Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Gendron Iron Wheel Company

Here's an old advertising trade card for the Gendron Iron Wheel Company in Toledo, Ohio. The card was designed by lithographers Henderson-Achert of Cincinnati, circa 1880s.

The front of the card features the Gendron Iron Wagon and touts the product with the statement: "The Gendron Iron Wagon has no wooden bolsters and will stand the hardest usage." The back of the card makes the claim that the company is the largest manufacturer of children's vehicles in the world, including high grade safety bicycles.

The company still exists today as Gendron Inc., having evolved to specialize in products for bariatric patient care, including manual and power wheelchairs, as well as custom built power wheelchairs, and much more.

I came across an early predecessor of Gendron's wheelchairs on a blog about vintage bicycles. In particular, there is a post about Gendron Wheel Co.'s bicycles and the Invalid Wheelchair. Included is a picture of the wheelchair as well as images of trade cards for their bicycles. So the company's product line today does have deep roots in the company's history.

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