Marshall Wells Hdwe. Co.
Duluth, Minnesota
1884-1960

Tool Types

Adzes, axes, bevels, braces, edge tools, farm tools, knives, planes, rules

Directory of American Toolmakers Information

This company began as a hardware store and progressed to making and marking its own tools. Most marked tools are from after 1900.

Identifying Marks

M.W. CO.; M.W.H. CO.; MARSHALL WELLS HARDWARE CO.; ZENITH; MARSWELLS; HARTFORD; SUPERIOR; NORTHERN KING; DEFIANCE; VICTOR; FOUR-SQUARE; TWO-TONE; HANDYMAN

General Information
 
The catalog notes that their tools use Swedish pig iron and blister steel. They state their alloys include the use of vanadium, tungsten, chromium and nickel.

According to Steve Crow, Olympia WA, member M-WTCA and PNTC:
Hi, Marshall Wells Hardware Company was started in 1892 when A.M. Marshall bought controlling interest in Chapin Wells Hardware company in Duluth. He changed the name from the Chapin Wells Hardware Company to the Marshall Wells Hardware Company. I have the 20th anniversary issue of the Zenith magazine [1912] giving the 20 year history of the company. Sometime late in 1916 or early 1917 the the name was changed to just the Marshall Wells Company and the hardware part was dropped. I have a May 1917 Zenith magazine in which it states that the May 1917 cover which has the Marshall Wells Hardware Company name on the magazine cover was designed before the name change. The USA part of the company was sold and liquidated about 1958.
The PBS station in Duluth also has a DVD available on the story of the Marshall Wells story.

Photographs



References

Nelson, Robert E., Ed. (1999). Directory of American Toolmakers: A listing of identified makers of tools who worked in Canada and the United States before 1900. Early American Industries Association.

Marshall-Wells Hdwe. Co. (circa 1910). Zenith Tools and Cutlery. Facsimile of the original. The special Publications Committee, Mid-West Tool Collectors Association.

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