Webster City Felt Shoe Factory Starts

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The Fort Dodge Messenger: Sept. 22, 1903

Webster City Felt Shoe Factory Starts

After an Idleness of Three Months Caused by the Late Fire.

Thirty Hands are at Work

Capacity of the Factory is Six Hundred Pairs Shoes Per Day.

Webster City, Sept. 22. – After having been idle for a period of more than three months, the Northwestern Felt Shoe company’s plant resumed operations Monday in the old wholesale grocery building. The full force is not yet at work, as there is not enough material on hand, but it is expected that within ten days there will be thirty hands working.

The company has a large lot of orders ahead. There are now three traveling men on the road, Messrs. Kelly, Derr and Porter. The capacity of the new plant is 600 pairs per day, but Manager Coppenall says that they do not expect to run over 300 pairs per day this fall. He also says on account of the larger number of orders ahead it is likely that the plant will run until about the first of December. It is customary to close plants of this kind fully a month earlier than this.

The new company is nicely situated. At present it occupies only the second floor of the wholesale grocery building with an office down stairs. With the expansion which will be made in the spring, the company will occupy the whole of the building. F.S. Currie is in charge of the office, while Mr. Coppenall is managing the plant. The felt now being used in the shoes is all new goods. There was no felt saved from the fire which destroyed the former plant of the company. It is the purpose to work the new plant up to the full efficiency of the former factory.

The cutters, lasters and fitters began Monday morning and will get the raw material in shape for the full force within ten days. However, all the machinery is not in operation.

(Editor’s note: The fire occurred on June 16, 1903, and there was a problem with the former manager on Sept. 14, 1903.)

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