From Western New England Vol. 3, no. 1, January, 1913:
The Quigley Furnace & Foundry Co.
The Quigley Furnace & Foundry Company, with plants at present in Chicago and New York, is erecting a large steel, brick and concrete building along the Boston & Maine Railroad tracks in the Brightwood district of Springfield, Massachusetts. When this plant is finally completed, it will employ five hundred men. The company is building furnaces for all industrial requirements, besides doing a general foundry and machinist business. This corporation is a subsidiary concern of the American Locomotive Company, and to have this industry locate in western New England is indeed very gratifying.
The construction work of the new building was begun by the J. J. Prindiville Construction Company last September when the concrete beds for the steel framework were laid. The work at first was somewhat delayed awaiting the arrival of building material, but was renewed during the month of November and has progressed so rapidly that the company will occupy this building by the middle of January.
As soon as the present building is completed, the company will begin the construction of a large machine shop about 300 x 175 feet in dimensions. To begin with, the Quigley Furnace and Foundry Company will only produce furnaces for forging, heating and melting, but as soon as this machine shop is constructed it will engage in the manufacture of coal pulverizers, coal driers and coal conveyors. In all, each department will employ about two hundred and fifty men. A feature of the construction work of the building is the fact that a railroad track was built to the west end of the building, thus enabling the construction company to run a large locomotive crane through the building. With the aid of this crane all of the heavy steel girders and other pieces of steel entering into the construction of the building were hoisted into place. This is the first time that a locomotive crane has ever been used in building construction work in Springfield.
When the foundry building is completed it will be equipped with the most modern machinery for foundry work. The engineers, in designing it, determined to so construct and equip it that it would be a modern plant for years to come. The old time method of handling metal and fuel will be done away with absolutely. The furnaces will be equipped with automatic charging machines, while two large Niles cranes will be used for conveying the molten metal and the heavy castings. The shop will also be equipped with a complete monorail conveying system. A fifteen-ton electric crane will be used for handling materials in the yard.
A feature of the new building will be the cleaning department, where all the castings will be cleaned. The dust will be carried away by ventilating system, and all loose sand and other objectionable material will fall automatically through a steel floor into a sub-cellar. This may be considered a great advance in foundry practice.
The core ovens in the foundry will be equipped in such a manner as to make it possible to fire them with either coke, coal, crude oil or pulverized coal. Another feature will be an air furnace, which will be built and operated for the manufacture of a high grade of metal, such as ammonia and hydraulic castings and other high-pressure work. Besides this special furnace, the melting equipment will consist of one 60-inch Whiting cupola, one 58-inch and one 42-inch cupola. The daily capacity of the present plant will be 50 tons of castings.
All of the officers of the Quigley Furnace & Foundry Company are men prominently connected with the American Locomotive Company. The president is C. K. Lassiter of Richmond, Va., also president of the American Locomotive Company; the vice-president is W. S. Quigley; the treasurer is W. S. Furgeson, and the general manager of the works will be P. R. Ramp.
The industry promises to be one of the largest and most influential in western New England.
From Metallurgical and Chemical Engineering, Vol. XIV, No. 6, March 15th, 1916:
The Quigley Furnace and Foundry Company, Springfield, Mass., has changed its name to the Metals Production Equipment Company. A brass rolling mill department for the production of flat brass has been added, which necessitated a more comprehensive name. The company maintains a New York office at 105 West Fortieth Street.
From Metallurgical and Chemical Engineering, Vol. XIV, No. 12, June 15th, 1916:
High-Temperature Furnace Cement
Before the Philadelphia Foundrymen’s Association Mr. W. T. Quigley delivered recently an interesting experimental lecture on tests of high-temperature furnace cement.
In tests made by the Bureau of Standards on the melting points of the best brands of fire-clay brick, only one fire-clay brick out of 56 samples withstood a temperature of 3135 deg. F. before it melted; the average was considerably below 3000 deg. F. But ability to withstand high temperature is not the only characteristic to be considered. Brick should be selected for the special duty required and should be laid in a material which will provide a bond of equal strength with the brick, having the same coefficient of expansion and contraction and capable of withstanding equal temperature without deterioration.
A mixture of fire clay and water has absolutely no binding strength. This is a serious matter. Usually the falling of an arch, the bulging of a wall or excessive cutting away of a portion of the interior of a furnace can be attributed to a defect in the joints. The fire clay disintegrates or falls out, allowing the heat to work in between and attack the lining and shorten its life. Very often an arch is lost because the clay becomes loosened around one of the roof brick and when it falls the whole structure is weakened.
Mr. Quigley explained the advantages of the use of “hytempite” furnace cement. It forms a lasting union, sets at normal temperatures, that is, air sets, and retains its strength regardless of the heat to which it is subjected. Tests have proven that hytempite furnace cement used as a binder (in place of fire clay) when air set forms a joint as strong as the material united, and that the strength is not impaired but increased by the action of heat.
Hytempite furnace cement withstands the cutting action of flames and is especially adapted for oil furnaces when the gases are generally of high velocity, for furnace roofs, door arches, bung tops, boiler settings, etc. It can also be used as a coating or wash to smoothen and harden the surface of a furnace lining to protect it from abrasion; in fact, it can be used wherever fire-clay bricks are used.
Mr. Quigley made some interesting experiments in electric furnaces of the Electric Heating Apparatus Company, using thermo-electric and radiation pyrometers of the Thwing Instrument Company.
Two pieces of Jersey clay fire brick were put together with a Jersey clay and Pennsylvania clay fire brick with a Pennsylvania clay, both the clay and brick being from the same works in each instance. After dried and heated to 2000 deg. F. they were found to fall apart upon the slightest handling.
On the other hand, when hytempite furnace cement was used in various experiments with different brands of fire-clay bricks, it was found that this cement not only withstands abnormally high temperatures, but that it forms a permanent bond between the pieces united and continues to do so from normal temperatures to as high a temperature as the refractory material united with it will withstand, without injuring the brick or acting as a flux at any temperatures that the brick iself withstands.
From Forging and Heat Treating with which is consolidated The American Drop Forger, Vol. VIII, No. 1, January, 1922:
Refractory Material—The Quigley Furnace Specialties Company, New York, is circulating a 20-page illustrated bulletin in which the use of a refractory material in power plants is described. This material, according to the bulletin, is a plastic refractory material compounded for bonding fire brick, etc. It can be used as a binder wherever fire clay brick, silica brick, tile or granular refractories are used .
From the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance:
Quigley Company History
Quigley Co., a subsidiary of the New York-based pharmaceutical giant Pfizer, is a former manufacturer of insulations and other products for the steel industry and foundries. The company was founded as a small refractory in 1916 by Wirt Quigley, who developed, manufactured and marketed products for use in the iron, steel, glass and other industries throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe and Asia. Quigley’s primary business was a line of specialty refractory materials, such as Roofchrome, slurry created for use in open hearth furnaces.
Quigley Co. was purchased by Chas. Pfizer & Co., Inc. – now known simply as Pfizer – in 1968 as part of the pharmaceutical company’s efforts to diversify through its now-defunct minerals and metals division. In 1991, Pfizer decided to concentrate solely on its health care operations, so Quigley left the refractory business, selling those assets, though Pfizer kept ownership the company.
Products Manufactured by Quigley Company that Contained Asbestos
From around the time of World War II until the early 1970s, Quigley Co. manufactured several products containing asbestos. One of these products was its Insulag cement line, powdered insulation products used to protect furnaces, pipes, boilers and hearths. Workers mixed these products to create a wet substance, which they then applied in coats to protect and seal the high-temperature equipment.
Asbestos, a naturally occurring mineral, was added to these products because it is resistant to heat and fire. The mineral had been added to numerous products since the late 1800s, not just in refractory products, but also in roofing supplies, adhesives, machinery parts, aprons, cigarettes and more.
Of course, we now know that asbestos can cause serious health problems. When asbestos fibers are released into the air – something that happens frequently when asbestos products are being manufactured, applied, or when they age and grow brittle – they can become stuck in a person’s lung tissue and can make breathing difficult. Years later, that exposure can cause serious lung diseases like asbestosis, a chronic, progressive inflammation of the lungs, or mesothelioma, a rare and very serious type of lung cancer for which asbestos is the only known cause.
Some people say companies that used asbestos didn’t do enough to protect their workers’ health. Among the evidence presented in trial against Quigley are documents alleging that the company knew as early as 1959 that exposure to asbestos could cause disease, but the company failed to put a warning on the product. Quigley continued to use asbestos until as late as 1977, when federal regulators banned nearly all uses of the mineral in the United States.
Now I’m wondering if my new Quigley fire brick and possibly other fire bricks contain asbestos. They’re all piled up here in my bed room. Great.