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Macklanburg-Duncan Company got its start in manufacturing and marketing in 1920 when Louis August Macklanburg (1888 1965) began building a new home. Frustrated with existing weather stripping products available for use in the house, the recently discharged World War I veteran developed a springy, tempered brass material for sealing his doors and windows. In association with his first partner and lone salesperson, H. M. Duncan, Macklanburg began to manufacture and to market the invention under the name Numetal, and in 1920 it became the primary product for the home products company that he started at 211 West First Street in Oklahoma City.

Macklanburg Duncan Co., architectural rendering

The company soon added a variety of items to its line, and Macklanburg's father, Rudolph, along with his sister, Alma, and his three brothers, Adolph, Gustave, and Robert, joined the operation. Aggressive marketing increased business. By 1930 operating from its new headquarters at 123 West Twenty-third Street, the company had one hundred employees and an international market. In 1950 continued growth prompted the company to move once again, this time to 4041 North Santa Fe Avenue, where it remained. Upon Louis Macklanburg's death on May 31, 1965, the company employed 550, and its plant covered four hundred thousand square feet.

Macklanburg-Duncan remained under the sole ownership of the Macklanburg family as it developed a worldwide marketing presence with company divisions of weatherproofing materials, adhesives and coatings, tools, floor and carpet trim, metal moldings, and builder's hardware. In 2000 the General Electric Corporation bought Macklanburg-Duncan, absorbed the adhesives and coatings division, and reorganized the rest of the company under the name M-D Building Products.


BIBLIOGRAPHY: Daily Oklahoman (Oklahoma City), 1 June 1965 and 20 September 1970. "Macklanburg-Duncan," Vertical File, Research Division, Oklahoma Historical Society, Oklahoma City. Susan Wallace and Tamara J. Hermen, Oklahoma City: A Better Living, A Better Life (Montgomery, Ala.: Community Communications, 1997).

Bobby Weaver

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