The Kelly-Springfield Tire Company legacy lives on at Allegany Museum, Pershing Street, Cumberland MD, where an extensive display of artifacts and memorabilia are exhibited across several rooms.
Edwin Kelly founded the Kelly Springfield Tire Company in 1894. Mr. Kelly manufactured solid rubber carriage wheels that made for a smooth and quiet ride on hard surfaces. Within four years, Mr. Kelly’s company was producing thousands of carriage tires that were sold throughout the world.
The horse drawn carriage market was shrinking as quickly as the automobile market was expanding, and the company soon had to produce a new kind of tire, one that could be filled with pressurized air.
The plant was temporarily converted to produce munitions during World War II.
After the plant closed in 1987, an effort by local and state officials helped to build the Kelly-Springfield Corporate Headquarters on Willowbrook Road, which finally closed for good in 1998. The closing marked the end of a 77-year run for the tire maker in Cumberland.
The Museum is open Tuesday-Saturday 10 to 4, and Sundays 1 to 4. Admission is free, and donations are very gratefully accepted.