The Vandegrift Manufacturing Company sold adjustable wrenches from 1891 to 1908. Theodore F Vandegrift acquired patent number 444,171 for a wedge wrench in 1891. Then patent number 589,765 in 1897 for an agricultural style wrench. This pattern would be used in tool kits for International Harvester Tractors. At first, the wrenches were referred to as nut wrenches, then as screw wrenches. The wrenches were sold by Maltby-Henley until that hardware firm was acquired by Smith & Hemenway in 1899. Smith & Hemenway was officially appointed sales agent in 1903. The wrenches were sold under the “Special” brand.
The company was valued over 2 million dollars before being destroyed by fire in 1904. The Vandegrift-Conger wrench company was established in 1905 and began building a factory. The Vandegrift garage was built in 1905 to service automobiles. Advertising continued until Theodore’s death in late 1908 or early 1909.
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