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MASTER PRODUCTS CO.

THE MASTER PRODUCTS CO. is a long-lived Cleveland-based manufacturer of washers, bushings, and other stamped metal products. The company was founded in 1919 in a 4,400 square foot facility at 6400 Park Avenue in the BROADWAY-SLAVIC VILLAGE neighborhood, where it is still located, although its facilities have expanded to 66,000 square feet.

The company was incorporated in the first half of 1919 with an initial capitalization of $10,000, which was increased to $50,000 in the second half of that year. Among its founders was Walter A. Bohn, born in Cleveland, July 30, 1884, a son of Edward Bohn and Julia Boetcher, both of whom were born in Germany. In 1910, he married Eva May Thomas, who was born in Cleveland, April 16, 1884, a daughter of John Thomas and Margaret Scobie. During WORLD WAR ONE, before founding Master Products Co., Bohn had been a foreman at Vital Manufacturing Co. in Cleveland. In the 1930s, Bohn filed several patents for bearings and bearing casings, as well as for a "direct reading micrometer."

Also among the founders was Cornelius G. Walters, a veteran of World War One, born in Cleveland Sept. 15, 1895, a son of John Walters, a cigar-maker, and his wife, Eva. In 1922, Cornelius Walters married Anastasia Dister. In 1925, Walters filed a patent for a detachable spring hinge for screen doors. In 1928, Cornelius Walters was joined at Master Products Co. by his brother Carl J. Walters (b. Aug. 21, 1891), also a WWI veteran, who had worked as a sales manager for Lamson & Sessions Co. in Cleveland.

The company expanded quickly during the 1920s, frequently advertising in the Plain Dealer for punch press operators and diemakers ("first-class only"). By 1929, the company was hiring for day and night shifts. The company was able to sustain its operations even during the Great Depression; in 1934, the company employed 65 workers.

Bohn died at his Lakewood home Aug. 1, 1963. Cornelius Walters died in 1972. Carl Walters retired in 1968, and died in 1975. As of 2014, several descendants of the firm's founders remain in management.