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Leadizing Company



The Leadizing Company headquarters were located at the Railway Exchange Building, Chicago, Illinois. It was established upon Robert J. Shoemaker's invention for lead-plating metal. The company specialized in lead-plating sheet metal, tools, and other industrial equipment. The company conducted its business nationwide. Its process for leadizing metal was patented in the USA, Canada, Britain, Italy, France and Germany.

Robert J. Shoemaker was born in 1884. He was a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. He had a wide experience in the various fields of chemical engineering. He began his career as an assistant engineer for the Santa Fe Railway, Topeka, Kansas, for six years, where he was in charge of chemical testing and engineering research in industrial chemistry.

While Shoemaker was with the Santa Fe Railway he patented and perfected a new process for lead plating sheet metal, wire, boiler tubes, etc., which was used to prevent rust corrosion. This process was applied to approximately two thousand boiler tubes used on several Santa Fe locomotives.

Shoemaker was later employed at the Globe Seamless Tube Co., Milwaukee, WI, where he gained practical experience in the manufacturing of seamless steel tubes. He was in charge of metallurgical work at this plant. After he worked there for one year he left to serve his duty in the U.S. military.

While he was at Globe Seamless Tube company, Shoemaker invented a process for cold drawing seamless steel tubing. This process eliminated pickle-doping and annealing between passes, and also greatly reduced the percentage of breakage and other defects in the tubes.

When Shoemaker returned from the U.S. Military he began to send out letters asking for employment and applications to patent his invention in 1913. After a lot of hard work he was eventually granted a patent for his invention in 1919. He moved from Topeka, Kansas, to Chicago where he began work at the Leadizing Company. He resided at 5215 South Kenwood Avenue, Chicago.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Records of the Leadizing Company

Identifier: 55/34

The Leadizing Company used a process invented by Robert J. Shoemaker for applying an anti-corrosive lead coating to steel pipes and plates. The records of the Company span the period 1913-1933, and include income tax returns; blueprints; correspondence; canceled checks; bank vouchers; and orders, invoices, and shipping memos.

Dates: 1913-1933