Rochester Can Company is formed by Malcolm E. Gray. During his tenure at Rochester Can Company, the business grew to several hundred employees manufacturing over 500 products under the trade name “Iron Horse,” including army trench helmets during World War I.
Malcolm E. Gray was a prolific inventor and held patents on several products; however his most significant contribution was the implementation and national recognition of the five day work week. Malcolm announced to his family on Christmas day, 1921 that he would soon begin the 5 day week for his employees. He made that formal on January 2, 1922.
On June 30, 1930, Malcolm resigned from the presidency and became chairman of the firm’s board of directors. He left management of day to day operations to his two sons-in-law, Rodney Sage Hatch and William Easton.
William H. Gray, brother of Malcolm E. Gray founded Gray Metal Products, Inc. with operations at 30 Carlton Street, Rochester, NY with a warehousing facility located in the Rochester suburb of Webster, NY. Customer base was originally sheet metal contractors sold in the state of New York. William H. Gray is awarded several patents related to the gutter industry. Sons William J. Gray and Donald Gray would work along with their father William H. Gray.
Control of Gray Metal Products goes to brothers William J. and Donald. During this time, William J. Gray would recognize the value of shipping to HVAC wholesale distributors and discontinue contractor direct sales. This would widen distribution channels and open up greater volume opportunities throughout New York. Eventually, William would buy out his brother Donald entirely and gain exclusive control over the business. Also during this time, William’s youngest son, Richard E. Gray Sr. would mentor under his father’s guidance in the business.
Richard E, Gray Sr. convinces his father William J. Gray to purchase a Slear and add on a Coil room to Carlton Street for steel processing, thereby changing the factory from a Sheet fed plant to a Coil fed plant. This strategy would set the stage for full scale manufacturing and expansion efforts throughout the Northeast.
William J. Gray passes on and control of Gray Metal Products, Inc. goes to (son) Richard E. Gray Sr. & (daughter-in-law)
Carole L. Gray. Shortly thereafter, expansion into the hardware market would necessitate the need for another addition to Carlton Street for warehouse space.
Carlton Street location is sold to Rochester Museum of Natural Science and complete production and operations are relocated to an industrial complex located at 166 Norman Street in Rochester.
Gray Flex Systems, a full line manufacturer of insulated flexible duct, is founded by William R. Gray of Rochester, NY. Business operations are temporarily relocated to Woodland, NC and eventually relocated permanently to Coats, NC in 1992.
William R, Gray is awarded his first of many patents related to the HVAC Industry.
The Gray family acquires a small competitor by the name of Nova Industries out of West Point, Virginia, renaming the company Gray Metal South, Inc. Current principal owners and operators are Marguerite Gray-Hearn & Joseph E. Gray.
Snap-Rite is founded by William R. Gray out of Coats, North Carolina. Operations are relocated to Lake Park, Georgia in January 2000.
Snap-Rite acquired a competitor by the name of Automated Ductwork Manufacturing (ADM) out of Cleveland, Ohio on February 15th, 2000.
Majority interest in Gray Metal Products is passed on to Carole L. Gray after the passing of Richard E. Gray Sr, with sons Richard E. Gray Jr. and Martin E. Gray acting as managing principals.
Gray Metal South in Humboldt, TN is founded by Joseph E. Gray. Operations become official February 15th, 2008.
Opportunity is defined as “A favorable or advantageous combination of circumstances”.
The Gray family has had the good fortune to recognize, create and seize upon opportunities for over
a century now. These opportunities have not come to them without the dedicated support of family, friends,
employees and community. We stand here today because several people believed in themselves, their future
and each other. The Gray corporate family history dates back to the early 1900’s. Malcolm E. Gray, founder
of Rochester Can Company would begin what would become a century long commitment to the sheet metal industry. Malcolm was a prolific inventor, most notably recognized for his invention of the five day work week in 1922. His dedication to manufacturing was an inspiration to his brother, William H. Gray, who started a copper gutter hanger company, of which he held a patent on, under the company name of William Gray & Sons. William H. Gray would then later begin his transition into manufacturing of furnace pipe and fittings, incorporating in 1932 under the name, Gray Metal Products. Gray Metal’s modest beginnings would take place at what has become affectionately referred to as “Carlton Street” by our family. His son, William J. Gray, would continue on in his father’s footsteps, learning the business so that one day he, too, could pass it on to his son; our father, Richard E. Gray Sr. This would begin what can be defined today as our family’s legacy.
When our father inherited Gray Metal Products in 1974, he would immediately recognize the priceless value of our mother’s own inherent talent which would prove to parallel his own love and dedication to the business. Together, they would grow the business, dedicating long hours, with immeasurable sacrifice, working alongside employees; no task beneath them. Our parents would turn Carlton Street into a learning institution, imparting on each of us a sense of self, direction and confidence; creating what would one day be the foundations necessary for our own success and contributions to the family legacy.
With the growth and expansion efforts of Gray Metal Products, came opportunity for all of us to flourish in our own way. Our mother and father have been instrumental in all of our opportunities, encouraging us and believing in us at times more than we probably believed in ourselves. Our father was, in particular, the biggest enthusiast we had. He embraced and encouraged every dream, every goal and every step forward. He unified us in a single direction and gave us a feeling of independent accomplishment. He knew when to let go and when to step in. His love of what he did was contagious and inspirational. Today, from its’ modest beginnings at Carlton Street, the Gray Family collectively owns six manufacturing locations with substantial distribution in 30 states. It is for this reason, on this day, February 15 2008, that we give honorable mention to our mother, Carole L. Gray and dedicate this business endeavor, to our truest enthusiast, Richard E. Gray Sr., who believed in his family enough to create opportunity.
Our present and continued objectives are to supply our distributors with a product line that is ever consistent in exceptional quality, and delivered expeditiously at a fair market price. We will always aspire to build partnerships with our customers, employees and suppliers by pledging a system of conduct that enthusiastically embraces values that foster trust, loyalty and long standing relationships. We commit to doing this by making the following pledges:
To Our Customer...
We pledge to continually invest in new automation and improvement techniques so we can provide you with a top quality product to allow you to remain competitive in the marketplace and to always keep our word to you. We promise to make changes and developments in products that reflect the changes and demands that arise in the marketplace. Above all, we promise service to you that represents our true level of appreciation for the opportunity to be your supplier.
To Our Employees...
We pledge to provide each employee a safe environment to work in and to recognize each individual accomplishment of exceptional service. We promise to reward service and achievement with equitable market wages and benefits. We also pledge to use hiring practices of merit from within to assure that no individual talent or dedication goes unrecognized.
To Our Suppliers...
We pledge to always remain loyal to your products and services considering we, too, are kept competitive and serviced with appreciation.
To Our Environment...
We pledge to always act responsibly to our environment and to be pro-active and not re-active.
To Our Competitors...
To always compete with integrity, fairness and honesty.
And finally we make this pledge to ourselves...
We promise ourselves and each other to always support the Gray principles of good business ethics, superior product service and quality and dedication to achieve excellence in whatever we do.
Reload GRAY METAL SOUTH, INC.
© Copyright 2002 - 2004 Gray Metal South, Inc., All Rights Are Reserved