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Blair Strip Steel Company - New Castle PA

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George D. Blair Sr., an executive with the Elliott-Blair Company, sold his interest in the business in April 1923 and left to establish – with his son George D. Blair Jr. – the Blair Strip Steel Company. A plant, which produced sheets of cold rolled steel, was erected on Butler Avenue (at Cascade Street) and was put into operation in August 1924. Blair initially sold most of its product to the automobile industry. Operations were halted after a serious fire damaged the plant in October 1930. A new steel plant, which was under construction for several years, was put in operation in early 1931. Although business was slow the company survived the Great Depression, and then shifted its production to support the military effort during World War II. George D. Blair Jr. served as President from 1928-1949 and was succeeded by his son Thomas S. Blair from 1949-1984. The company, now headed by Bruce A. Kinney, is still in business today. In 2010 a subsidiary known as BelleFlex, which produces disc springs, was opened in Armstrong County. (Aug 2015) Full Size



George D. Blair Sr. (1851-1928), a native of Pittsburgh, was the son of Thomas Blair (1825-1898) – a well-known iron and steel man in Pittsburgh. Blair County is named after their descendants. George came to New Castle in 1898 to join what became the Elliott-Blair Co. He founded the Blair Strip Steel Co. in 1923 and headed it until his death in 1928, when his son George D. Blair Jr. took over. (c1905)


Thomas S. Blair (1922-2003), the son of George D. Blair Jr., attended Williams College in Massachusetts. During World War II he worked as a research assistant with the Manhattan Project in New York City and in Tennessee. He returned to New Castle and took over as President of the Blair Strip Steel Co. upon the death of his father in 1949. He served in the post from 1949-1984 and eventually retired to Florida. (c1980)



The Blair Strip Steel plant at the intersection of Butler Avenue (at bottom) and Cascade Street. (c2012)

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