There were a variety of letterheads used by the Company and its officers over the years. Here is a particularly nice one I think. It is from the Private Office of E. J. Gearhart, General Manager of the Gearhart Knitting Machine Co., Clearfield, PA.
There is large detailed illustration in the lower left. I’ve got other letterheads with an illustration of the machine, but nothing quite as complete as this with a stand and accessories. Although I have an entire box of this letterhead, I haven’t found anything in the archives that uses it. Of course this would make sense, since the actual letters are in the hands of the recipients and not the company. Plus, the letterhead says Personal, so I assume is was not intended for mass mailings.
Emory Gearhart had several titles over the years, and he eventually ascended to the highest position in the company, which was General Manager. Most corporate managers holding the titles of CEO or President are also the general managers of their respective businesses, so all these titles were interchangeable for Emory at one time or another. Emory, the General Manager, had overall responsibility for managing both the revenue and cost of the company’s income statement. He also oversaw the company’s marketing and sales functions as well as the day-to-day operation of the business. He also frequently had a hand in coordinating the strategic vision of the company with Joseph, his father and the founder, and John, his brother. Joseph had been the President of the company from its startup in 1888 until 1912, when he handed things over to Emory.
Emory was the youngest of Joseph’s children. So how did he rise to the top? My father told me that some of the other children, Leonard for example, did not have an interest in the company. In addition, Emory went to a prep-school and had some specific education in accounting and business. These two things gave him a pretty good advantage in any rivalries that may have arisen, although I can find no evidence that there was anything close to this kind of competition. The rest of the effort was due to good old fashioned hard work.
I am curious about the lettering. Does anyone happen to know the name of the Typeface (font) for this letterhead? If so, and you can email me or leave a comment, I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks!