Biographical / Historical
Henry R. Worthington (December 17, 1817-December 17, 1880) was an innovator in the world of 19th century steam pumps earning patents for a direct-acting steam pump (US Patent no. 6274) and a duplex steam pump (US Patent 116,131). Initially, Worthington partnered with William H. Baker to found the Worthington & Baker Works in 1845, with the works based in Brooklyn. Worthington's company began by producing various pumps for naval craft, including pumps installed on the
, the first ironclad ship of the US Navy. After Baker's death, Worthington changed the name of his business to the Henry R. Worthington Corporation and expanded into the production of water works pumps for major cities. Worthington pumps gained international acclaim at World's Fairs in the latter half of the 19th century. Fountains at the Centennial Exposition of 1876 and Columbian Exposition of 1892 and the hydraulic pumps for the Eiffel Tower's elevators at the Exposition Universelle of 1900 were all powered by Worthington products.
In 1899, Worthington was purchased and merged into the International Steam Pump Company, along with the Blake and Knowles Steam Pump Company, Laidlaw-Dunn-Gordon, the Snow Steam Works, the Deane Steam Pump Company and several smaller works. After the acquisition of these different works, the International Steam Pump Company's product line expanded to include gas engines and mining machinery.
International Steam Pump reverted to the Worthington name, first as Worthington Pump and Machinery Corporation (1916-1952) and then as the Worthington Corporation (1952-1967). It was also during this time when Worthington relocated its main works from Brooklyn to Harrison, New Jersey in 1917. All the while, the company continued to produce hydraulic engines, gas engines and water works pumps. Through various mergers the company also diversified into refrigeration and air conditioning. In 1967, the Worthington Corporation merged with the Studebaker Automobile Manufacturing Company, becoming Studebaker-Worthington.