August 26, 2014
Bead Industries reached its 100-year anniversary in August 2014. In May the company commemorated the occasion with a centennial celebration at its Milford, Conn., facility, which was attended by more than 150 people including current employees and their families, board members, former employees, vendors, customers, colleagues, and fellow manufacturers. Legislators and local officials also were in attendance to make speeches and present proclamations.
To mark the anniversary, the company has released a book entitled Bead Industries: Five Generations of Bright Ideas. The collection-based publication gives an account of life at the company through the years, with more than 100 pages reflecting its industrial history and legacy. It recounts the beginnings of the company and the development of its cold-forming process known as swaging, which led to the manufacture of Bead Chain®. This is complemented by archival documents such as the company's first stock certificate issued in 1914 and historic photographs of its facilities and employees during the war years.
Today the company comprises two divisions (Bead Chain and Bead Electronics) and a wholly owned subsidiary (McGuire Mfg. Co.) Founded in 1914, the firm developed and manufactured Bead Chain for electric light pulls.