CliftonW. Shermanwas already an
experienced foundry man when he arrived
in Hamilton in 1912. Born in the Lake
Champlain area of New York State
where his father operated a foundry,
Clifton had worked in steel in Chicago,
Pittsburgh and Buffalo. He was attracted
to Canada by the railway boom and its
demand for steel.
Clifton, or C.W. as he was called, was
soon joined in Hamilton by his brother
Frank A. Sherman. In these early days
the Shermans showed signs of their
progressive business practices as both
brothers, called “the top hats” by
employees, were often seen on the shop
floor working.
From the beginning, the Shermans
encouraged good communications
between management and employees.
It was the beginning of the “Dofasco
family.” Over the years, the brothers
gained attention as hard workers,
innovators, and men who would not allow
setbacks to deter them.
Beginning a tradition that has continued
since, Frank A. Sherman encouraged
employees to join after work sports
programs and enter plant teams in city
baseball and hockey leagues.
Clifton Sherman served as president
from the company’s founding in 1912
until 1945 when he became chairman
of the board, handing the presidency to
his younger brother Frank A. Sherman,
who served as president until 1953 and
chairman from 1955 to 1967.
C.W. and F.A. were known to be
generous. At a time when there was
no medical insurance the Shermans
hired a plant doctor who treated not
only employees but also their families.
Long before the profit sharing plan
was introduced retiring employees were
often given pensions or supplemental
pensions according to need.
F.A.’s son Frank H. joined the company
at the outset of WWII and oversaw
the company’s conversion to the
manufacture of armour plate. He quickly
rose through the ranks during a period
of great post-war expansion and became
president in 1959. Like his father and
uncle, F.H. shared the view that fair
treatment of employees was the key
to success.
Company annals and community lore are
filled with anecdotes of acts of private
charity and generosity of the Sherman
family, as well as their unique commitment
to art and culture. The Sherman era at the
company ended in 1994, with the death
of Frank H. Sherman.
On the company’s 25th anniversary in 1937, several
employees including F.A. Sherman, A.G. Wright,
F.A. Loosely and Dan Hassel, presented this silver
cigar box to president C.W. Sherman.
A family of steel