A Local History
About three and one half miles northwest of Liberty on the farm now owned by Mr. B. F. Coddington stands a building eighteen by twenty four feet in size which at present is used for a carpenter shop. In this building the citizens of Liberty have a particular interest.
Thirty five years ago it was the work room of three young men whose genius for mechanics was applied to the repair and construction of simple farm implements. Success with these stimulated their ambition to attempt greater things and the united efforts of these three young men originated one of Liberty’s leading enterprises, commonly know as Rude’s Shop.
In the year 1869 the shop was transferred to a small frame building on the site of the present place. At the time it was not surrounded by residents as it is now but only a few homes were scattered here and there. Not contrary to the rule there were a few persons who thought this shop would never meet with any degree of success, but not withstanding this the brothers were firm and worked even harder to accomplish their purpose.
The shop had no steam power and the only machine used was a hand drill which all parts were put together with the hand powered drawing knife and hand plane. The first
machine made was a one horse wheat drill on which Let___Patent were granted by the U.S. Patent Office in the year, 1866. Steam power was installed in 1875 and with the advent of this they began to make implements of a higher order.
In July 1875 the entire frame structure was destroyed by fire. People worked with a will to save the documents, deeds, and rights to furnish orders to all parts of the world. The public in general questioned the probability of it ever being rebuilt and only after strong persuasion on the part of our town did the looser thereby don a new mantle of courage and break ground for a larger plant than the former had been. This was rebuilt the following year, a portion of the building being two stories high.
Previous to the year of 1881 the style of the firm was Rude Bros., but in October of this year the business was organized into a Stock Company bearing the name Rude Bros. Mfg. Co. under which style it operates today._____ ___ ___ there are but two
remaining members. In the following year a small foundry was erected and enlarged to its present dimensions in 1897.
Again fire was the destroyer of a part of this progressive factory for in April 1886 a large three story warehouse and its valuable contents was burned. The firm immediately rebuilt this structure with brick.
By steadily increasing the size and number of buildings, the present factory covers an area of approximately two hundred eighty by two hundred twenty feet, exclusion of the two story warehouse which is just across the street from the main building. This warehouse is sixty by ninety feet and is a recent addition to the Plant.
The trade of the factory excludes from the Rocky Mountains on the west to New England on the east, from Canada on the north, to Central America on the south, having an especially fine trade in Mexico.
The stock holders at the present time are doing a ___ business that speaks well for the firm and their dividends show a steady increase from year to year.
Yoked to a strong hold in its youth we have reason to be hopeful for a prosperous and successful old age.
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