Side A: Henry Simon Winzeler, founder of The Ohio Art Company, was born in 1876 in the Winzeler family home just north of this site in Burlington. As a young man, he opened a dental practice in 1900 in the Murbach Building in Archbold on the corner of North Defiance and East Holland streets. Making a dramatic career change eight years later, Winzeler, inspired by an oval mirror in his aunt’s clothing store, started a company to manufacture picture frames. Calling it The Ohio Art Company, venture capital came from Winzeler’s Hub Grocery that he opened in August 1908 located on North Defiance Street. His picture frame company was opened in the Spoerle and Baer Building, a few doors down on the same street. [Continued on other side]
Side B: [Continued from other side] To keep up with the rapidly growing demand for his frames, Henry Winzeler expanded the company into the Opera House and the B.P. Merry Drug Store Building in early 1909. Each of Henry’s business locations were all within this block in Archbold. Then, in about 1911, he wanted to expand his business further and sought a loan from a local bank to refinance the venture. When the bank wanted too much of the business in return, Winzeler turned to private financing and received enough to move The Ohio Art Company to a building on High Street in Bryan where operations continue. In 1914, with the advent of World War I and an embargo in Germany, The Ohio Art Company joined the toy manufacturing business and acquired lithography equipment to print on metal surfaces. Ohio Art is best known for the world famous Etch A Sketch, first manufactured in 1960.