McAuley Manufacturing was founded in 1946 at its current site in Bremen, Ohio USA by three partners: Otto Mahler, Bill Graetz and Jim McAuley. They started with an idea to develop and market toys such as a sandbox, play table, and some children’s cycles. With the toy business being less than successful, the company looked at other areas to focus their energies.
In the late 1940s McAuley Manufacturing began to manufacture grain conveyors which they had developed for the Belt Corporation of Orient, Ohio. During this time, Vernon Belt, the owner of Belt Corporation made mention to the company that there were two brothers in Michigan who were looking for a better way to feed their chickens. Looking at this request as an avenue for growth, McAuley Manufacturing developed a chain for the automated feeding of chickens. The two brothers that had requested the chain were Jack and Dick DeWitt of Zeeland, Michigan. The DeWitt brothers were the founders of Big Dutchman Incorporated, one of the largest livestock machinery suppliers in the world.
Since the development of the poultry feeder chain in 1950, it has remained the main focus of our business at McAuley Manufacturing. We continued to produce the grain conveyors for Belt Corporation until the mid 1980s and for a short period in the mid 1950s we produced pumping equipment for the oil industry.
Under the current leadership of our President, Eric Mahler, McAuley Manufacturing has grown into a strong international company. Well over half of our annual volume is exported to countries such as Germany, England, Japan, Malaysia, Australia, Brazil and China. From the start of chain production in 1950 to the end of 2017, McAuley Mfg. had sold 415 million feet of chain, making us the largest manufacturer of poultry chain in the world.