A brief history
1915-21Records show Charles E. Phipps brokering train car loads of concrete sand and
brick sand to Cleveland contractors such as Samuel Austin & Son Co., Bolton &
Pratt, and Sam. W. Emerson Co. as well as manufacturers such as The American
Steel & Wire Co and U.S. Gypsum.
1921Charles E. Phipps and partners incorporate The Chas. E. Phipps Company and
locate at 7700 Harvard Avenue Cleveland.
1923Newspaper headline “Charles E. Phipps is Concrete Silo Pioneer in Cleveland” heralded construction of five precast concrete silos adjacent to the Pennsylvania Railroad line. “Upon arrival of the cars on the elevated siding, each is placed over a pocket wherein is located a shuttle. Material (sand, slag, cinders, and crushed stone) dropping upon the shuttle is taken up by the conveyor buckets and carried to a track above the silos, where it is taken to the silo reserved for the particular material…” Chutes on the opposite side allowed trucks to be filled in less than a minute with materials destined for a Cleveland concrete or masonry project.
1933Step-son Melbourne W. Phipps joins firm after graduating from
1935-1941In addition to aggregates and cement, Phipps sells lime, brick tile, sewer pipe,
and “Coupon Gas Oil.” Upon death of Charles Phipps in 1935, Mel Phipps
1942-45Mel Phipps serves stateside in the U.S. Army procuring war materials.
After discharge as a major, he returns to Phipps which had been
managed by 4-5 employees.
1945-60’sMel Phipps handles sales and Joseph Juszkiewicz, a U.S. Navy veteran,
oversees operations. A 4000 SF warehouse replaces the silos, and Phipps
distributes expansion joint fillers, water-proofing, rolled insulation, plus sand
Mid 1960’s-1979Phipps becomes one of Tremco’s first U.S. distributors of its
construction sealants, and the product line becomes Phipps’
largest for several years. Twinsburg based Set Products names
Phipps as one of its first distributors for concrete repair products
and construction grouts.
1978Mel Phipps hires Gino Cribari as a driver and warehouseman, Gino is still with
Phipps in 2020.
1979-83David Thomas, nephew of Mel Phipps, joins the firm as its 6th
employee. In addition to serving as vice-president of sales, Thomas
begins to purchase the company. In 1980 Trina Hyatt joins Phipps in
operations and inside sales, and she continues with Phipps in 2020.
1983Phipps joined the Associated Construction Distributors International, a group
of North American distributors of construction products and equipment that
buy cooperatively and share best business practices.
1984Phipps becomes the Sika distributor in Cleveland. Upon Mel
Phipps’ death in August, David Thomas assumes the presidency.
1993Phipps begins to lease space in Waterville and then Toledo to service
customers in NW Ohio.
1995Phipps opens its current Perrysburg Ohio office and warehouse.
2000Phipps moves its Cleveland warehouse and office to 4560 Willow Parkway in
2006Phipps opens a branch in Canton Ohio under the leadership of
Ben Brown, step-son of David Thomas, Bill Jandecka, and Brad Hicks.
2007Phipps begins renting floor preparation equipment, riding concrete trowel
machines, and other specialty equipment to contractors.
2015Phipps launches its first e-commerce website
2017In Cleveland Phipps secures the adjacent office and warehouse
at 4570 Willow Parkway.
2019After 16 years at Phipps holding multiple roles in sales and
management, Ben Brown, stepson of David Thomas becomes
the companies 4th President.