Lake Maxinkuckee Its Intrigue History & Genealogy Culver, Marshall, Indiana

Culver Hi-Speed Recap Tire Co.  



The business was opened by Harry Edgington and Charles Medbourn (president) in 1941; which was finally was located at 115 E. Jefferson St. after it burned in 1945; ads list the address as 201 E. Jefferson in 1944.

1941 - Oct 29 - New Businees Startes - A new business will make its bow here Friday when the Culver Hi-Speed Recap Tire Co., opens for business in the Bogardus Building on E. Jefferson street. New machines are being installed to handle the re-treading of worn tires.

This is probably the location of the first Building labeled "garage" The area on West Jefferson where it was located from the 1937 Sanborn fire map
Tire re-capping procedure -
  • Following inspection, those tires deemed appropriate for retreading have the remaining old tread removed through the use of high-speed buffers.
  • In the Pre Cure method, the tread rubber is vulcanized with new tread before being applied to the tire, using a layer of cushion gum that acts as a bonding agent. The tire is then put into a curing chamber where the tread is adhered to the tire using a vulcanizing process similar to that used in the manufacture of new tires.
  • With the Mold Cure method, tread rubber is applied to the tire prior to v ulcanization. The tire then goes into a rigid mold that contains the tread design. The mold is heated and the rubber is vulcanized, which bonds the tread rubber to the tire.
  • Tires retreaded using either method then undergo a final inspection, are trimmed of excess rubber and painted.
  • 1942 - Apr 8 - Local Recapping Firm Has Rubber in Stock Now
      The Culver Hi-Speed Recapping Company has received notice that it has been named by the Marshall County Rationing Board as an inspection place for tires and tubes.

      The local company now was rubber on hand to recap all sizes of passenger cars and light delivery trucks.

      Priority aautherization must be secured before any recapping can be done. Blanks are obtainable at the company's plant on E. Jefferson street. Government specificationas and prices must be followed.


    An April 15 1942 ad announcing that "Our rubber for capping tires is here"


    1942 - Jul 22 - Installing New Mold - The volume of business of the Culver Hi-Speed Recap Tire Company has been increasing until it has been mecessary to operate on a 24-hour basis to handle the orders. Now a new mold has been ordered that will double the production capacity of the plant, and when it is installed at the end of the week this tire recapping firm will be able to handle all orders without dealy

    1942- Oct 14 - A statewide meeting of tire recappers met in Culver at the Maxinkuckee Inn with over 58 in attendance, including Charles Medbourn, president of Culver Hi-Speed Recap Tire Co. The Culver plant was inspected and the group attended a colorful parade at Culver Academy.

    1943 - Apr 7 - Local Recap Tire Co. Given Master Treader Rating by Institute
      A framed certificate adorns the office of the Culver Hi-Speed Recapping Tire CO. stating that the firm has been given a Certified Master Treader rating by the National Institute of Treading Standards. A facimils of the Certificate appears on another page of the isssue.

      In a letter announcing the award, the institute wrote:
        You are to be heartily congradualated as our recent investigation of your business shows you to be the operator of an establishment of higest integrity. The quality of your work comforms with our standards and you have been approved by the Board of Control. This is no light achievement as only treaders of highest reputation can cecome members of the National Institute of Treading Standards


      The institue, which has headquarters in Washington D.C., has issued only three of these awards in Imdoama, it is stated.

      The Culver Hi-SPeed Recapping Tire Co. of which Charles E. Medbourn is president and Harry Edginton, vice president, has benn expanding rapidly to handle its increasing business, which in itself indicates that the company must be turning out sartisfactory work.

      The plant now has four molds, one of wohich is a truck tire mold, and has two more passenger tire molds ordered. When these are installed the plant will be turning out 100 to 120 paseenger and 10 truck recapped tires daily.

      Yet this won't allow the local firm to keep up with orders at the rate they are coming in now. On Monday 140 finished tires were delivered and around 150 tires to be recapped were brought in. Over 700 tires awaiting recapping are on the storage racks.

      Five new vulcanizers have been added to the plant's equipment, making a total of 10 now.

      A new storage room has been built and other rooms improved. A runway has been installed to carry the finished tires back too the delivery room.

      The Culver Hi-Speed Recappers now now have a force of 16 employed here and have over 200 stations as customers in Elkarhart, St. Joseph, Marshall, Fulton, Pulaski, Laporte, Starke, Lake, Jasper, Newton, White and Cass counties.

      The public is invited to visit the plant on E. Jefferson street and see the remarkable groth the firm has made and why it has bee rated as Master Retreader.


    1943 - Sep 8 - Local Plant Repairs Tack FIlled Bands
      The Culver branch of the Recap Tire Engineering Co. of Indianapolis, established by Charles E. Medborn in June under the management of Mus Violet Overmyer, is of Unique origin, created by war necessity.

      With the rubber situation requiring ol tires to be kept in use by recapping, tack filed bands are used to buff the worn surfaces on the tires before recapping. Since tine is scasre the bands are used over and over by refilling with tacks.

      It is salvaging and refilling of the buffing bands, along with the packing and shipping of the orders, that has engaged the Culver branch.

      In 10 weeks the business has grown from an idea to a weekly out put of 550 bands, going to points in 28 states as far away as Connecticut, Texas and Oregon.

      A present time, six local people are employed in this infant firm, but it is probably that the number will have to be increased to handle the demands on the rapidly growing- industry.


    1945 - June 27 - $37,700 Fire Ruins Recaop Tire Plant
      Smoke Form Burning Rubber Seen For Miles; Cline Building Burned

      The Culver Hi-Speed Recap Tire Co. was destroyed by fire Saturday afternoon is a spectacular fire that was seen for 10 to 15 miles and attraced a large crowd.

      The tire company occupied he building owned by M. R> CLine and the total loss is estimated at $30,700.

      It is believed that the fire from burnig grass which spread to a pile of rubber buffings. This iginited rapibly and the flames soon caught onto the buildings proper. In a short time the fire and spread throughout the wooden structure and was a mass of flalmes.



      Forty cans of tire paint exploded at various times, sending flames and heavy smoke billowing into the sky, while 200 gallons of fuel oil from the furance helped deed the fire. The intense heat kept the spectators at a sonsiderable distance and handicapped the firemen.

      About 250 automobile and truck tires, most of which had been recapped, were destroyed in the fire along with a large supply of camebacks and other recaping supplies and machinery. The flames spread so rapifly that nothing could be saved.

      The Culver Hi-Speed Recap Tire Company is owned by Charles Medbourn and Harry
      Edgington and had began operations Jane 1, 1042

      During the time the firm has been in business it has handled over 200,000 tires. The company's loss is paced at $27,000 with about $14,000 of this amount covered by insurance.

      Tires are now being recapped the the firm's plat in Moticella and Goshen, but it is expected that work will be resumed here in about two weeks.

      Mr. CLine places his loss at $3,700 with part of the amount covers by insurance. Besdies the building her lost a quanity of builind material which had recently been stored in the rear portion of the sturcture. It was this material that blazed up afain Sunday morning and resulted in another call for the fire department.

      Both firee truck were used to fight the fire and the Plymouth Fire Department sent a truch primarily for emergency use in case onnne of the local pieces of appraratus fauled to function.

      One the offities of the fire was that through out the roaring conflagration the American Flag on the roof st the front of the building continued to fly unharmed by licking flames and dense smoke.

      Fortunately there wasn't a high wind at the time of the fire, else the entire business section would habe been endangered.


    There was a picture taken of the some of the fire department members just after the fire. On the back of the framed photo was written by David:
      Fire truck "37" Ford General Truck
      This picture was taken when the Re-cap tire shop burned - where Park and Shop parking is now Year - 1942 [sic] area is the Culver Cove.

      Pictured were left to right:
      David Burns, Fire Chief
      Bob Ewald
      Wayne Von Ehr, Assistant Fire Chief
      Perch Blanchard
      Pete Shaw
      Roland ? (with Bell telephone)
      Harry Young
      Sam Woods
      Harry Edgington, Secretary-Treasurer
      Art Fishburn


    1945 - July 4 - Recao Tire Co. Opens For Business In Spite of DIsastrous Fire.
      In spite of the handicaps resultiing from the war, to say nothing of those brought on by the fire that reuned their plant ten days ago, the Culver Hi=Speed Recap Tire Compnay is doing bsiness the same as usual.

      The fire still was burning on the afternoon of June 23 when the owners of the business Charles Medborn and Harry Edgington, started plans for re-opening the thriving business of keeping automobile and trucks rolling in spite of the rubber sutuation.

      A long sidatance telephone call was made to the company that manustactures the electric molds that recap tires, and telegrams sent to other companies for various supplies and equipment.

      Due to the frieght situation that might hade delayed the shipment of the recap molds, the vital machinery was sent by express from Denver, Colorado.

      Almost all of the machinery equipment and supplies were reuined or destroyed by the fire so it has been necessary to install an entirely new plant.

      The office is being maintained temporarily on East Jefferson street. Part of the equipment is in the cement block part of the old plant while other machinery is is in the Harry Medbourn building a few few to the east.

      The companyplans to construct a new building on its property netween its former plane and the band shop. It is expected that work will start yet this week with Enoch Andrews as contoractor. The building will be 36 feet by 80 feet and will be built of cment blocks and tile.



    1945 - Sep 19 -Recap Company Moses Into New BUilding
      The Culver Hi-Speed Recap Tire CO. has moced into its new and spacious building on East Jefferson, adjacent to its former quarters which were destroyed by fir a few months ago.

      The structure is 60 by 70 feet in size with walls of cement blocks and a fire-risistant roof.

      Across the front are the company's office, and foocies for Overmyer's Heating and Plumbing Co. and Talley's Radio. Shop.

      The balance of the building is being used by the recap company with the molds in a large room, a fireproof stragage room for stick, two buffing nolds in fireproof rooms with fire doors and garage and inside loading area. The heating plant is in a fireproof room and will also heat the adjacent band building.

      Charles Medbourn and Harry Edgington, owners or the recap tire company, have planned the new building so that it will be as fireproof as possinle, both for their on interests and that of their customers.


    From ads in 1946 address is given as 201 East Jefferson St.

    1946 - Aug. 31 - Rob Recap Company of Cash and Tires;

    1946 - Aug 31 - Local Firm to Have DIspaly at State Fair - The CUlver Hi-Speed Recap Tire Co. will have a display in the Manufacturer's Building at Indiana Stae Fair Aug. 30 to Sept 6...

    Re-cappiing during this time period had become a very important main stay for Americans during the rationing era :

    During World War II, rationing was a large part of life on the United States Home Front. Tires were the first items to be rationed.

    Rubber Shortage - The Japanese conquered the prime rubber producing nations of Malaya and the Dutch East Indies in January and March of 1942 respectively, eliminating 91% of America's rubber supply. Since cargo ships were needed for military purposes, the ability to import rubber from South America was reduced. The synthetic rubber program had just begun and didn't produce enough to meet civilian and military needs. Before the war, the US had accumulated a stockpile of crude rubber - but only enough for one year at peace.

    In civilian life, three-quarters of rubber was used for automobile tires, but rubber was also used for gloves, raincoats, boots, waterproof sheets and baby pants, girdles, hot water bottles, bathing caps, garden hoses, and toys. The military required rubber for vehicle and aircraft tires, pontoon bridges, gas and oxygen masks, medical equipment, boots, raincoats, shoes, and even erasers.

    To ensure enough rubber for military and vital civilian purposes, tire rationing was instituted on December 27, 1941. The program ran through December 31, 1945.

    Local Tire Rationing Boards issued certificates for tires or recapping upon application.


    Certificates for new tires were restricted to vehicles for public health and safety (medical, fire, police, garbage, and mail services), essential trucking (food, ice, fuel), and public transportation. Recapping was allowed at the discretion of the local board for any of the above, and occasionally for taxis and defense workers who shared rides. Civilians were allowed to keep five tires per automobile, and were required to surrender any others.

    These goods have been "frozen"; that is, their sale is stopped:
    Dec 11 - Sales of new tires and tubes frozen

    In 1942 the following have been placed under rationing, with the date of the application of the ration order:
    Jan 1 - Sales of new automobiles frozen
    Jan. 5 - New tires.
    Feb. 19 - Sales of recapped tires and tire recapping frozen. Rationing effective the same day.
    Feb. 23 - Recapped tires for trucks.







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