NJ: The Linoleum Production Capital of the World

Linoleum production was once big business for New Jersey and for neighboring Staten Island. Production boomed in the 19th and 20th centuries. Kearny, NJ proved to be the center of production for decades.

Production on an Epic Scale

In the December 15, 1940 issue of The Star-Ledger, author Edward J. Mowery wrote, “if there ever was an epic in manufacturing genius, you’ll find it at the 48-acre Kearny plant of Congoleum-Nairn, Inc.”

Linoleum production

Linoleum production at Congoleum-Nairn.

So how did this epic tale begin? Immigration and innovation. According to The Observer, linoleum production came to Kearny from Scotland. Beginning in 1886, the Nairn Linoleum Company purchased property that eventually “became a 63-acre complex that stretched along Passaic Avenue all the way from Belgrove Drive to Bergen Ave.”

Michael Nairn was behind it all. First, he sent a salesperson to rack up American orders of the flooring and shipping them from Scotland. Linoleum became so popular that he realized he needed to open a factory to keep up.

Later becoming Congoleum-Nairn, by 1939, 164 million square yards of linoleum were being produced in America. After a series of mergers, Kearny’s own Congoleum-Nairn was the largest producer of linoleum in the world.

“Hollywood would have a tough time setting the stage for this drama,” wrote Mowery. “The props are from all corners of the earth. They take linseed oil (from Argentine), jute (from India), cork (from Algiers), fossilized resin (from New Zealand), burlap (from Scotland), pigments (from everywhere), place them in plain American gyratory gadgets…and you get linoleum.”

This indeed is a story that only could have begun in the 19th and 20th centuries. Only after world trade became a true possibility. After all of these ingredients from all over the earth could be brought together.

Linoleum: An Economic Boom

An article from the Newark Sunday Call, March 2, 1941, continues the story:

“Fifteen hundred persons in the Kearny-Newark area owe their jobs to the fact that an Englishman, 80 years ago, made the startling discovery that he could walk on oil.”

After spilling the oil, the story goes, it solidified. Frederick Walton discovered he could walk on it, thus giving him the idea for linoleum.

The number of jobs created is staggering. Just consider that in 2008, out of 5,930,132 businesses in America, only 8,283 of those companies had more than 1,500 employees. Then consider that we are talking about 1940.

The scale of production is also amazing. Congoleum-Nairn had more than 100 buildings in Kearny, occupying more than 48 acres of land in 1941. Even the ovens, according to the Newark Sunday Call article, were “six stories high.”

After Congoleum-Nairn swelled to 68 acres, and after America entered World War II, the company shifted much of its production to military supplies. Which included, according to The Observer, “aerial torpedo parts and grenades.” The company still produced linoleum, but it was no longer its main product.

In 1943, tragedy struck when 13 people died in an explosion at the Congoleum-Nairn plant.

Linoleum Production: A Changing Industry

Throughout the following decades, Congoleum morphed, innovated, and invented a number of new products. But in 1986, the company was sold to Hillside Industries. It was exactly 100 years after Michael Nairn began purchasing property in Kearny.

In 2015 NJ.com reported that many factories had been demolished, and that “New York-based DVL, Inc. is constructing a retail development at the site, which once housed a Congoleum-Nairn manufacturing plant.”

Like so much of American history, it has been buried by new development and by demolition.

But linoleum lives on, especially with the development of products like Marmoleum. Just as Americans are turning more to organic foods, they are considering the health, environmental, and safety aspects of their flooring. Linoleum-based products are a viable option for many.

Marmoleum Click 3 Cinch Loc Tiles & Planks at GreenHomeFloors

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 5, 2017

Green Home Floors Now Offering Marmoleum Click 3 Cinch Loc Floating Linoleum Floors!

Marmoleum CinchLoc Click 3 comes in a wide variety of colors and designs.

Marmoleum Click 3 Cinch Loc comes in a wide variety of colors and designs.

Marmoleum floating floor tiles and plank systems just keep getting better.

With Forbo’s latest development of Marmoleum Click Cinch Loc, the tiles have become even easier to install, the price has dropped significantly, making it affordable for almost any budget, and Marmoleum Click 3 Cinch Loc features a higher level of water resistance and antimicrobial properties. That makes these tiles easier to clean, better for reducing your family’s exposure to allergens, and reduces the likelihood for the breeding of harmful molds.

Marmoleum is made of natural ingredients like rosin, limestone, and linseed oil, and is one of the best choices to improve the air quality of your home or business, especially for those who suffer from asthma. As always, Green Home Floors will send you free samples so you can see for yourself. The tiles come in a variety of colors and designs, allowing you to fit them to your own personal aesthetic and keep your home looking great. Because of the natural ingredients, the tiles reach room temperature quickly and can be used for underfloor heating, making for a higher level of comfort for you and your family.

Marmoleum is a great sustainable indoor air quality flooring option for your home or light commercial application. Anywhere else where you want a healthy, environmentally-friendly flooring—just be sure to give us a call at 844-356-6784 so we can discuss whether the subfloor conditions of your room meet the qualifications needed for Marmoleum installation.

Green Home Floors has also introduced a maximum cost of $59 for shipping on orders of any size. Feel free to call them at 844-356-6784.

For more information and pricing, please stop by www.greenhomefloors.com.

 

 

Marmoleum Click 3 flooring.

Basement Marmoleum Linoleum Floor? Read this first.

So it’s time to finish your basement flooring. With endless options on the market, you want the one that is safe for your family, won’t break the bank, and is environmentally-friendly. Look no further than Marmoleum Click 3 Cinch Loc. While Forbo makes glue down tile and sheet options, their click together product is so versatile and suited to many dry basement projects.

Is Marmoleum Click 3 the best flooring for your basement? Maybe, maybe not. Let’s find out.

The first and most important step is to assess your subfloor conditions. This is a job for the person responsible for the installation and who should be able to guide you. Green Home Floors is one of those suppliers who can offer some advice and help you to purchase the products. Before Marmoleum Click 3 is installed, there are a number of factors to look at, especially for basements. From dampness to whether the floor is level, pitched or lumpy and bumpy, Marmoleum Click 3 should only be installed if it is the right fit for your specific situation.

Forbo, the manufacturer of Marmoleum Click 3 Cinch Loc, suggests checking the relative humidity in the concrete slab or the moisture content percentage as a means to determine suitability for installation. Click product has a wood core and does not perform well in damp environments. Sometimes a vapor barrier can fix that.  That is all explained in their installation guide.

The benefits of Marmoleum Click 3 for basement flooring

  • Installation is a beginner level project. Anyone who can strike a line and manage a handsaw can install it, and replacements are simple.
  • The top wear layer of Marmoleum Cinch Loc is made from natural ingredients like linseed oil, limestone, and rosin. As a green and natural product it is a great to use for children’s play areas and recreation areas. The Mayo Clinic recommends hardwood or linoleum flooring, especially if your child has asthma or allergies. Marmoleum, being a natural linoleum flooring, is also referenced by the Environmental Protection Agency in a study of Emory University’s hospital flooring choices (spoiler: they chose Marmoleum).
  • The core of Marmoleum Click 3 Cinch Loc is a moisture-resistant wood core. While it still requires an inexpensive vapor barrier under it to protect from vapor in the concrete, spills are no problem.
  • The backing of Marmoleum Click 3 Cinch Loc is cork. Renewable, sustainable, and natural, it provides a wonderful cushioned feel to the floor, making it ideal for long periods of standing.
  • It comes in a wide variety of colors and designs. Free samples are available.
  • According to Forbo.com, “Thanks to its natural ingredients Marmoleum Click reaches room temperature quickly, ensuring your house is snug and warm. Our Marmoleum Click floors can even be used with underfloor heating. It is a tactile floor covering and comfortable under feet, ideal to live and play on.

Installation is easy

Watch Forbo’s video showing how simple Marmoleum Click 3 is to install:

Have your basement finished before you even know it. Since Marmoleum Cinch Loc Click 3 is easy install, you can save a lot of money by doing it yourself. This is the Marmoleum product that DOES NOT require an experienced installer.

See different color schemes with the Green Floor-Plan Designer.

Marmoleum maintenance tips

Marmoleum maintenance is easy. Each tile comes with a “Topshield2” finish, which protects your floor from scratches. In addition, the tiles can be regularly vacuumed, but sweeping and spot cleaning is what most people find works best.

Marmoleum can also be wiped down using a damp cloth, cleaned using some Forbo neutral floor cleaner, or buffed as needed. Check out Forbo’s maintenance guide to find out what the best practices are for long-term care of your new basement flooring. Also, Green Home Floors has the products and advice you need to keep your floors looking good for many years.

A useable, comfortable basement

Any type of flooring is just one part of having a basement that you love. Whether you turn the basement into a game room or a home office, Marmoleum can be a great choice. Order a free sample today or give us a call at 844-356-6784 for a consultation or technical support.

Find the lowest prices on Marmoleum at Green Home Floors.

Still have questions? Check out our Marmoleum FAQs.

Marmoleum Click 3 flooring.

Marmoleum flooring comes in a wide variety of designs.