Lamson and Goodnow moving to Westfield

WESTFIELD – Mayor Daniel M. Knapik announced over the weekend that the oldest cutlery manufacturer in the United States, Lamson and Goodnow, will relocate their manufacturing and retail operations from Shelburne Falls to Mainline Drive in Westfield and will be renovating an existing facility to meet the needs of their operation.
“The leadership of Lamson and Goodnow is modifying their manufacturing and retail operations to fit the current market,” said Knapik. “My team and I have been working with the directors of the company for a number of months now to identify the optimum facility for them in our city. Lamson and Goodnow is showing great faith in Westfield and its residents by making this type of investment in our community.”
“We are very excited about the plans for their operation in Westfield,” said Knapik. “Our city has a lot to offer in a skilled workforce, positive economic environment and location to major transportation routes. Westfield will certainly benefit from having another world class manufacturing operation, creating good jobs, located in our community.”
According to The Greenfield Recorder, Lamson and Goodnow Chief Operating Officer James Pelletier said that on Thursday he signed a lease, which takes effect on April 1.
The lease was signed a day after 12.5 acres of Lamson’s 18-acre property and buildings were sold for $1.3 million to businessman John Madocks of Ashfield.
Last fall, after the cutlery manufacturer filed for bankruptcy protection, the entire manufacturing complex was put up for sale, to help pay off creditors. Lamson still retains about five acres, a factory and the outlet store, with upstairs offices. Pelletier told The Recorder that the rest of Lamson’s Shelburne Falls property “will likely go up for sale very soon” and that he hopes whoever buys the outlet store might be willing to keep the Lamson & Goodnow retail shop going.
“We searched high and low until we found the right property,” said Pelletier. “It’s centrally located, for our key suppliers, closer to the Mass. Pike and to Bradley Airport. It was the right kind of facility that suits our needs.”
Currently, 25 to 30 people are working at the 45 Conway St. facility.
In 1837, Lamson & Goodnow opened shop on the Shelburne side of the village, across the Deerfield River, then moved to the Buckland side during the 1850s. During the Civil War, the cutlery made bayonets for Union soldiers and employed up to 500 workers. The company also made scythes and other tools.
Lamson & Goodnow filed for Chapter 11 protection from creditors in August, while the company reorganized and formed a new business management plan. According to the bankruptcy petition, the company owed $1 million on a U.S. Small Business Administration loan, about $2 million to Newtek Small Business Finance Corp., and about $450,000 to at least 20 unsecured creditors.
“We are very pleased with Lamson & Goodnow relocating to Westfield,” said Knapik. “They have a long and prominent history. This kind of manufacturer is just what we want in Westfield.”

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