The Wilson Bohannan Lock Company (Marion, Ohio) has been manufacturing padlocks for almost 160 years. This makes them America’s oldest continuous padlock maker. The founder Wilson Bohannan received his first padlock patent (No. 27,883) on April 17, 1860. In that patent, his first name is spelled ‘Wilsin’, while in subsequent patents (Nos. 46,539, 55,047, 55,048, 67,401) his first name is spelled ‘Wilson’.
In the same year that his first patent was issued, he opened a small workshop in the rear of his Brooklyn home manufacturing padlocks. Outgrowing his home workshop, the company moved into larger quarters on Broadway and Kossuth Place, Brooklyn, New York in (or before) 1869. The company since then has moved its business in 1926 to Marion, Ohio where it currently is operating.
As times changed, so did WB padlocks. Switch locks were now outdated and the competition was already producing pin-tumbler padlocks. By the late 1930’s, WB introduced its first “pin tumbler” mechanism padlock. This new padlock allowed for many more key changes and, for the first time, master keyed systems were offered.
The market for padlocks was also changing. New highways filled with freight trucks were quickly absorbing electric railways. Now the focus was on Public Utilities, and they remain to this day, the largest consumer of WB padlocks. By the late 1950’s WB introduced its first extruded solid brass padlock. This new weather-resistant padlock was designed for outdoor utility usage and are still being produced today.
According to padlocks.com; en.wikipedia.org. Source of photos: internet