Atha Tool Company


This is the information the Davistown Museum has on their website:

Tool Types Blacksmithing tools, hammers, railroad tools, stoneworking tools, especially noted for farrier tools and mining tools DATM Information There is some contradiction concerning the ontogeny of this particular company--contention exists concerning whether or not it was formerly Newark Steel Works. Benjamin Atha, who was part of the Newark Steel Works, incorporated the company in 1891. It may have been established as early as 1875. They bought out Emmett Hammer Co. in 1884, Hartford Hammer Co. in 1892, Eyeless Tool Co. in 1897, Clark Edge Tool Works in 1897, Buffalo Hammer Co. in 1898, and Yerkes Tool Co. in 1898. Finally, in 1913, Stanley Rule & Level Co. in 1913 bought them out. Identifying Marks ATHA TOOL CO.; ATHA TOOL CO. (in a horseshoe figure with an A in the center), A.T.CO. General Information Stanley Rule & Level Co. retained the classic "horseshoe" logo after incorporating Atha Tool Co. on some of their products. Photographs References Nelson, Robert E., Ed. (1999). Directory of American Toolmakers: A listing of identified makers of tools who worked in Canada and the United States before 1900. Early American Industries Association.

ToolArchives Research

The biography of Benjamin Atha can be found on, in the text of Scannell's New Jersey's First Citizen's and State Guide, Volume 2, ca. 1920.

BENJAMIN ATHA Newark, (750 High St.) Banker. Born
Liberty, N. Y., January 5, 1844 ; son of Andrew Atha and Henrietta (Armitage) Atha married at Newark, May 15, 1867, to Sarah A. Guruey, daughter of Henry G. Guerney, of England.

Children: Henry G., Herbert B., Albert H., Charles G., and Louis M.

Benjamin Atha's fore-bears came from England to this country in 1842. His father, Andrew Atha, was of the firm of Prentice Atha & Co., organized in 1864. The firm established itself at Newark, and afterwards moved to Harrison, and quickly grew into prominence among the industries of the country. The plant was extended for a constantly increasing business that made its product known in the markets of the world. Andrew Atha, during Civil War times, devoted a considerable part of his
fortune to the comfort of the soldiers serving in the field of the Union ranks ; and he gave rent free to the families of all tenants whose sons or husbands or other wage earners had enlisted.

Benjamin Atha was educated in private schools and assisted in the conduct of his father's steel business. In 1871 the firm name was changed to Benjamin Atha & Company and so remained until 1898. Then John Illingworth was taken into the business, and it was reorganized as the Benjamin Atha & Illingworth Company. In 1900 the company was absorbed by the Crucible Steel Company, and the works at Harrison constitute one of the most important establishments of that great producing corporation.

Andrew Atha was one of the original in corpora tors of the Essex County Bank. When he died in 1875, Benjamin Atha was chosen to succeed him in the bank's Board of Directors. In October of 1906. he was elected President of the bank, and continued in that relation till the opening of July, 1910. when he asked to be relieved. The Board of Directors, granting the request of course, conferred the title of Honorary Vice President upon him.

Mr. Atha is a member of the Union League Club, New York, the Essex Club, Newark, the Essex County Country Club, and the Baltusrol Golf Club.

An article in the 2/2/1877 edition of The Philadelphia Inquirer (**Account Required**) notes the acquisition of Voose, Dinsmore & Co. by Benjamin Atha.

An article from The Times (Philadelphia) on 9/5/1879 (**Account Required**) presents a review of a meeting of the Merchant Steel Manufacturers.  Benjamin Atha, of Benjamin Atha & Co. of Newark is listed as an attendee.

This article from the 11/28/1881 edition of The New York Times notes that Atha is head of the Newark Steel Works Co. and Atha & Hughes (enameled cloth manufacturers).

The 1/19/1884 edition of The New York Tribune reports on a fire that destroyed the "hammer shop connected to the steel works of the Benjamin Atha & Co. in Chapel St., Newark."

The 5/1/1888 edition of The Sun (New York) announces the dissolution of the Benjamin Atha & Co. due to a disagreement between Mr. Atha and his partner Mr. John Illingsworth.  This disagreement appears to come out of a dispute over a patent for casting steel ingots.

The 5/10/1888 edition of The Sun (NY, NY) (**Account Required**) announces the organization and incorporation of Benjamin Atha & Co. by Benjamin Atha.  Partners include John H. and Robert F. Ballantine (Brewers), William Clark (thread manufacturer), and George H. Hughes who is a partner in Atha's enameled cloth business.  It also notes that The Atha Tool Co. was established on 5/9/1888 in conjunction.  The article further notes that Mr. Atha bought out Mr. Illingsworth but that Mr. Illingsworth intends to form his own company of equal size.

On 7/7/1892, The Pittsburgh Dispatch (**Account Required**) reports that the Benjamin Atha & Co. and the John Illingsworth & Co. have consolidated forming the Benjamin Atha & Illingsworth Co.  John Illingsworth is President.

On 4/28/1899, Mr. Illingsworth retired and sold his interest in the company to Mr. Atha.

Most sources say that the Atha Tool Co. was purchased by Stanley Rule & Level in 1913 but we have thus far been unable to verify via contemporary means.

The obituary of Henry G. Atha notes that the Atha Steel Works and Tool Company (run by Henry G.) were sold to Crucible Steel Company at some point prior to 1943.