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Morton Manufacturing Company records

Identifier: RHC-20
The collection documents contract work during the 1940s and 1950s with Westinghouse, General Electric, steel companies, the auto industry and U.S. Navy yards in California and Virginia. Master group sheet forms include contract number, group name and number, drawing number, and machine type. Contract files contain plans and drawings, correspondence, and purchase orders. A description of the plant at that time by a representative of The Weekly Muskegon Chronicle is included in the collection.


  • 1941-1954


Access to Materials

Collection is open for research use. Materials may be accessed by request at Special Collections and University Archives in Seidman House. Materials do not circulate.

Publication Rights

For information on copyright or permissions for this collection, contact Grand Valley State University Special Collections.


3.75 Linear Feet (3 cartons)

Administrative History

Matthew Morton founded the Morton Company in approximately 1870 at Lapeer, Michigan with the purpose of building steam engines. After the company moved to Romeo, Michigan it became known as the Morton Valve Company, and furnished valves to saw mills and water works plants. Some of the company's early products included horse power devices, (treadmills) and agricultural machinery such as feed cutters. In 1881 the company moved to Muskegon Heights, Michigan. On July 8, 1891 a 27 car freight train with machinery and equipment for the Morton Company arrived in Muskegon Heights with about twenty families.

Before 1900 the company developed technology to aid in metal work with large castings, vital to future contracts with the U.S. Navy yards, manufacturers, and steel and tin mills. After filing for bankruptcy in 1968 a new management group renamed the company IFR Morton Industries. In April, 1972 the management notified personnel that the plant would close unless another group or business firm acquired the plant. Robert Morton was appointed Vice President of Sales and Engineering and held that position until the Morton Manufacturing Company / IFR Morton Industries, Inc. closed its doors.


Arranged in 2 series 1) Project files; 2) Blueprints and correspondence

Source of Acquisition

Acquired from W. Derrick Bell in March 1981.
Morton Manufacturing Company records, RHC-20
Special Collections & University Archives
Description rules
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Grand Valley State University Special Collections and University Archives Repository

Seidman House
1 Campus Drive
Allendale MI 49401 United States