J.A. Baldwin was one of the first to recognize the importance of improving mobile filtration. He designed a cartridge lube filter and began production in Wisconsin in 1936.
By 1952, Baldwin needed to expand in order for J.A. Baldwin Manufacturing Company to compete for the big orders, but was unable to do so in Wisconsin.
At this time, Kearney, Nebraska, had an idle airfield with hangars that had been used in World War II as a base for the big B-29 planes taking off for Europe.
The company moved to Kearney in 1953 to take advantage of the central location and the available transportation. Once in Kearney, Baldwin Filters began operation in a 24,000 square foot building with nine employees.
By the end of the year, Baldwin employed 26 people and occupied three buildings.
In 1963, Baldwin purchased 42 acres of the former Kearney Air Base and began construction. Shortly after moving part of the operation into the new building, a fire destroyed the original plant and the company offices.
Also lost in the fire were the blueprints of all the filters and the machines designed to produce them. Within six months, J.A. reconstructed the needed blueprints and returned the company to full production.
Between 1964 and 1981, the Baldwin Filter plant was expanded nine times to accommodate the rapid expansion.
1936 Opens in Wisconsin
1953 Moves to Kearney, Nebraska
1981 Becomes a part of CLARCOR
1989 Acquires facilities in the United
Kingdom and Europe
1991 Expands with a new manufacturing
facility in Gothenburg, NE
1994 Acquires a distribution and
manufacturing center in Mexico
1995 Purchases manufacturing facility
1995 Buys Hastings Filters and expands
its U.S. base
1999 Builds a 110,000 square foot
distribution center at the Kearney
2007 Acquires manufacturing facility