Whitman & Barnes

Whitman & Barnes (Akron, OH) ​- The 10/3/1877 edition of The Summit County Beacon (Akron, OH) announces the merger between the Whitman & Miles Manufacturing Company of Fitchburg, MA and the George Barnes & Co. of Syracuse, NY.  Key individuals named in the announcement are George and James Barnes, and W. H. Gifford of Syracuse, Joel Thayer of Skanesteles, NY, A. Whitman of Fitchburg, MA, and A. L. Conger and George W. Crouse (See Akron Tool Company) of Akron, OH.  Officers noted are A. Whitman - Pres., A. L. Conger - VP, George Barnes - Treas., I. C. Alden - Asst. Treas., George E. Dana - Sec.  The announcement further notes that the Fitchburg location will be closed, and the company will operate out of Syracuse and Akron.  Perhaps foretelling the merger is the passing of CAPT. E. T. Miles on 6/26/1876.  Mr. Miles was President of Whitman & Miles, which included the Akron Knife Works at that time.  According to Fifty Years and Over of Akron & Summit County, in the biography of Arthur Latham Conger, Whitman & Miles established the Knife Works at Akron in 1868.  This document was published in 1892 and identifies A. L. Conger as President of Whitman & Barnes at that time.  Please use the link to discover multiple companies in the Akron area where COL. Conger held officer positions at the time.

Whitman & Miles Manufacturing - According to this 1864 MA Act, the company was incorporated on 5/13/1864 in Fitchburg, MA.  Incorporators noted were August Whitman, Eugene T. Miles, Lowell M. Miles, and Jarod Whitman Jr.  According to the June 24, 1920 edition of Iron Age, this company has it's roots in an 1846 partnership between Augustus Whitman and Alfred G. Page who operated as Page, Whitman & Co.  The broader context of the above Iron Age article is the recent consolidation of Whitman & Barnes and J. H. Williams.


Whitman & Barnes produced all kinds of tools and equipment for the modern farm around the turn of the 20th century. According to the Davistown Museum, W&B was in business from 1848-1915.

Trade Names, Brands & Trademarks

Here is the full text of the first 100 year history of the company.

Image Description: 

This is an example of an "S" wrench which was a popular style in the early 20th century. It is unplated steel and very well made.