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All Stories: 312

Setting the Cornerstone, Building 21 President William L. McKnight, accompanied by chief engineer E. M. Johnson, supervised the installation of the cornerstone in October 1939. The mason worked for the William Murphy and Son Construction Company. The…

Working for Job Betterment The majority of employees in the Saint Paul Plant worked in the factories and received hourly pay. The company sought to offer competitive wages and working conditions comparable to other companies and factories in the…

“I Want to Work at 3M” Many early 3M employees, including William L. McKnight and Archibald G. Bush, had “business” training or high school training in “mechanic arts.” When William Viervering was hired in 1916 to help insure quality…

Women at Work Women have worked at 3M since its early years and have played ever more varied and diversified roles. In 1916, the year the company made its first profits and began to pay dividends on its stock, there were only a handful of female…

3M Engages the Community “By contributing to, and participating in civic projects, 3M and 3Mployees have helped to strengthen the bond of community relationship. The unique characteristic of 3M's contribution to the many communities of which it is…

3M Tapes Many 3M products were put to new uses and others were developed as part of the war effort. Over 100 different types of “Scotch” tapes were developed and manufactured to assist war production. They were used for sealing, identifying…

The People of 3M In July 1941, 3M had 3,133 employees spread among 4 plants and 13 branches and warehouses. There were 1,639 employees in the Saint Paul factory, 372 in the Saint Paul office, and 143 in the Saint Paul research labs. At the end of the…

“Thermo-Fax”  “It all started with writer’s cramp.” When Dr. Carl S. Miller was doing research and taking hand-written notes for his doctorate in physical chemistry at the University of Minnesota, he thought there must be some rapid,…

Machines and Tools: An Important Part of the Production Process In 1928, 3M established its first machine shop in the basement of Building 2. The three machinists and eleven millwrights repaired machines and production units in the abrasives and…

3M INNOVATIONS IN ABRASIVES PRODUCTS Abrasives: The Sandpaper Story 3M began manufacturing a single product, abrasive sandpaper, in 1905 at a plant in Duluth. Sandpaper was still the only product when the company relocated to Saint Paul in 1910. The…

3M INNOVATIONS IN ADHESIVES PRODUCTS Adhesives: The Tape Story Pressure-sensitive tapes are coated adhesives applied to a flexible backing. The company utilized its expertise in coatings and backings to create the first 3M products that shifted away…

In the Beginning an Idea The growth of 3M from its modest beginnings in 1902 to an international corporation was due to vision and persistence. The four company founders had a vision of mining corundum to use as an abrasive mineral, then shifted to…

Industry and Business 3M’s location by the railroad tracks was bounded on the west and south by the commercial streets of Arcade and East Seventh. It was centered within a thriving urban community that mixed industry with the residential…

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Industrial & Commercial Products Salesmen were the first marketers of 3M sandpapers and “Three-M-ite” abrasive cloth. Following the lead of William L. McKnight and Archibald G. Bush, they went to furniture and automobile factory floors to…

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Early Years in Saint Paul When the Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company relocated from Duluth to Saint Paul in 1910, all of the company offices and manufacturing operations were housed in one small building on Forest Street by the railroad…

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The Scope 2015 Material: Corten steel, mirrored stainless steel, 3M dichroic glass, copper-coated rods, 3M-salvaged brick, taconite, quartzite, rubber porous paving, granite Bench 2015 Material: 3M-salvaged stainless steel stair railings A project of…

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Bubblicious 2014 Material: steel, aluminum, solar lighting This sundial-inspired artwork evokes the visual imagery of creatures whose bodies are comprised of 90% or more water - jellies, rays, and mushrooms. A project of the East Side Arts Council…

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Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing initially raised capital by selling stock at $1 per share in 1903. In the early years, it was essentially worthless as the company struggled. 3M paid its first quarterly dividend of 6 cents per share in 1916 and has…

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The 66-foot tall steel flagpole was installed at the corner of Bush and Mendota by the administration building (Building 21) in September 1941. On October 4, 1941, the 3M Club sponsored a flag-raising ceremony. The flag had flown over the U.S.…

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3M constantly improved its machinery and technology to develop, produce, and sell its products. Nonetheless, it was dependent on its people to get the job done. Some of these jobs no longer exist or have been completely automated. Mineral Department…

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