Ideal Gas Shutoff / D. G. C. Trap & Valve Co., Inc., 148 2nd Ave., New York, 2013
D. G. C. Trap & Valve Co. dates back to Albert Cryer & Co. located in 1894 at 96 Centre St., New York City. Cryer's business was providing heating equipment, and this business over time became the Cryer Return Line System Co., which city directories list in 1906 at 17 Park Row, New York City.
The Cryer Return Line System was an innovation in heating equipment for steam radiators. The publication, A History of the Singer Building Construction; Its Progress from Foundation to Flag Pole, edited by O. F. Semsch. New York, 1908, includes this description, "There are about 1,600 steam radiators in the Singer Building. They have a superficial area of 66,234 square feet, or 1.52 acres. On a day with the temperature at zero, this surface will give out 17,883,180 heat units, equivalent to 537 H.P., which means the burning of one ton of coal per hour, if direct steam is used. It is possible, however, to use exhaust steam from the engines and without appreciable 'back pressure' to retard their action. This is accomplished by the Cryer Return Line System, which solves the problem of circulating exhaust steam for heating through such a large number of radiators and for such great distances without back pressure on the engines. This system is very simple: it consists of a Cryer valve placed on the return end of each radiator, connecting into the return piping, on which a vacuum is maintained by means of vacuum pumps in the engine room. The water of condensation and the air are drawn freely through the Cryer valves to the vacuum pumps, which discharge to an air-separating tank, where the air is liberated and the water placed in condition to be again used in the boilers. The Cryer valve holds the steam in the radiators until it is condensed, allowing only the water and air to pass into the return pipe, distinguishing absolutely between the three."
Andrew G. Paul (1840-1920) is credited with inventing exhaust-steam heating using a vacuum pump to separate the water and air returned from a radiator for reuse. A branch of the Paul System Co. was located in New York in the early 1900s. Both Albert A. and Thomas B. Cryer were directors of the Paul System Co. Albert A. Cryer is also listed as a general manager and vice president of this company. The New York office seems to have functioned mostly to license the Paul patents and to protect the patents from infringement.
The Cryer valves were an integral part of this system, and the Cryer Return Line System Co. was formed in the early 1900s to install these specialized valves. This company became the D. G. C. Valve Co., which first appeared in directory lists in 1915. The name was modified to D. G. C. Trap & Valve Co. that same year. As described in Electrical World, 30 January 1915, "The D. G. C. Trap & Valve Company, of New York, N. Y., has been chartered with a capital stock of $25,000 by A. A. Cryer, of New York; J. H. Eastwood, of Belleville, N. J., and G. Livingston, of Jobstown, N. J. The company proposes to install plumbing, steam heating, ventilating, electric apparatus, drying and refrigerating systems."
The Ideal Gas Shut Off Co. was a division of the D. G. C. Valve Co. and, like the Cryer Trap & Valve Co., had offices in New York City through 1953. In 1954/55 the Cryer Trap & Valve Co. became a division of Encor Corp. of Belleville, N. J. Encor was a later name of the Eastwood Nealley Corp. (described below with the information about Calvin Nealley).
Albert A. Cryer (1857-1932) was the son of John W. Cryer (1826?-1898), himself a heating engineer of Newark, New Jersey. Albert Cryer's brother, Thomas Blackburn Cryer (1864-1935), also had his own heating and ventilation company in Newark, New Jersey.
This notice, regarding John W. Cryer, appeared in The Metal Worker, 4 June 1898, "John W. Cryer of the firm of T. B. Cryer & Co., heating engineers, Newark, N. J., died at his residence in that city on Saturday, May 28, aged 72 years. Mr. Cryer was connected with the heating and ventilation business and kindred lines for over 50 years, and installed some very large plants in the United States, Canada and England. He was a thorough mechanic and able business man, and was high respected by all who knew him. He was buried with Masonic honors on Tuesday, May 31. He is survived by a widow, three sons and two daughters. Two of his sons, Albert A. Cryer of New York and T. B. Cryer of Newark, are well known in the heating trade."
On the death of Albert Cryer this brief notice appeared in the New York Times, 2 Feb. 1932, "Albert A. Cryer, head of the D. G. C. Trap and Valve Company of 1 East Forty-third Street, died on Sunday at his home in the Park Lane, Park Avenue and Forty-eighth Street. He was in his seventy-fifth year. He leaves his wife, Mrs. Mathilde Helen Cryer, and a son, John A. of Cairo, N. Y."
An obituary for Thomas B. Cryer appeared in the New York Times, 29 March 1935, under the dateline "Newark, N. J., March 28," reading, "Thomas Blackburn Cryer, president of the heating engineering firm of T. B. Cryer Company, died at his home, 783 Elizabeth Avenue, yesterday. He was 71 years old and had been ill for several months. His widow, two sons, a sister and two brothers survive. Born in London, Ont., Mr. Cryer came here forty-five years ago and entered the heating business with his father. He was a member of the Code Authority for the heating, piping and air conditioning industry for Essex and Morris Counties. He was president of the Masonic Building and Loan Association of Newark. Mr. Cryer was past master, past treasurer and a trustee of Newark Masonic Lodge, No. 7."
President of D. G. C. Trap & Valve Co. in 1908 and the Paul System Co. in 1909 was John Henry Eastwood (1855-1921), born 2 April 1855 in Newark, N. J. Eastwood was a manufacturer with a wire works in Belleville, N. J. As described in Belleville, by Nicole T. Canfora in the Images of America series, "John H. Eastwood's plant on Main Street was formed in 1877 when Eastwood joined with Charles Smith and William Buchanan to manufacture Fourdrinier wire cloth made of iron, copper, and brass wire. As business increased, additions to the building and equipment were constructed until the company was twice its original size. The required machinery and looms were purchased with the start-up funds. Once the original funds were used up, a stock company was organized in 1880 to raise more capital for the Eastwood plant. John H. Eastwood served as president, and Charles Smith as secretary. In addition to Fourdrinier wire cloth and all grades of fine iron, copper, and brass wire, the plant also had a chemical division and employed 45 people by then. One of the first fire companies in town, established on June 14, 1882 was called the Eastwood Company." Views of the Eastwood works are available on Google Books.
The following notice appeared in The Paper Mill and Wood Pulp News, vol. XLIV, no. 4, 22 January 1921, "More than five hundred friends attended the funeral services over of the body of John H. Eastwood at Trinity Church, Newark, N. J., last Monday. Mr. Eastwood was president and general manager of the Eastwood Wire Manufacturing Company, Belleville, N. J. He died on January 10 at his home in Miami, Fla., after an intermittent illness by which he was stricken last summer. Mr. Eastwood, who was sixty-five years of age, was one of the best known figures in the trades allied to the paper manufacturing industry. He had years ago succeeded his father in the control of the big paper machine wire plant, and under his able leadership the business grew and prospered. ..."
Another figure at the D. G. C. Trap & Valve Co. was Leo Anthony McTighe (1879-1942). Leo A. McTighe was born 6 January 1879 in Pittsburg, Vermont, and died from a gunshot wound to the head 15 August 1942 in Dummerston, Vermont. He was one of the original incorporators of the D. G. C. Valve Co. in 1908, and an officer at Cryer Return Line System Co. and D. G. C. Trap & Valve Co. from 1906 to 1931.
President of the D. G. C. Trap & Valve Co. in the mid-1920s was Calvin H. Nealley (1870-1958), born Monroe, Maine, 18 January 1870. Nealley was a colleague of John H. Eastwood, and he assumed control of the Eastwood businesses after Eastwood's death in 1921. Eventually, the Eastwood Wire Manufacturing Co., etc., were renamed Eastwood Nealley Corp. His death notice in the New York Times, 29 April 1958, pg. 29, read, "Calvin H. Nealley, chairman of the board of directors of the Eastwood-Nealley Corporation in Belleville, died today in St. Clare's Hospital here [Denville, N.J.] after a short illness. He was 88 years old and lived here. The company manufacturers paper-mill wire cloth and nonferrous wire."
This ad for the Cryer Return Line System Co. appeared in Engineering Review, vol. XVIII, no. 5, May, 1908.
This ad for the D. G. C. Trap & Valve Co. appeared in the magazine Power June 1915.
An image of a Cryer valve patented 21 Nov. 1922 is available on google patents. Another A. A. Cryer patent is this one for a Plug Cock dated 12 Aug. 1924.
A patent assigned to the Eastwood Nealley Corp. of Belleville, NJ, is this Method For Making Wire Cloth Seams from 1938.
Copyright (c) 2015 Walter Grutchfield