Original Document
Original Document
History of the Coplay Cement Company, Allentown, PA, 1881.

No institution has done more to promote the interests of the Lehigh Valley than that whose name heads this article–The Coplay Cement Company. In 1866 the Company was organized, the object being for the manufacture of hydraulic cement, and works were built a short distance above Coplay, on the line of the Lehigh Valley Railroad. In 1869, they were compelled to enlarge their factory, and since then they have added, year after year, so that they now have one of the largest and most complete establishments of the kind in this country, having a capacity to manufacture one thousand barrels of natural cement per day. The Portland cement, which requires in the production much more milling capacity, is manufactured to the extent of five thousand barrels per month. The power employed consists of one low-pressure compound engine of one hundred and twenty-five horse-power and one high-pressure engine of sixty-five horse-power.  The former is used for driving the machinery to crush, grind, mix and temper the raw material for Portland cement and the other for grinding the burnt clinker and natural cement, as well as for hoisting the stone from the quarry to the kilns and crushers.

The milling capacity consists of four run of four feet and six run of three feet burr-stones; also, three iron crushers to prepare the materia1 for the mill and four tempering machines to temper the raw material for Portland cement. They have eleven kilns to burn Portland and four to burn natural cement. The factory contains over nineteen thousand square feet of floor room for spreading and drying the tempered material for Portland cement. The rooms are all heated by steam, four thousand five hundred feet of one and a-half inch wrought iron pipe and one hundred and sixty feet of six inch cast pipe being used for the purpose. There are also over twenty thousand square feet of floor room for storing the manufactured cement, and about three hundred and seventy-five feet of iron conveyers are in use to convey the cement from the mills to the huge bins.

Adjacent to the works is the quarry, and the deposits of stone seems inexhaustible, the Company owning a farm of twenty-six acre, most of which is underlaid with the stone. In the various departments the company employ about one hundred workmen, including coopers, quarrymen, etc.

To the Coplay Cement Company is due the credit of having first introduced into this country the manufacture of Portland cement on a large scale. Their peculiar advantageous position in having inexhaustible stores of the raw material in its cheapest and simplest conditions, coupled with the advantages of shipment by rail and water, entitles them to supp1y the article in abundance to all parts of the country at a comparatively low price. It is known in the market as "Saylor's Portland Cement," in honor of Mr. D. O. Saylor, the leading member of the company and one who has chiefly been instrumental in establishing the success of the article. The Portland cement is recommended by the most prominent architects and engineers and the trade generally to be fully equal to the best foreign brands. It is of uniform quality and always reliable.

Every carload is carefully tested before shipped and thus the reputation of the cement is sustained. No poor articles are sent out and as a result no complaints as to the merits of the cement are received. Capt. J. B. Eads, the distinguished engineer, who built the great bridge across the Mississippi at St. Louis, use Saylor's Portland Cement exclusively on the jetty works of the Mississippi at New Orleans, having used about 12,000 barrels yp to this time, and recommends it highly. It is used in the river and harbor improvements and fortifications on the South Atlantic coast, fortifications on Staten Island and New York harbor, under the superintendency and management of General Gilmore's direction and Saylor's cement stood among the best. It is used in the departments of public works in New York and Brooklyn and the architect of the U. S. Capitol. At Washington. Mr. Edward Clarke says it is as good as the best English article. Recommendations from other equally distinguished engineers and architects could be quoted, but the above will suffice to show the superiority of the cement.

The natural cement manufactured by this Company is known in the market as "Anchor Cement," and is after a trial of ten years proved itself to be equal, if not superior, to all other natural cements in the country. It was used in the construction of the Girard Avenue and Callowhill street bridges of Philadelphia and in the construction of the tunnel of the Baltimore and Potomac Railroad, at Baltimore, over 26,000 barrels were used.

The Company have a large store house on the dock of the Central Railroad Company of New Jersey at Communipaw, which is in charge of the New York agents, Messrs. Johnson and Wilson, of 91 Liberty street. At the works, the Company have a fine laboratory in the charge of an experienced chemist Mr. John W. Eckert, who is constantly experimenting and analyzing the material.

The head of the enterprise is Mr. D. O. Saylor, President of the Company, a gentleman who has given the production of superior cement close study. He was born near Allentown in 1827, and is now one of the leading citizens of that city. He is a gentleman highly respected and esteemed by all who know him, for his general qualities and upright and honorable life. Independent of this industry, he is extensively engaged in the manufacture of fire-brick in Allentown. The secretary, Mr. E. Rehrig, is one of the originals of the Company and has lent a personal and leading representation to the works of the Company, and of late years has devoted his entire attention to the demands of the work much of which, it indebted for his energetic administration of his department of the works.

Credit: Coplay Cement Company, Manufacturers of Saylor's Portland and Anchor Hydraulic Cements, Office, Allentown, Pa. Works near Coplay, L.V.R.R., 1881.
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