A Legacy of Innovation

An American Dream - Four Generations of Skill & Sixty Years of Innovation

We invite you to explore Baldwin’s history, from our family’s arrival to America and our humble beginnings in New Jersey to becoming the leader in artisanal home hardware, security and style.

1945
The Fayermans Arrive In America.

The Fayerman family survive WWII and secure passage to America. As the ship steams into New York harbor, Severin has his first view of Lady Liberty, inspiring his pursuit and eventual realization of the American Dream.

1946
The Origin of Baldwin.

Pooling hard-earned wages, the Fayerman family fulfill their dream of restarting the family business and purchase Baldwin Tool and Die Company.

Baldwin begins by making letter boxes stamped from sheets of brass, recognizing these will be a necessity in the post-war building boom. Sixty years of innovation begins.
1948
The First Innovation.

The first “boost” comes in the form of door knobs, first in metal, then glass and finally brass. With a keen eye on the booming building trades, the company begins to develop a culture of making the necessary as fine and elegant as possible. The Baldwin catalogue doubles in size... from one page to two.

1952
Growing & Expanding.

Baldwin outgrows the Newark location and moves to an industrial development in Hillside, NJ. Uncle John joins Baldwin as its chief salesman and three door knockers signal the knock of opportunity as the young company expands its innovation into that category.

1954
First Trip to the White House.

Baldwin’s gift products become the gift of choice in the Eisenhower White House.

1956
Forged to Last.

Baldwin makes forging (versus casting) the new standard of excellence for its industry. The Berks County work ethic and tradition of craftsmanship led Severin to choose Reading, PA as the new home for Baldwin.

1957
Genius Patterns.

Severin hires a genius pattern maker named Elwood Shaeffer. His expertise of hot metal is renowned and Severin credits his talent and intelligence as a major force in the growth of Baldwin and its profile as an innovator.

1966
Discovering a “Better Way”

Severin discovers a “better way” to make the rim locks used in Colonial Williamsburg — stud welding steel to brass for a much stronger lock. The Baldwin catalogue also expands with lock trims in a rich variety of architectural styles. Architects begin specifying Baldwin locksets, encouraging the company’s spirit of innovation to grow.

1968
A New Era of Mortise Locks

The University of Ohio becomes the springboard into the next innovation. The architect wants to specify a large number of Baldwin rim locks for an expansion project that must meet commercial standards. Baldwin answers with an instant egress feature, thereby ushering in a new era of mortise locking products.

1969
Jackie O’s Request

Jacqueline Kennedy asks Baldwin to design never-to-be-replicated rim locks for her retreat in Martha’s Vineyard.

1971
New Era of Levers & Knobs

Continuing its respectful partnership with architects, Baldwin meets and anticipates their needs with creative product innovations. This is the “era of the Lever” and of the “emblem Knob.” Baldwin finds ways to deliver security with style.

1975
Inspirations from France

Baldwin’s treasury of lock trim designs expands. Severin’s voyages of discovery in France provide creative inspiration and he returns to Reading with rubbings of antique locks for Baldwin’s artisans to bring to new life.

1978
100 New Designs Each Year

“Timeless Craftsmanship” describes Baldwin’s commitment and becomes the company’s tagline. Baldwin is now introducing 100 new designs each year. The “catalogue to watch” has become encyclopedic.

1984
Relationships with Architects

Expanding on its productive partnership with individual architects, Baldwin launches research on the defining characteristics of America’s favorite styles of residential architecture and sets out to create locking hardware to harmonize with each and all.

1985
Baldwin University is Born

The Baldwin University provides professional enrichment for sales associates and showroom staff. Each year, Baldwin’s chief technical specialists and marketing executives provide an update on the current products and services Baldwin offers to partners in the world of architecture, design, building and retailing.

1993
Series of “Industry Firsts”

Baldwin scores another “industry first” in the form of its multiple-patent-protected Lifetime Finish™. Baldwin adapts the vapor deposition process for premium gold pens to protect the surfaces of door hardware. This provides unique protection from the ravages of time, weather and salt air that allow Baldwin to guarantee its creations will remain “Beautiful for 100 years”.

2000
Expanding For Loyalists

Baldwin’s evolution carries it to every room of the home. Bath accessories, lighting and collectible ornaments give Baldwin brand loyalists the assurance that the name they trust to establish “curb appeal” and provide the first design element visitors see and touch can now move to every room of their homes.

2002
Re-Imagining Vintage Finishes

“Everything old is new again,” as Baldwin marries generations of innovations. Archival designs are re-imagined in finishes that capture the look of wrought iron without its vulnerability.

2003
Arts & Crafts Explosion

Baldwin wins design awards for its sophisticated Arts and Crafts lock hardware and introduces a luxurious Estate Bath Collection in a broad spectrum of styles and finishes. Black and Decker acquires Baldwin to become a distinctive luxury brand in its expanding Hardware and Home improvement division.

2004
UL Grants Highest Rating

Baldwin’s mortise locking achievements reach a new level as the respected Underwriters Laboratory grants its highest rating to Baldwin’s hundreds of mortise lock designs. Now they can be specified for multi-unit housing.

2005
Introducing “Archetypes”

Baldwin introduces Archetypes, its first cast bronze designs. The super-premium hardware and accessories illustrate an innovative design mantra “Spirit of Place,” as Baldwin’s designers move beyond line for line reproduction to capture the total ambience of places that inspire.

2006-2009
Haute Couture

Innovation fuels the enrichment of Baldwin’s contemporary portfolio with more than 30 new designs while introducing a new era of modern classic hardware with the ‘Couture’ and ‘Severin Fayermen’ collections.

2010
Electronic locks

Baldwin introduces a line of keyless entry locks with a new, smarter way to connect to your home called Home Connect. Imagine unlocking your door from your cell phone for a guest or receiving a text message letting you know your child just got home from school.

2011
Introducing Reserve

Baldwin introduces Reserve, a new mix & match portfolio that combines Baldwin's legacy of quality craftsmanship with advanced technology to deliver a personalized blend of styles that are more accessible to builders, designers and homeowners.

Since 1946, Baldwin Has Been America's Premier Maker of Hand-Crafted Hardware