PHOTOS: The Faces of Gougler Machine

Hundreds of Kent residents worked at C.L. Gougler Machine Co. throughout the years. Do you recognize any of them?

Perhaps the most visible element of the C.L. Gougler and Machine Co. will disappear into the pages of history today.

, which has towered over Lake Street for nearly 100 years, is scheduled today for some time between noon and 1 p.m. The demolition is closed to the public.

Hundreds more of the less visible yet arguably more important faces of the factory have already gone from this world, though some remain.

Gougler industries was one of the largest and most successful manufacturing operations in Kent's history. At its peak, C.L. Gougler and Machine ran 10 different plants across Kent and employed 1,500 people.

You can take a virtual tour of the empty factory, before demolition started in December 2011, by scrolling through .

In recognition of , today Kent Patch publishes a select few photos from the archives of the company's successor, Furukawa Rock Drill USA. FRD USA, the last remnant of the Gougler companies, has dozens of photos from the factory's history, which stretches back to around 1920. It would have been impossible to scan and publish them all, so we picked some of the clearest photos to run.

Some — almost none — of the photos have scribbles of information on the back to provide some indication as to who was in the photo and when it was taken. Others have only the interior of a hot factory in Kent and the decades-old faces shown to identify them.

That's where you come in. If you can identify any of the faces shown in these photos, please do so in the comments below by indicating the picture number.

If you have photos in a shoe box or in a photo album of friends, relatives or yourself during the time when the Gougler plant was a hotbed of activity, please share them with us by clicking on the "Upload Photos" button.

Help us remember a time in Kent's history when manufacturing was king.

Hank April 25, 2012 at 11:46 AM
Amazing Photos! Thanks for posting them. We, The Kent Historical Society (237 E. Main St.), would be happy to scan (digitize) photos anyone has of Gougler Machine. Call us at 330 678-2712. We will get back to you and arrange a time for you to come in with your photos.
Teresa K. April 25, 2012 at 01:11 PM
Loved the pictures!!!! thank you for posting... I would love to see more if PATCH has them.
Brad Bolton April 25, 2012 at 02:35 PM
Didn't see much eye protection back then! Great photos.
Kasha Legeza April 25, 2012 at 05:50 PM
Cool old photos ... here's hoping Kent Patch readers can ID and/or date some of them!
Donna Sitko April 25, 2012 at 10:34 PM
I'm pretty sure the lady sitting down in #15 is my Aunt Mary Creary Strayer. Checking with family to verify
Le'ah Keturah-Sarah Krzywkowski April 25, 2012 at 10:49 PM
I love old pictures and the stories and history behind them. It looks like Kent was an interesting and special place back then. ( I also noticed that there was no eye protection by the way). Kent should never give up it's history, no matter how innovative and modern it aspires to be, the cities that retain the wealth of their rich heritage seem to have the most success. I also noticed something different in everyone's eyes....something you would be pressed to find these days.
Matt Fredmonsky April 26, 2012 at 12:00 AM
Thanks for checking Donna!
Matt Fredmonsky April 26, 2012 at 12:01 AM
Yes, please, everyone if you can ID someone or think you know who they are please share. I think it makes the photos all the more special if we can put names to faces.
Kasha Legeza April 26, 2012 at 05:14 AM
I had the same thought about "something different in everyone's eyes" -- and felt a pang of sadness that "that look" seems to be of a bygone era!
Kasha Legeza April 26, 2012 at 05:18 AM
Let's hear it for history sleuthing!
Matt Fredmonsky April 26, 2012 at 03:31 PM
Looks like a mix of pride, confidence and determination to me.


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