Side A: The Champion Paper Company began production here April 15, 1894, with nine employees under the direction of Peter G. Thomson (1851-1931), a Cincinnati businessman, who had incorporated the firm in November 1893. Thomson, previously a bookseller and publisher, recognized that recent progress in half-tone printing would increase the demand for coated paper. In 1891 he purchased 187 acres west of the Great Miami River to develop into subdivisions. When a recession contributed to a housing slump, Thomson used some of the land along Seven Mile Pike (now North B Street) to build the plant which coated paper produced by other paper mills in Hamilton. The first coated paper was shipped from the mill May 4, 1894.
Side B: By 1900, Thomson had doubled the capacity of the original Hamilton plant five times. In June 1902 the company manufactured paper for the first time in Hamilton, opening a new paper mill simultaneously with a rebuilt coating plant. By 1910, the Hamilton mill was regarded as the largest coated-paper mill in the world. During its first 20 years, the mill survived two floods (March 1898 and March 1913), two fires (December 1901 and March 1913), several business cycles, numerous technological advances, and market changes. Under Thomson, the company also opened mills in North Carolina and Texas. As the mill observed its 100th anniversary April 15, 1994, it was part of the Champion International Corporation, a leading paper and wood products manufacturer.
Sponsors: Champion International, Greater Hamilton Chamber of Commerce, and The Ohio Historical Society