News / 3.24.16

Throwback Thursday – Sperry & Hutchinson

Facility featured ‘towveyors’ which are in-floor ‘rail line’ conveyors used for moving product

For this week's Throwback Thursday we take a trip to Sharonville, Ohio back in November, 1960 for the opening of Sperry & Hutchinson's 165,000 square foot regional office and distribution center. Located in a suburb just outside of Cincinnati at 3003 E. Kemper Drive, this facility featured a product assembly and shipping area that included 'towveyors' which are in-floor 'rail line' conveyors used for moving materials throughout manufacturing/assembly operations like this one for Sperry & Hutchinson.

This S&H building also included a data relay (computer) room used for processing/tracking shipments and orders and the production/shipping floor featured a 30-foot clear height, allowing for ample storage of S&H's product. Additionally, Epstein designed and engineered this building to serve as S&H main product supply area for a Five-state region.

For those of you curious - Sperry & Hutchinson produced their popular 'Green Shield Stamps' from the 1930s through the late 80s. They were distributed as part of a rewards program (for you 'yungins' – think old school Groupon) operated by the S&H, which was founded in 1896 by Thomas Sperry and Shelley Byron Hutchinson. During the 1960s, the rewards catalog printed by the company was the largest publication in the US and the company issued three times as many stamps as the US Postal Service - take that Amazon! Customers would receive stamps at the checkout counter of supermarkets, department stores, and gas stations among other retailers, which could be redeemed for products in the catalog. And then shipped to customers from distribution centers like this Sharonville facility.

Lastly, this facility still is in operation, although not as an S&H facility. (S&H, more or less, went out of business in 90s) Currently, Spartan Logistics calls this facility their home and they lease space out to companies that need distribution space in the greater Cincinnati area. From views on Google Earth, this grand example of Epstein's late 50s/early 60s industrial modernism is still intact, including the unique steel beams protruding out of the entrance façade.