. In 1989 Emhart was taken over by  Black & Decker. Today,  Corbin Russwin Architectural Hardware in  Berlin, Connecticut, manufactures padlocks and is owned by a Swiss concern, which also owns  Sargent Lock Company in  New Haven, Connecticut.

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Scope and Content

The collection consists exclusively of 577 volumes and one box of payroll lists and financial ledgers and journals relating to American Hardware Corporation and the predecessors and divisions associated with it, including  Corbin Cabinet Lock Company,  Russell & Erwin Manufacturing Company,  Corbin Screw Corporation, and  P.& F. Corbin.

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Related Materials

Separated Material

906 financial ledgers were removed from the collection in August 2003. The ledgers consisted of financial records of American Hardware Corporation and its predecessor companies:  P. & F. Corbin,  Russel & Erwin Manufacturing Company,  Corbin Cabinet Lock Company and  Corbin Screw Corporation. These items were removed only after each volume was evaluated to determine whether its content justified the cost and labor of retention. All of the materials removed were solely "books of numbers", with virtually no historical information about the companies.

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Collection Inventory

Series I: American Hardware Corporation, 1889-1953 

Box

Ledger, 1936 

129

Journal, 1892-1898 

130

Journal, 1933-1935 

131

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1895-1900 

132

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1912-1913 

133

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1912-1914 

134

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1912-1915 

135

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1912-1943 

136

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1914-1916 

137

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1917-1918 

138

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1919-1920 

139

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1921-1926 

140

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1927-1934 

141

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1933-1936 

142

Sub-ledger/Journal, 1935-1936 

143

Credit journal, New York, 1932-1935 

144

Miscellaneous sales, 1935 

145

Raw material ledger, 1951 

146

Third Liberty Bond book, 1918-1919 

147

Fourth Liberty Bond book, 1919 

148

Returned goods, 1930-1934 

149

Letters, 1901-1904 

150

Health Care Manual, undated 

151

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Series II: Corbin Cabinet Lock Company, 1882-1939 

Box

Payroll, 1891-1893 

152

Payroll, 1901-1902 

153

Payroll, 1903 

154

Payroll, 1905 

155

Payroll, 1906 

156

Payroll, 1907 

157

Payroll, 1907 

158

Payroll, 1908 

159

Payroll, 1908 

160

Payroll, 1910 

161

Payroll, 1910 

162

Payroll, 1910 

163

Payroll, 1912 

164

Payroll, 1912 

165

Payroll, 1912 

166

Payroll, 1912 

167

Payroll, 1912 

168

Payroll, 1912 

169

Payroll, 1912 

170

Payroll, 1912 

171

Payroll, 1913 

172

Payroll, 1914 

173

Payroll, 1914 

174

Payroll, 1914 

175

Payroll, 1914 

176

Payroll, 1914 

177

Payroll, 1914 

178

Payroll, 1914 

179

Office payroll, 1915-1916 

180

Payroll, 1916 

181

Payroll, 1916 

182

Payroll, 1916 

183

Payroll, 1916 

184

Payroll, 1916 

185

Payroll, 1916 

186

Payroll, 1916 

187

Payroll, 1916 

188

Payroll, 1918 

189

Payroll, 1918 

190

Payroll, 1918 

191

Payroll, 1918 

192

Payroll, 1918 

193

Payroll, 1918 

194

Payroll, 1918 

195

Payroll, 1920 

196

Payroll, 1920 

197

Payroll, 1920 

198

Payroll, 1920 

199

Payroll, 1920 

200

Payroll, 1920 

201

Payroll, 1920 

202

Payroll, 1921 

203

Cashbook, 1888-1889 

204

Cashbook, 1889 

205

Cashbook, 1895-1897 

206

Cashbook, 1896 

207

Cashbook, 1897 

208

Cashbook, 1900 

209

Cashbook, 1900 

210

Cashbook, 1902 

211

Cashbook, 1904 

212

Cashbook, 1904 

213

Cashbook, 1908 

214

Cashbook, 1912 

215

Cashbook, 1914 

216

Cashbook, 1916 

217

Cashbook, 1918 

218

Cashbook, 1920-1921 

219

Cashbook, 1922-1923 

220

Cashbook, 1926-1927 

221

Cashbook, 1930-1931 

222

Cashbook, 1932-1934 

223

Cashbook, 1935 

224

Cashbook, New York 1899 

225

Petty cash, 1912-1917 

226

Petty cash, 1918 

227

Accounts payable, 1934-1935 

228

Bill book, 1899-1901 

229

Bill book, 1902-1904 

230

Bill book, 1905-1907 

231

Bill book, 1906-1909 

232

Bill book, 1911-1914 

233

Purchase ledger, 1890 

234

Purchase ledger, 1894 

235

Purchase ledger, 1898 

236

Purchase ledger, 1899 

237

Purchase ledger, 1900 

238

Purchase ledger, 1902 

239

Purchase ledger, 1904 

240

Purchase ledger, 1906 

241

Purchase ledger, 1910 

242

Purchase ledger, 1912 

243

Purchase ledger, 1914 

244

Debit/credit journal, 1893-1894 

245

Debit/credit journal, 1895 

246

Debit/credit journal, 1896 

247

Debit/credit journal, 1897 

248

Debit/credit journal, 1897 

249

Debit/credit journal, 1898 

250

Debit/credit journal, 1898 

251

Debit/credit journal, 1900 

252

Debit/credit journal, 1902 

253

Debit/credit journal, 1902 

254

Debit/credit journal, 1902 

255

Debit/credit journal, 1904 

256

Debit/credit journal, 1904 

257

Debit/credit journal, 1906 

258

Debit/credit journal, 1908 

259

Debit/credit journal, 1910 

260

Debit/credit journal, 1912 

261

Debit/credit journal, 1915-1924 

262

Debit/credit journal, 1932-1934 

263

New York credit journal, 1936-1939 

264

Chicago credit journal, 1936-1939 

265

Credits, 1935-1936 

266

Credit memoranda, 1936-1937 

267

Accounts payable, 1931-1933 

268

Trial balance, 1908-1909 

269

Sales book, 1888-1890 

270

Sales book, 1890-1895 

271

Proof book, sales ledger, 1892 

272

Sales records, 1888-1932 

273

Monthly statements, 1890 

274

Monthly statements, 1894 

275

Monthly statements, 1895 

276

Monthly statements, 1896 

277

Monthly statements, 1900-1903 

278

Monthly statements, 1900-1903 

279

Monthly statements, 1915 

280

Ledger, 1882-1892 

280a

Ledger, 1889 

280b

Ledger, 1896-1897 

280c

General ledger, 1897 

281

Ledger, 1898-1891 

282

General ledger, 1899 

283

General ledger, 1900 

284

General ledger, 1904 

285

General ledger, 1906 

286

General ledger, 1908 

287

General ledger, 1910 

288

General ledger, 1911-1912 

289

Journal, 1912-1914 

290

General ledger, 1914 

291

Journal, 1914 

292

Journal, 1915-1916 

293

General ledger, 1916 

294

General ledger, 1918 

295

General ledger, 1920 

296

General ledger, 1922-1930 

297

Journal, 1923-1934 

298

General ledger, 1924 

299

Journal, 1924-1928 

300

Ledger, 1924-1929 

300a

General ledger, 1930 

301

General ledger, 1932 

302

General ledger, 1934 

303

Export journal, 1917-1926 

304

Export journal, 1933-1935 

305

Allowances/distribution, 1931-1932 

306

Checks, 1890-1892 

307

Checkbook, 1909 

308

Post office reports, 1903-1907 

309

List of customers, 1897 

310

List of customers, 1897 

311

Tools, fixtures, machinery, merchandise, 1895 

312

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Series III: Russell & Erwin Manufacturing Company, 1864-1935 

Box

Cashbook, 1864-1868 

313

Cashbook, 1880-1883 

314

New York cash receipts, 1923-1929 

315

New York cash receipts, 1930-1932 

316

Cash receipts, 1920-1922 

317

Cash receipts, 1922-1926 

318

Cash receipts, 1927 

319

Cash receipts, 1928-1930 

320

Cash receipts, 1931 

321

Cash receipts, 1932-1934 

322

Cash receipts, 1933 

323

Cash disbursements, 1921-1926 

324

Cash disbursements, 1921-1929 

325

Cash disbursements, 1928-1931 

326

Cash disbursements, 1932-1934 

327

Cash disbursements, 1935 

328

Cash disbursements, 1935 

329

Petty cash, 1908-1925 

330

Transfer petty cash, 1925-1933 

331

Notes and bills receivable, 1914-1932 

332

Return purchase, 1932-1934 

333

Accounts payable, 1927 

334

Accounts payable, 1928 

335

Accounts payable (New York), 1929 

336

Accounts payable, 1930 

337

Accounts payable, 1930 

338

Accounts payable, 1931 

339

Accounts payable, 1935 

340

Trial balance, 1903 

341

Trial balance (New York), 1921-1925 

342

New York approved vouchers, 1910-1913 

343

New York approved vouchers, 1920 

344

Return sales, 1898-1899 

345

Daybook, 1891-1893 

346

Daybook, 1893-1895 

347

Daybook, 1896-1897 

348

Invoice book, 1898-1899 

349

Invoice book, 1900 

350

Invoice book, 1903-1905 

351

Invoice book, 1906-1908 

352

Receipts, 1927 

353

General ledger, 1898-1902 

354

General ledger, 1923-1926 

355

General ledger, 1934 

356

General ledger, 1935 

357

New Britain general ledger, 1932 

358

New York general ledger, 1933 

359

Ledger, 1918-1921 

360

Ledger, 1927-1930 

361

Journal, 1888-1891 

362

Journal, 1891-1893 

363

Journal, 1895-1896 

364

New Britain journal, 1915-1917 

365

New York journal, 1915-1917 

366

C.O.D. register, 1935 

367

Freight record, 1932-1934 

368

Returns/allowances, 1900-1901 

370

New York stock, 1930-1935 

371

Factory rebates, 1903 

372

Distribution, 1931 

373

"Working sheets" (financial summaries), 1921-1935 

535

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Series IV: Corbin Screw Corporation, 1903-1935 

Box

Cash received, 1924-1927 

374

Cashbook, 1914-1920 

375

Cash paid, 1914-1923 

376

Cash paid, 1924-1933 

377

Chicago cashbook, 1913 

378

New York cashbook, 1929-1933 

379

Philadelphia cashbook, 1921-1933 

380

Purchase ledger, 1903 

381

Purchase ledger, 1932 

382

New York credit journal, 1913-1915 

383

Credit journal, 1929-1934 

384

Philadelphia credit, 1921-1934 

385

Credit book, 1934-1935 

386

Chicago credit journal, 1913-1915 

387

New York debit/credit journal, 1914-1924 

388

General ledger, 1912-1913 

389

General ledger, 1913-1925 

390

General ledger, 1925-1933 

391

Philadelphia general ledger, 1921-1934 

392

Accounts payable, 1933-1934 

393

Accounts payable, 1935 

394

New York trial balance, 1914-1930 

395

Trial balance, 1916 

396

Trial balance, 1928-1935 

397

Bill book, 1918-1935 

398

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Series V: P. & F. Corbin, 1859-1944 

Box

Payroll, 1871-1872 

399

Payroll, 1881-1883 

400

Payroll, 1888-1889 

401

Payroll, 1890-1891 

402

Payroll, 1891 

403

Payroll, 1892-1893 

404

Payroll, 1893-1894 

405

Payroll, 1894-1895 

406

Payroll, 1895-1896 

407

Payroll, 1896-1897 

408

Payroll, 1897-1898 

409

Payroll, 1898-1899 

410

Payroll, 1900 

411

Payroll, 1901 

412

Payroll, 1901-1902 

413

Payroll, 1902-1903 

414

Payroll, 1903 

415

Payroll, 1903 

416

Payroll, 1904 

417

Payroll, 1904 

418

Payroll, 1905 

419

Payroll, 1905 

420

Payroll, 1905 

421

Payroll, 1905 

422

Payroll, 1906 

423

Payroll, 1906 

424

Payroll, 1906 

425

Payroll, 1906 

426

Payroll, 1907 

427

Payroll, 1907 

428

Payroll, 1907 

429

Payroll, 1907 

430

Payroll, 1908 

431

Payroll, 1908 

432

Payroll, 1908 

433

Payroll, 1908 

434

Payroll, 1909 

435

Payroll, 1909 

436

Payroll, 1909 

437

Payroll, 1909 

438

Payroll, 1910 

439

Payroll, 1910 

440

Payroll, 1910 

441

Payroll, 1911 

442

Payroll, 1911 

443

Payroll, 1911 

444

Payroll, 1912 

445

Payroll, 1912 

446

Payroll, 1912 

447

Payroll, 1912 

448

Payroll lists, 1912 

534:2

Payroll, 1913 

449

Payroll, 1913 

450

Payroll, 1913 

451

Payroll, 1914 

452

Payroll, 1914 

453

Payroll, 1914 

454

Payroll, 1914 

455

Payroll, 1914 

456

Payroll, 1914 

457

Payroll, 1914 

458

Payroll, New York, 1917 

459

Office payroll, 1908 

460

Office payroll, 1909 

461

Office payroll, 1910 

462

Office payroll, 1911 

463

Office payroll, 1912 

464

Office payroll, 1913 

465

Office payroll, 1914 

466

Office payroll, 1915 

467

Office payroll, 1916 

468

Office payroll, 1917 

469

Office payroll, 1918 

470

Office payroll, 1919 

471

Office payroll, 1920 

472

Office payroll, 1921 

473

Office payroll, 1922 

474

Office payroll, 1923 

475

Office payroll, 1924 

476

Office payroll, 1925 

477

Office payroll, 1926 

478

Office payroll, 1927 

479

Office payroll, 1928 

480

Office payroll, 1929-1934 

481

Office payroll, Philadelphia and New York, 1920 

482

Office payroll, Philadelphia and New York, 1921 

483

Office payroll, Philadelphia and New York, 1922 

484

Office payroll, Philadelphia and New York, 1923 

485

Office payroll, Philadelphia and New York, 1925 

486

Office payroll, Philadelphia and New York, 1926 

487

Office payroll, Philadelphia and New York, 1927 

488

Office payroll, Philadelphia and New York, 1928 

489

General index, 1915 

490

General ledger index, 1918-1920 

491

Cashbook, 1859-1863 

492

Cashbook, 1864-1865 

493

Cash accounts, 1866-1870 

494

Cashbook, 1876-1878 

495

General cash (with labor information), 1877 

496

Cashbook, 1895 

497

Cashbook, 1900 

498

Cash, 1903 

499

Cashbook, 1907 

500

Cashbook, 1908 

501

Cashbook, 1911 

502

Cashbook, 1913 

503

Cashbook, 1915 

504

Cashbook, 1917 

505

Cashbook, 1919 

506

Cashbook, 1920 

507

Cash, 1930-1933 

508

Cashbook, 1932 

509

Cashbook, 1934 

510

Purchase ledger, 1892 

513

Purchase ledger, 1899 

514

Purchase ledger, 1901 

515

Purchase ledger, 1912 

516

Purchase ledger, 1914 

517

Purchase ledger, 1916 

518

Purchase voucher register, 1921-1922 

519

Purchase voucher register, 1924 

520

Purchase voucher register, 1925 

521

Purchase voucher register, 1925 

522

Expense book of company executives, undated 

523

Credit journal, 1911-1913 

524

Credit journal, 1914 

525

Credit journal, 1915 

526

Credit journal, 1917-1919 

527

Credit journal, 1928-1929 

528

Credit journal, 1929-1930 

529

Purchase voucher register, 1932-1933 

530

Payables, 1930-1935 

531

Accounts payable, 1932 

532

Accounts payable, 1935 

533

List of employees who purchased liberty bonds, 1917 

534:1

Trial/balance, 1908-1910 

536

Trial/balance (stock), 1921-1925 

537

Trial/balance, 1925-1932 

538

Sales book no. 5, 1866-1868 

539

Sales book, 1868-1869 

540

Sales book, 1869-1870 

541

Sales book, 1874 

542

Daybook and journal, 1862-1865 

543

Daybook and journal no. 8, 1872-1874 

544

Daybook and journal, 1874-1876 

545

Daybook and journal, 1877-1878 

546

Daybook and journal, 1881-1886 

547

Daybook and journal, 1862-1865 

548

Notes receivable, 1913 

549

Notes receivable, 1921 

550

Notes receivable, 1927-1931 

551

Ledger, 1859-1865 

552

Ledger, 1866-1871 

553

Ledger, 1885-1887 

554

General ledger, 1914 

555

General ledger, 1915 

556

General ledger, 1916 

557

General ledger, 1917 

558

General ledger, 1918 

559

General ledger, 1919 

560

General ledger, 1920 

561

General ledger, 1925 

562

General ledger, 1931-1932 

563

Journal, 1896 

564

Journal, 1901 

565

Journal, 1908 

566

Journal, 1910 

567

Journal, 1918 

568

Journal, 1918-1927 

569

Petty cash, 1867-1869 

511

Petty cash, 1869-1871 

512

Petty cash, 1917-1919 

570

Private ledger, 1907 

571

Parcel post, 1936-1937 

572

U.S. War Savings Bonds register, 1942-1944 

573

Proof book, 1927-1934 

574

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