Collection ID: M.86

Collection context

Summary

Date:
1940-1965
Abstract:
The Anaconda American Brass Company Records contains various company publications and administrative records regarding the American Brass and Anaconda Copper Companies. The collection mainly consists of company publications which were used to advertise products to customers, as well as employee handbooks. The collection also includes documents regarding the Anaconda's history and then merger with American Brass Company. There is a small amount of material detailing the Waterbury flood of 1955, as well as photographs and original drawings for product advertisements.
Extent:
2.25 Linear Feet and 5 legal manuscript boxes and 6 volumes
Language:
English .

Background

Rules or conventions:
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Scope and Content:

The Anaconda American Brass Company Records contains documents from 1940-1965 and undated. The collection is arranged in two series: Administrative Files and Product Information.

The Anaconda American Brass Company Records contains various company publications and administrative records regarding the American Brass and Anaconda Copper Companies. The collection mainly consists of company publications which were used to advertise products to customers, as well as employee handbooks. The collection also includes documents regarding the Anaconda's history and then merger with American Brass Company. There is a small amount of material detailing the Waterbury flood of 1955, as well as photographs and original drawings for product advertisements.

Biographical / Historical:

The American Brass Company was a brass company located in Waterbury, Ct. American Brass was formed on June 7, 1883, as a holding company for six other brass companies including, Scovill, Booth and Haydens, and Benedict and Burnham manufacturing company. Through this merger the company grew to be a very large producer of brass, by 1909 it was known as one of the largest producers in the country. However, American Brass began to lag because the company was not able to eliminate duplication in its manufacturing plants. In 1922 Anaconda Copper Company bought American Brass for $175,450,384, in one of the largest business deals to date. After this deal the company rapidly began expanding to Canada.

The Anaconda Copper Company was founded in 1881 by Marcus Daly in Butte, Montana. Daly was a mine manager and engineer of the Alice silver mine in Walkerville, a suburb in Butte. He noticed the higher-grade copper deposits while working and bought that mine after his employers showed no interest in mining the higher-grade copper. In order to fund the company Daly began a partnership with George Hearst, James Ben Ali Haggen, and Lloyd Tevis. During mining deposits of copper were found, the smelter in Butte soon became known as "The Richest Hill on Earth." From 1892 through 1903, the Anaconda mine was the largest copper-producing mine in the world. In 1892 the Rothschilds, wo tried to gain control over the copper market, briefly owned Anaconda stock, however this partnership was brief. The company began rapidly expanding, in 1899 the company partnered with Standard Oil, owned by H.H.Rodgers and William Rockefeller. The company changed its name to Amalgamated Copper Company. In 1900 Marcus Daly passed away, his share of the company was given by his widow to John D. Ryan. Under Ryan the mining company began a monopoly on copper mining in Butte. The twenties were a period of rapid expansion for the company, expanding to Chile, Mexico, and bought American Brass Company. During this period of expansion Anaconda participated in "pump and dump" stock trades, which was a leading cause of the 1929 stock market crash and 1930s depression. The company was not financially successful again until World War II and earned many E-Awards for their war time production. After WWII the demand for brass, copper, and silver declines and the company began practicing open-pit mining. During the 80s because of this practice the mining site were marked as Superfund sites by the EPA and closed.

Indexed Terms

Subjects:
Brass industry and trade
Places:
Waterbury, Connecticut

Access

LOCATION OF THIS COLLECTION:
63 Prospect St
Waterbury, CT, USA
CONTACT:
(203) 753-0381
scrawford@mattmuseum.org