My name is Angela Miller and I work in Kohler Co.’s Corporate Archives. I know, many of you are scratching your heads right now asking yourself, “What exactly is an archives?” I see the puzzled look I get from people when they learn that I’m an archivist. So for those of you that don’t know – here’s the dictionary definition:
Archive n. : a place in which records or historical documents are preserved.
So my job as an archivist is to collect key documents that are of historical importance and enduring value to the company.
Here in archives we collect and preserve a wide range of material, including; advertisements, catalogs, price lists, photographs, consumer literature, employee publications. We even have an artifact storage area where we collect tubs, toilets, faucets, etc.
Over the course of my 4 ½ years working in archives, I have learned many interesting facts about the company’s history. For example, did you know Kohler was the first plumbing manufacturer to match colors in both vitreous china and cast iron? Or that at one time Kohler manufactured an electric sink, one of the world’s first motor-powered dishwashers? And believe it or not, Kohler Co. plumbing fixtures were once displayed in an exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. I’m excited to be able to share these stories with you.