Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Way Cleanse Company

The Way Cleanse Co. was listed at 327-331 West Water Street in the 1915 Sandusky City Directory. Bernard Kern was the manager of the factory. Bernard and his wife Barbara lived on Madison Street in Sandusky. The city directory lists the President of the Way Cleanse Co. as J. J. Dauch, who would go on to be a leader at the Hinde and Dauch Paper Company.

An article in volume 52 of the Public Works Journal reported that the Way Cleanse Co. manufactured gasoline-electric suction street sweepers “emphasizing the necessity of removing germs contained in dust from city streets.” The machines traveled at two to six miles per hour, and provided various speeds for the broom, blower, and auxiliary motors. One machine was reported to have removed 8,000 pounds of litter, sand and dust from 27,000 square yards of pavement, after that same had been cleaned with traditional street cleaning methods.

A photo of a Way Cleanse machine was featured in an early issue of Municipal Engineering.
Bernard Kern was issued a patent for a street sweeping machine on June 17, 1919, while he was residing in Sandusky, Ohio. Three patents which were issued to Mr. Kern are accessible at Google Patents.
An article in the April 26, 1917 issue of the Sandusky Star Journal reported that orders had been received for Way Cleanse street cleaners from Chicago and New Orleans. Branch operations had begun in Illinois and Chicago. An inquiry had been received from Bombay, India, and the government of Austria showed an interest in products from the Way Cleanse Co., but the outbreak of the world war caused them not to pursue a contract. In 1921, the Way Cleanse Co. moved its manufacturing facility to Syracuse, New York. Sadly, by 1922 there were local news reports that the Way Cleanse Co. had gone into receivership.

Mr. and Mrs. Bernard Kern moved to Syracuse, New York when the company moved there. A brief article which appeared in the August 18, 1937 issue of the Sandusky Register stated that Bernard Kern had passed away in Syracuse, and was to be buried at Calvary Cemetery in Toledo, Ohio.


Rudy Swanson said...

It’s amazing to see how an old street sweeper truck looks like. You will never see that kind of truck being used on the street these days. The only time you’ll get a chance to see one is probably when you go to a vintage car show. Modern street sweeper trucks are much greater than this old truck, but still, it served as one of the greatest machines in the past generation.

German Zollinger said...

The old generation of street sweeper trucks somewhat reminds me of long-distance trains in Europe. They really look “swish”; very different from how these trucks look like nowadays. The modern street sweepers are bulkier and equipped with more features. Nevertheless, they carry the same purpose, and that is to keep the streets clean.

German Zollinger @ Total Clean Equipment