Northern Gases & Supplies, Inc.

A History of Northern Gases

Merle Anderson started in the welding supply business in 1935 in Argos, Indiana.  Soon after, he moved the business to Warsaw, Indiana renaming it Warsaw Welders Supply.

Richard (Dick) Trump began working for Mr. Anderson upon his graduation from high school in 1939.  Warsaw Welders Supply was sold in the fall of 1941.  Merle and Dick operated the business together, until Dick was called to active duty in World War II in August 1942.  After serving his country for a little over three years, Dick returned to work with Mr. Anderson.  Mr. Anderson continued working for the company until 1947, when he decided to again start his own business.

This is how Northern Gases began at its present location.  In 1956, Mr. Anderson installed the original acetylene plant in a chicken house. The garage from the house was moved and attached to the chicken house for the purpose of an office and showroom. When the acetylene pumping equipment was installed, this was considered a rural area and there was not sufficient electricity to run the equipment.  Mr. Anderson rigged a gasoline powered engine, that set outside the building, attached a drive shaft through the wall to the compressor to pump the acetylene.

In 1949 Dick met and married Marie Messmore.  In 1951 their first child was born.  Over the next ten years, the Trumps swelled to a family of five children.  Dick left the welding supply business for a period of three years, and then in 1961 he joined forces again with Mr. Anderson.  Mr. Anderson was in failing health and passed away in August 1962.  At that time Dick acquired Northern Gases.

In order to get the business back on its feet, Dick and Marie decided to run Northern Gases by themselves.  Dick would run the daily routes, and Marie would take care of the walk-in business, and the bookkeeping (and five little Trumps).  Dick would pump acetylene at night to have product for the next day' s route deliveries. Marie (with her co-pilot, Steve, then 11 years old) would make one or two trips a week to South Bend, Indiana, to pick up oxygen.  By 1965 the business had grown enough that Dick and Marie felt they could afford one employee.

The next large undertaking for Northern Gases was the construction of a new acetylene plant.  The vintage 34-cylinder manifold was replaced with a new Rexarc acetylene plant in 1974.  The year 1975 brought destruction of the old acetylene plant/office building and construction of a new office/showroom and cylinder maintenance building.  This building also housed the route trucks. By 1978 we were getting our oxygen in bulk liquid form and filling the cylinders ourselves.

The summer of 1985 found Northern Gases bursting at the seams.  A larger office with a self-service showroom was built to display all the items in stock to make the welder's life easier.  A further expansion of that building was done in 1993 and the high pressure filling and liquid filling facilities were moved to the new building.  Our expansion was not contained to only Pierceton; in 1988 Northern Gases returned to Warsaw, and opened a satellite store in Warsaw to better serve the market.  Overwhelming acceptance of this satellite facility brought construction of a new and larger store in 1998 to take care of the growing Warsaw market.

Dick Trump, who started his family's future on May 19, 1939 with Mr. Anderson, passed away in July 1991.  He left Northern Gases behind for the family to carry on the tradition of service and quality that he and Mr. Anderson worked so hard to build.  Marie is still greatly involved in the day to day management of Northern Gases, and the second generation of Trumps has begun to work in the business.  Son Steve joined in 1971; son Chuck in 1974; son-in-law Roger in 1976; and daughter Mary in 1979

Today, Northern Gases has approximately 11 other employees.  Northern Gases began by filling only acetylene cylinders. Presently we fill our own acetylene, oxygen, argon, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, mixed gases, Mapp™ Gas, and propane.

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