By 1900, Greenfield Massachusetts was well known for it’s many manufacturers of metal tools and products. The tool makers Wiley & Russell Mfg. and Wells Bros. & Co. were famous as leaders in machine thread cutting tools (taps and dies). Twenty years earlier, these two company’s stock and trade were in making a variety of tools for the professional metal workers of the time, the blacksmith. This was a product line of specialized tools, that included drill presses, foot operated vises, mandrels and even more exotic tools, such as the Samson Tire Upsetter.
As the country entered the 20th century, the Wells Bros. & Co. and Wiley & Russell were concentrating on becoming world leaders in screw thread cutting technology. Their efforts would become more and more focused on this goal and would eventually be combined in 1912 as the newly formed Greenfield Tap & Die Corp. (GTD) Gradually, the other tool lines were discontinued or licensed out to other companies.
The catalog below is the remaining black-smithing tool line previously manufactured by the Wells Brothers. The licensee is B.B. Noyes & Co., who also was a prominent Greenfield metal product maker of the 1870s. Their product line was a great variety of materials, from “man-hole” cover plates to baby carriage metal accessories. Here is their catalog of the remaining Wells Brother’s black-smithing tool line: