Columbian is the most famous name in the history of the vise. Carr & Weld operated a machine shop in Trenton, New Jersey. J Howard Murray bought the shop in 1865. Murray created the Trenton Vise and Tool Works. Hermann Boker bought Trenton Vise from Murray in 1871. Boker sold Trenton brand anvils and vises for many years creating a valuable brand name.
The hardware firm Van Wagoner & Williams acquired Trenton Vise & Tool Works about 1892. Van Wagoner & Williams used Columbia as a brand name for their products. The Columbian Hardware Company succeeded Van Wagoner & Williams in 1901. Boker would sell their product until 1926.
The Columbian brand name was created at this time. The Trenton name was still used in advertising as the company was faced with associating the quality of the old name with the new. Trademarks have to be renewed every 10 years without limit on the number of renewals. Columbian has been renewed by every owner through Warren. Not clear if Wilton renewed the name.
The Consolidated Iron-Steel Manufacturing Company was the owner of Columbian Hardware. They sold the Cleveland, Ohio plant to H F Seymour in 1922. The Columbian Vise and Manufacturing Company was organized in 1926 to take over production of vises and clamps. A new plant was constructed in Cleveland at this time.
The Warren Tool Corporation bought the company in 1967 and Wilton Corporation in 1994.
Return to Home Page