acumen 3.0ɑ
A. S. Williams III Americana Manuscript Collections

Guide to the Woodward Iron Company records W.0061

ASSET VIEWER
Publication:

University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Box 870266
Tuscaloosa, Alabama, 35487-0266
205.348.0500
archives@ua.edu

October 2013

Creation:

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2013-11-15T16:14-0600

Language Usage:

English

Description Rules:

Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Collection Title:

Woodward Iron Company records

Unit ID:

W.0061

Repository:

University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Quantity:

0.5 Linear feet

Dates:

1945-1977

Location:

The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library, The University of Alabama

Abstract:

Correspondence, financial and legal records, annual reports, and employee newsletters produced by the Woodward Iron Company and members of the Woodward Voting Trust, from 1945-1977.

creator

Williams, A. S., III

creator

Woodward Iron Company.

Access Restrictions:

None

Acquisition Information:

Gift of A. S. Williams III, 2010

Scope and Contents note

This collection contains correspondence, financial and legal records, annual reports, and employee newsletters produced by the Woodward Iron Company and members of the Woodward Voting Trust. Much of the correspondence, dated from 1950-1961, discusses investments, meetings, and other activities of the Woodward Voting Trust. Press releases and stockholder reports on strikes in 1957 and 1959 are included, as well as information related to the company's merger with Mead Corporation in 1968.

Biographical/Historical note

Founded in December 1881 by brothers Joseph Hersey Woodward and William Harvey Woodward, the Woodward Iron Company produced pig iron in Birmingham, Alabama. In 1885, W. H. Woodward resigned his position as president of the company, leaving J. H. Woodward to manage the company. He continued to expand production, opening a second furnace in 1886 and creating the town of Woodward in 1887.

J. H. Woodward's son, Alan Harvey "Rick" Woodward, became the company's general manager. Under Rick Woodward's management, the company faced two staggering blows. First, a furnace expoded in 1926, killing several employees. Next, the company failed to weather the economic downturn of the 1930s, filing for bankruptcy in 1936. Thanks to a boom in steel demand during World War II, the company recovered its losses and expanded, opening a fourth furnace in 1951.

The Woodward family maintained controlling interest in the company through a voting trust formed in 1948. The trust was made up of J. H. Woodward's seven grandchildren and their descendants. This voting trust managed the company's investments until the trust was dissolved in 1961. In 1968, the Woodward Iron Company merged with the Mead Company. The mills ceased production in 1973.

Source: Fazio, Michael W. "The Making and Unmaking of the Woodward Iron Company." Alabama Heritage 68 (Spring 2003): 6-17.

Preferred Citation:

Woodward Iron Company records, The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Processing Information:

Processed by

Haley Aaron and Martha Bace, 2013

General note

Title on phase box spine: History of the Woodward Iron Company of Birmingham

Related Archival Materials note

Woodward Family papers (MSS1577), University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama.

The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection and the W. S. Hoole Special Collections Library hold other materials relating to the Woodward Iron Company. Please contact staff for assistance.

Source(s)

Williams, A. S., III (local)

Woodward Iron Company. (Library_of_Congress_Name_Authority_File)

Alabama (lcsh)

Birmingham (Ala.) (lcsh)

Business and Labor (localbroad)

Business records (lcsh)

Iron and Steel Industry (Local)

Correspondence, 1950-1951 Box W0061.01 Folder 1

Correspondence, 1952 Box W0061.01 Folder 2

Correspondence, 1953-1954 Box W0061.01 Folder 3

Correspondence, 1955-1956 Box W0061.01 Folder 4

Correspondence, 1957-1959 Box W0061.01 Folder 5

Correspondence, 1960-1961, not dated Box W0061.01 Folder 6

Financial Documents, 1952-1954, not dated Box W0061.01 Folder 7

Legal Documents, 1948-1955 Box W0061.01 Folder 8

Linn-Henley Charitable Trust, 1977 Box W0061.01 Folder 9

Mead Corporation, 1968 Box W0061.01 Folder 10

Meeting Notes, 1951-1957, not dated Box W0061.01 Folder 11

Miscellaneous, 1952-1958, not dated Box W0061.01 Folder 12

Pooling Agreement, 1961 Box W0061.01 Folder 13

Receipts, 1951-1958 Box W0061.01 Folder 14

Strike Documents, 1957-1959 Box W0061.01 Folder 15

Voting Trust Statements, 1950-1961 Box W0061.01 Folder 16

Annual Meeting/Proxy Forms, 1949-1959 Box W0061.01 Folder 17

Annual Meeting/Proxy Forms, 1961-1968 Box W0061.01 Folder 18

Woodward Employe News, 1945-1953 Box W0061.01 Folder 19

Annual Reports, 1950-1967 Box W0061.01 Folder 20