Humphryes 1880s

Humphryes in 1880s in Mansfield.

People who were working in Mansfield during the big industrial boom of the 1950s often talk about the abundance of employment opportunities at the time by saying that a worker could walk out of one factory job and walk across the street to get hired on the spot at a new job.

One of the places where this was literally true was Humphryes. It was packed into the Flats shoehorned in between Westinghouse and Tappan, and it was a very short walk from door to door.

Humphryes Manufacturing Co. began their foundry business in 1882, and served as an anchor of Mansfield’s industrial strength for decades making pumps and then cast iron bathtubs and sinks.

In the 1950s they consolidated with Borg-Warner and expanded their product lines to include vitreous china; and expanded their industrial sites to include West Fourth Street and Shelby.

They ran full bore until 1973 when the foundry went cold.

Humphryes became Braintree

This familiar corner at Fifth and Newman was the Humphryes main office; today Braintree Business Development Center.

A few of the Humphryes buildings survive today, one of which is the Braintree Business Development Center.

Even though their factories are long gone, Humphryes still casts a shadow in the Flats: from the landmark smokestack that even yet anchors the former factory district.

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Timothy Brian McKee is a featured columnist on our site every Saturday with a column titled Native SonEvery Tuesday, he taps into his knowledge and collection of historical photos and bring us Then & Now, a brief glance at the way things were.