"Harry Gerstner made his first tool chest while working as a pattern-maker. It took him a year to design and make, as he only spent evenings working on it. Some of his fellow workers commented on how well made it was, and this got him thinking that there may be a demand for his chests, as they were better and different than anything on the market at that time. So, in 1906 while the Wright Brothers were perfecting their first airplane, Harry Gerstner used the 100 dollar bonus from his job and founded his own tool chest company. He picked up his first orders by making evening door to door sales calls on his many friends and acquaintances.
The mid 1960's saw the last of H. Gerstner & Sons competition as all the other companies either closed down or moved on to making other products. As the twenty-first century draws near, H. Gerstner & Sons stands alone in maintaining over 102 years of quality manufacturing of wooden tool chests.
H. Gerstner & Sons has always kept quality as the number one priority in establishing the company's reputation. The tool chests were never built to be beautiful, but H. Gerstner & Sons products have a certain "look," and their inherent quality has come to be appreciated as a truly "American" product. The name Gerstner has been well established to mean the highest quality in wooden tool chests, and the use of a Gerstner Chest was, and still is, evidence that a craftsman takes genuine pride in himself and his work.
H. Gerstner & Sons is still a family owned business today. H. Gerstner & Sons started making tool chests exclusively, but throughout the years many other products have been introduced by the company. Today though, tool chests are still the most popular item in the Gerstner line. People have discovered that in addition to their use for tools, Gerstner Chests are ideal as jewelry chests, hobby chests or because of their unique styling they can be used as ideal accent pieces for home decor. The distinctive styling of Gerstner Chests has had a definite influence on other Gerstner products such as: attaché cases, collectors chests, fly tyer cases, and cigar humidors to name a few."
Kimberly Campbell Brown
Vice President of Sales & Marketing, daughter of John H. Campbell and great granddaughter of Harry Gerstner