LOUDONVILLE -- The Flxible Company enjoyed a long and storied history in Loudonville.
We've discussed a number of facets of the company in previous columns. This week we note the 1942 Flxible Basketball Team, which finished the season with a 49-1 record, including eight straight wins in a span of only two days at the East Liverpool Tri-State Tournament.
The team included: Karl Kendig, Clarence "Clancy" Shafer,Kay Atterholt, James "Red" McAvene, Coach Bruce Waggoner, Rex Johnston, "Red" Kirchberg, Sonny Siegfried, Bernard Weiss.
As for the company, some of the intriguing pieces of its history were provided in this Facebook post by Mohican Appliance.
The abbreviated history includes:
In 1913, Hugo H. Young and Carl F. Dudte founded the Flexible Sidecar Co. to manufacture motorcycle sidecars with a flexible mounting to the motorcycle. In 1919, the company's name was changed to The Flxible Co. so that the name could be registered as a trademark.
In 1924, Flxible turned to production of funeral cars (hearses), and ambulances, which were primarily manufactured on Buick chassis, but also occasionally on Studebaker, Cadillac and REO chassis, and intercity buses.
In 1947, the company produced the Flxible Clipper highway coach.
In 1953, Flxible absorbed the bus-manufacturing portion of the Fageol Twin Coach Company, and accepted its first order for transit buses from the Chicago Transit Authority.
In 1964, Flxible purchased Southern Coach Manufacturing Co. of Evergreen, Alabama, and built small transit buses at the former Southern Coach factory until 1976.
Flxible was purchased by Rohr Industries in 1970, and a new factory and corporate headquarters were built in Delaware, Ohio, in 1974, with the original factory in Loudonville, Ohio, being used to manufacture parts and sub-assemblies.
Flxible was sold to Grumman Corporation in 1978 and became known as Grumman Flxible. The name reverted to Flxible when Grumman sold the company in 1983 to General Automotive Corporation.
In 1996, Flxible declared bankruptcy and its assets were auctioned. The last Flxible vehicles produced were eight 35 ft (11 m) CNG-fueled Metro buses that went to Monterey-Salinas Transit in Monterey, California, in November 1995.
The former Flxible factory in Loudonville, Ohio, is now a bus maintenance facility for Motor Coach Industries, while the former factory in Delaware, Ohio, is now a parts facility for New Flyer Industries subsidiary North American Bus Industries.
More information on the Cleo Redd Fisher Museum can be found at this link.