Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. designs in collections, exhibitions, design catalogues and historical information

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| Design Meriden | 22 May 2016 | Updated 23 October 2018


Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. pocket knives


Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. building Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. map


"MILLER BROS. CUTLERY CO.
I. C. Lewis, President; W. F. Rockwell, Secretary and Treasurer. Manufacturers of Fine Pocket Cutlery, Ink Erasers and Steel Pens. Factory, Meriden, Conn.; New York Office, 825 Broadway. The Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. of Meriden, Conn. was organized for the Manufacture of Pocket Cutlery in 1870, by Messrs. W. H. & Geo. W. Miller. It was subsequently re-organized in 1876, with Lemuel J. Curtis as President, and Wm. F. Rockwell as Secretary and Treasurer. The manufacture of Steel Pens was added in 1881, by the purchase of George Bradford’s plant, and the employment of Mr. Bradford as Superintendent of the Pen Department. In 1885, Mr. J. H. Charlton was appointed Superintendent of the Factory, and upon the death of Mr. Curtis, in 1888, the Hon. Isaac C. Lewis was elected President of the Company. Frequent additions have been made to the buildings and machinery in both Cutlery and Pen Departments during the past ten years. Now their capacity for turning out goods is greater than any other establishment on the country in the same lines of business. The quality of their productions is unexcelled in the world and their well earned reputation is carefully maintained."

— D.H. Hurd & Co. (1893). “Miller Bros. Cutlery Co.”, (p. 211) and illustration. In Town and city atlas of the State of Connecticut. Compiled from government surveys, county records and personal investigations. (See entry below.)


A. Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. designs in collections (by year)


Info/photo status: = info and photo online
= info online, no photo
= completely offline


1880s

1885 - eraser

Miller Bros. (1885). Eraser. Metal, bone. (Cat. no. 99.171.3. Viewed 18 July 2018. G02948-49).


1890s

1895 - eraser

Miller Bros. (1895). Eraser. Steel, rose wood. (Cat. no. 2007.222.1. Viewed 18 July 2018. G02946-47).


n. d.

n. d. - lancet and case

Miller Bros. (undated). Lancet and case. (Cat. no. P81.743.08A-B. Viewed 25 August 2018. J00096-97).

n. d. - carving knife

Miller Bros. Cutlery Company. (undated). Carving knife. Steel, ivory handle. (Object ID no. 1998.005.20. Viewed 18 July 2018. G02945).

n. d. - ink eraser knife

Miller Bros. (undated). Ink eraser knife. (Accession no. 1960.139.33. Viewed 27 July 2018. H00043).

n. d. - pocket knife, two blades

Miller Bros. (undated). Pocket knife, two blades. (Cat. no. 74.7.9. Viewed 20 August 2018. L00631).


B. Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. designs in exhibitions


1880s

1881 - Meriden Town Hall exhibition

20-23 September 1881. Meriden Town Hall display, Connecticut State Fair, Meriden, CT.

> Exhibited unspecified wares by Miller Bros. Cutlery Co.

  • For documentation, see the historical section below.

1884 - Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. in Meriden Town Hall, CT State Fair

16-19 September 1884. Meriden Town Hall display, Connecticut State Fair, Meriden, CT.

> Exhibited by Miller Bros. Cutlery Co., "a large show case filled with a fine line of samples of their celebrated goods".

  • For documentation, see historical section below.

1889 - Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. in Meriden opera house exhibition

10 October 1889. Exposition at Delavan Opera House, Meriden, on the occasion of the visit of the International American Congress.

> Exhibited Miller Bros. Cutlery Co., pens and pocket knives, largely unspecified.

  • For documentation, see historical section below.


C. Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. design catalogues and historical information (by year)


Material status: = online
= link to more info
= completely offline


1860s

1868 - patent - improvement in tool for mending belts

George W. Miller. (4 August 1868). Letters patent no. 80,756: Improvement in tool for mending belts. (Viewed 31 March 2018. AAA01680).


1870s

Various newspapers, magazines and other sources

(c. 1870-). Various newspapers, magazines and other sources - search engines. (Updated 18 October 2017.)

1870 - patent - improvement in the manufacture of blades of pocket-cutlery

William H. Miller and George W. Miller, assignor to Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. (2 August 1870). Letters patent no. 106,073: Improvement in the manufacture of blades of pocket-cutlery. (Viewed 31 March 2018. AAA01679).

1874 - patent - improvement in the manufacture of blades of pocket-cutlery

William H. Miller and George W. Miller, assignor to Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. (Reissued 29 December 1874; filed 12 October 1874). Reissue no. 6195; letters patent no. 106,073 (2 August 1870): Improvement in the manufacture of blades of pocket-cutlery. (Viewed 31 March 2018. AAA01678).

1875 - patent - improvement in dies for making the handles of pocket-cutlery

William H. Miller. (23 February 1875; filed 27 October 1874). Letters patent no. 160,059: Improvement in dies for making the handles of pocket-cutlery. (Viewed 31 March 2018. AAA01681).

1875 - patent - improvement in dies for manufacturing bolsters for pocket-knives

William H. Miller and George W. Miller. (8 June 1875; filed 3 December 1874). Letters patent no. 164,320: Improvement in dies for manufacturing bolsters for pocket-knives. (Viewed 31 March 2018. AAA01682).

1876 - Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. in Philadelphia exhibition

(1876). List of awards made by the United States Centennial Commission to the American Exhibitors, International Exhibition, 1876, at Philadelphia. [Listed: Miller Brothers Cutlery Co., (p. 52). The actual award received is not indicated in this text.] S. T. Souder & Company: Philadelphia. (Viewed 16 June 2016. A00841-42.)

1876 - Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. in Philadelphia exhibition

(1877). Souvenir of the Centennial exhibition [1876]: Connecticut’s representation at Philadelphia. (Exhibition dates: 10 May - 10 November 1876.) [Core section: pp 99-111; also see exhibits list: pp. 124-27; Exhibitors including Miller Bros. Cutlery Company]. Geo. D. Curtis: Hartford, CT. (Viewed 25 June 2016. A00965-75.)


1880s

1880 - illustration of building

Porter, Wils (lithographer). (1881). Illustration of Miller Bros. Cutlery. In Meriden, Conn. 1881 / From Summit Heights [print (lithograph)]. B. S. Farrow (Publisher). (Object no. 1973.0498.004. (Viewed 3 June 2017. A02584-85.)

c. 1881 - logo / letterhead

Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. (1881 or earlier). Letter dated 1881 with logo / letterhead. (Viewed 9 June 2017. A02634.)

1881 - spotlighted news mention - in Meriden Town Hall exhibition

(20 September 1881). The State Fair [with mention of Miller Bros. Cutlery Co.]. Meriden Daily Republican, pp. 1-2. (Viewed 29 September 2018. (B00573-79).

" ... Of pocket cutlery there is a very large display by Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. ... comprising all styles and sizes, from the tiny penknife to the strong tragic looking dirk of the assassin." (Excerpt from above.)


1881 - news mention - Miller Bros. at Meriden Town Hall, CT State Fair

(23 September 1881). The state fair (including mention of Miller Bros. [Cutlery Co.]; at this juncture, it is believed that the statement in the article is incorrect, and that the Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. was the company exhibiting wares, not the Meriden Cutlery Co., and that there was no formal connection between the two companies. See Meriden Daily Republican article, 20 September 1881). Morning Journal and Courier (New Haven, CT), presumably p. 2, col. 4. (Viewed 29 September 2018. B00568-69).

1881 - news mention - in Meriden Town Hall exhibition

(23 September 1881). The State Fair [with mention: "... Diplomas were awarded to the following named for articles manufactured or displayed by them ... Miller Bros. Cutlery Co., pocket cutlery ..."]. Meriden Daily Republican, pp. 1-2. (Viewed 29 September 2018. B00570-72).

1881 - patent - handle for pocket-knives

George W. Miller. (26 April 1881; filed 16 December 1880). Letters patent no. 240,749: Handle for pocket-knives. (Viewed 31 March 2018. AAA01683).

c. 1882 - advertisement

(c. 1882). Miller Bros. Cutlery Co advert (pocket cutlery, ladies’ scissors, ink erasers, steel pens), (p. 34). In The Maryland farmer, (volume, issue and dating unclear). (Also see another Miller Bros. Cutler Co advert, on a p. 40, in a later issue. Search online file.) (Viewed 4 March 2017. A01593-95.)

1883 - advertisement

Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. (13 November 1883). Advertisement: "The Miller Bros. Cutlery Co., Meriden, Conn., Standard Pocket Cutlery... Steel Pens..." Meriden Daily Republican, p. 1, column 8. (Viewed 9 September 2017. G00266).

1884 - map

(1884). Meriden, Connecticut map, (p. 8 showing Miller Bros. Cutlery at end of Pratt Street.) Sanborn Map & Publishing Co. 14 leaves. (Viewed 21 November 2016. A01026; AAA00008.)

1884 - news mention - at Meriden Town Hall, CT State Fair

(17 September 1884). The second day [of the CT State Fair and mention: "... Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. have a large show case filled with a fine line of samples of their celebrated goods... "]. Meriden Daily Republican, pp. 1 & presumably p. 3, col. 4. (Viewed 30 September 2018. B00590-91).

1884 - news mention - at Meriden Town Hall, CT State Fair

(18 September 1884). The Great Day! [with mention of Miller Bros. Cutlery Co.]. Meriden Daily Republican, presumably pp. 1 & 4, col. 4. (Viewed 30 September 2018. B00588-89).

"Manufactured goods. The premiums in this department were awarded for the largest and best display in each branch... Miller Bros. Cutlery Co., display of cutlery and steel pens ..." (Excerpt from above.)


1884 - patent - pen-holder

William F. Rockwell, assignor to Miller Bros. Cutlery Company. (29 July 1884). Letters patent no. 302,780: Pen-holder. (Viewed 31 March 2018. AAA01677).

1886 - advertisement

Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. (4 February 1886). Advertisement: "The Miller Bros. Cutlery Co., Meriden, Conn., Standard Pocket Cutlery..." Meriden Daily Republican, p. 1, column 8. (Viewed 9 September 2017. G00228).

1886 - patent - pocket-knife

George W. Miller. (2 November 1886; filed 10 December 1885). Letters patent no. 351,787; serial no. 185,210: Pocket-knife. (Viewed 31 March 2018. AAA01684).

1887 - patent - pocket-knife

George W. Miller. (21 June 1887; filed 10 August 1886). Letters patent no. 365,086; serial no. 211,244: Pocket-knife. (Viewed 31 March 2018. AAA01685).

1889 - missing booklet accompanying exposition - at Meriden opera house

(1889). Meriden Journal Souvenir [leather-bound booklet containing a list of the manufactories contributing to the exhibition at the Delavan Opera House, Meriden, 10 October 1889, and other companies in Meriden], 4 pp. (Viewed 13 September 2018. L00763; L00765-68).

"Miller Bros. Cutlery Co., pocket cutlery, shears, scissors and pens." (Excerpt in full from article above; the company’s designs are reported to be in the exhibition.)


1889 - article, Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. in Meriden opera house exhibition

(10 October 1889). Americans in Meriden: Visit of the International American Congress [with small section describing Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. exhibited wares]. Meriden Daily Republican, pp. 1-2. (Viewed 9 September 2018. L00747-59).

"Pen and pocket knives from the factory of the Miller Bros.’ Cutlery company formed an attractive display. The pens were shown in all shapes and sizes, arranged in boxes and on cards, and in artistic design. An enormous pocket knife of 90 or 100 blades was the centrepiece of the exhibit, and flanked by every conceivable design from the travelers practical knife with the corkscrew down to the tiny ivory handled lady’s with a glove buttoner. The pen display was equally attractive, the artistic arrangement being as worthy of recognition as the merits of the pens. Both cutlery and pens were shown in process of manufacture, an interesting feature of this exhibit." (Excerpt from "Americans in Meriden" article listed above.)


1889 - news mention - in Meriden opera house exposition

(10 October 1889). Our guests: Honored visitors here to-day [including section on exhibited wares by Miller Bros. Cutlery Co.]. Meriden Daily Journal, p. 1. (Viewed 15 September 2018. L00769-83).

"...one feature was the exhibit of pens in the twelve processes of manufacture from the sheet steel to the completed pen. The exhibit in this department was especially interesting and complete and of unusual importance to Meriden people from the fact that this is the only firm that has started the manufacture of pens in the last twenty-five years in this country and made a success of it...." (Excerpt from above.)


1889 - news mention - in Meriden opera house exposition

(10 October 1889). Notes of the visit: Meriden’s enterprise on this occasion praised by all [including mention of Miller Bros. Cutlery Co., with excerpts from New Haven Register and Hartford Post]. Meriden Daily Journal, p. 1. (Viewed 15 September 2018. L00781-83).

"Miller Bros. cutlery company presented each of the visitors with a pearl-handled three-bladed knife in a satin lined case." (Full excerpt from above.)


1889 - news mention - Meriden opera house exhibition

(11 October 1889). The show photographed: Fine pictures of the Opera House exhibit made. ["The best of them will be forwarded to Frank Leslie’s paper— what the state and New York press has to say about Meriden", with excerpts from Hartford Courant, Hartford Times, New Haven Register, New York Herald, New York Tribune, Waterbury Republican, with no specific mention of Miller Bros. Cutlery Co.] Meriden Daily Journal, p. 1. (Viewed 14 September 2018. L00785-89).

1889 - advertisement

Littell’s Drugstore / Jonas Jacobs, stationer / Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. (12 October 1889). Advertisement: "... Are American and the best..." The Opelousas Courier, p. 4. col. 5. (Viewed 14 September 2018. L00795).


1890s

1890 - advertisement

(January 1890). "Miller Bros. Cutlery Co." advert, for pens, (page number unspecified but towards the end of the magazine). In The century illustrated monthly magazine. (Viewed 4 March 2017. A01583-84.)

1891 - advertisement

Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. (2 January 1891). Advertisement: "The Miller Bros. Cutlery Co., Meriden, Conn., Standard Pocket Cutlery..." Meriden Daily Republican, p. 4, column 2. (Viewed 9 September 2017. G00222).

1892 - news mention

(2 November 1892). [News mention of presumably Miller Bros. Cutlery Co.]. The Durham Recorder (Durham, North Carolina), presumably p. 4, col. 2. (Viewed 27 September 2018. B00514).

"A Meriden cutlery factory has just finished a wonderful toy— a perfect pocketknife with thirty blades, pincers, shears, alws, etc., which weighs but one-eighth of an ounce." (Full excerpt from above.)


1893 - historical information

D.H. Hurd & Co. (1893). On "Miller Bros. Cutlery Co.", (p. 211) and building illustration. In Town and city atlas of the State of Connecticut. Compiled from government surveys, county records and personal investigations. Boston, MA. (Viewed 21 May 2016. A00682-84.)

1893 - news mention

(August 1893). News mention: "The building of Miller Bros. Cutlery Company, of Meriden, Conn., was totally destroyed by fire on the morning of July 8th..." House Furnishing Review, p. 62. (Viewed 4 October 2017. G01101.)

1895 - news mention

(12 August 1895). Meriden’s factories [including mention of Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. as the 20th largest factory in Meriden]. The Daily Morning Journal and Courier (New Haven, CT), p. 3, col. 1. (Viewed 27 September 2018. B00517-18).

1895 - advertisement

Miller Bros Cutlery Co. (1 March 1895). Advertisement: "’Miller Bros.’ Steel Pens..." Meriden Daily Republican, p. 2, column 1. (Viewed 11 September 2017. G00236).

c. 1897 - historical information

Davis, William T. (Ed.) (c. 1897). On "Miller Bros. Cutlery Co.", (p. 933). In The New England states, their constitutional, judicial, educational, commercial, professional and industrial history, vol. 2. Boston: D. H. Hurd & Co. (Viewed 9 June 2017. A02626; A02635.)


1900s

1903 - thirteen advertisements

(1903). "Miller Bros. Cutlery Co." adverts, for pens. (Search document to see 13 placements in issues.) In The medical age: A semi-monthly journal of medicine and surgery, vol. 21. (Viewed 4 March 2017. A01596.)

1905 - patent - knife grinding machine

Hanson Robinson, assignor to Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. (1 August 1905; filed 1 September 1904). Letters patent no. 796,016; filed 1 September 1904: Knife grinding machine. (Viewed 9 March 2018. AAA01055.)

1906 - historical information

Gillespie, Charles Bancroft & Curtis, George Munson. (1906). On "The Miller Brothers Cutlery Co." section including illustration of building, (pp. 56-58). In A century of Meriden: A historic record and pictorial description of the town of Meriden, Connecticut and the men who made it, from earliest settlement to close of its first century of incorporation, (Part III). (Viewed 19 November 2016. A00791-92.)

1906 - historical information

Gillespie, Charles Bancroft & Curtis, George Munson. (1906). A century of Meriden: A historic record and pictorial description of the town of Meriden, Connecticut and the men who made it, from earliest settlement to close of its first century of incorporation, (Part II). (Viewed 19 November 2016. A00791-92.)

Biographies of Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. management:
> Isaac Chauncey Lewis (President) (pp. 354-58 including portrait);
> Charles Lee Rockwell (President) (pp. 537-39 including portrait);
> William F. Rockwell (involved in 1876 re-organization) (pp. 467-70 including portrait).

1906 - advertisement

Miller Brothers Cutlery Co. (14 June 1906). Advertisement: "’American and Best’, That’s the kind of Pocket Knives Made by Miller Brothers Cutlery Co., Meriden, Conn." [no illustrations]. Meriden Morning Record, p. 7, col. 2. (Viewed 23 October 2018. B01192-95).

1907 - news mention

(25 April 1907). Meriden concerns enlarging; some $200,000 to be expended upon industrial plants (with mention: "... Miller [Bros.] Cutlery company... ") The Daily Morning Journal and Courier (New Haven, CT), p. 5, col. 4. (Viewed 3 October 2018. B00703).

1908 - patent - grinding-machine

Hanson Robinson, assignor to Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. (29 December 1908; filed 4 September 1907). Letter patent no. 908,141; filed 4 September 1907: Grinding-machine. (Viewed 9 March 2018. AAA01056.)


1910s

1911 - two advertisements

Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. (16 February 1911). Advertisement: "Miller Bros. Pens are ’American and Best’..." Meriden Weekly Republican, p. 3, column 2 and p. 7. column 2. (Viewed 12 September 2017. G00248; G00251.)

1916 - advertisement

Miller Bros. Cutlery Co. (17 May 1916). Advertisement: "Miller Bros. Cutlery Co., Fine Pocket Cutlery, Steel Pens and Ink Erasers..." Meriden Morning Record, p. 9, column 2. (Viewed 15 September 2017. G00410.)

1917 - historical information

(1917). Encyclopedia of Connecticut biography, vol 3. [On Charles Rockwell (and Miller Brothers Cutlery Company), (pp. 67-8).] The American Historical Society, Inc.: Boston, New York, Chicago. (Viewed 28 November 2016. AAA00525; AAA0535-36.)

1918 - aerial illustration

(1918). Aero view of Meriden, Connecticut. [Including illustration of Miller Bros. Cutlery Co., 464 Pratt Street] Hughes & Bailey: Boston. (Viewed 20 July 2016. A01020-21.)


n. d.

Design catalogue

Miller Bros Cutlery Co. (undated). [catalog no. 646 (handwritten)]. Meriden, CT; 93 pp. (Viewed 21 May 2016. A00680-81.)

  • Offline - Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.

Map

(Undated). Miller Brothers Cutlery Company - fire insurance map. (Viewed 15 May 2017. A02437.)