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Keystone Saw Works - H. Disston & Sons, Inc. - Phila., PA


Building a Business - Employees




Jack Bradshaw was a saw grinder employed by Henry Disston, when the saw business was in its infancy.  Outside of the fact that Jack was a saw grinder, he was English, and a wee bit too fond of his ale, and of stopping out after pay day.

Henry Disston loved his workmen and treated them on a big and generous principal, but old Bradshaw was a very trying case.  Finally, the patience of the master workman was tried beyond the limit and he was forced to discharge his otherwise efficient workman.  A few days after, as Mr. Disston was making his usual daily round of the saw shop, he came across old Jack working very complacently at his grind-stone.

This cased the boss to sharply remark:  "Jack, what are you doing here?  Didn't I discharge you and tell you to clear-out?"

"Yes, replied Jack, "but if you don't know when you have a good workman, I know when I have a good boss."

On down through grandfather, father , and son, it has been a natural development in the policy for master worker and his men to be on friendly terms.

Significant of this fact, as typifying the personal integrity, experience, and continuity of quality methods, is the following employment record:

21 men

50 to 60 years

80 men

40 to 50 years

180 men

30 to 40 years

330 men

20 to 30 years

609 men

10 to 20 years

Working beside the above 1220 men, are more than 2300 younger saw and tool makers of highest skill, very largely the grandsons of the older men.  With the entire organization of over 3600, Disston progressiveness has been made a life habit

Saw Talk by Horace Disston - The Disston Crucible, May 1920

Learn how. Discover why. Build better.

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