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Manufacturers Index - Sunlight Electrical Manufacturing Co.

Sunlight Electrical Manufacturing Co.
Warren, OH, U.S.A.
Manufacturer Class: Wood Working Machinery

Last Modified: Sep 3 2018 1:01PM by Jeff_Joslin
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Sunlight Electrical Manufacturing Co., of Warren, Ohio, was founded in June 1917. The apparently specialized in electric lamps and in fractional horsepower motors, especially for washing machines. By 1927 Frederick S. Kingston was their motor designer, and he was granted a series of patents. In 1933 Sunlight was acquired, for $665,000, by Delco Products Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of General Motors. Delco Products was made a division of GM and Sunlight's motor manufacturing was relocated from Warren to Dayton.

Meanwhile, Brooks L. Conley had graduated from the University of Wisconsin in engineering in 1918. After a stint in the Navy he worked for a time at Emerson Electric in St. Louis, the Hoover Co., and Holtzer & Cabot Electric Co. In 1930 he moved from Holtzer-Cabot to Sunlight, where he was chief engineer, working with Kingston on motor designs. It appears that Conley left Sunlight shortly after they were acquired by GM; Kingston remained with GM for a time. By 1934 Kingston had also left, and in that year joined Conley in designing motors as the Kingston-Conley Electric Co. of Jersey City, NJ. Kingston-Conley was acquired by Hoover in 1948.

In 1932 General Motors bought Packard Electric Co., of Warren Ohio, which had been founded in 1890, and spun off the Packard Motor Car Co. in 1902. Packard became the Packard Electric Division of General Motors Corp. In 1943, Sunlight's small motor production was consolidated with Packard.

A patent match confirms that Sunlight built some electric motors and Companion bench grinders in the 1930s. It is believed that both Sunlight and Packard built motors and grinders for Sears under source code 115.


Frederick S. Kingston
1928-1934 patents assigned to Sunlight:

  • 1,665,742 1928 04 10
  • 1,853,864 1932 04 12
  • 1,853,865 1932 04 12
  • 1,864,654 1932 06 28
  • 1,872,595 1932 08 16
  • 1,910,610 1933 05 23
  • 1,935,800 1933 11 21
  • 1,948,037 1934 02 20
  • 1,953,179 1934 04 03

  • 1933, a patent was assigned to the Oakwood Electrical Manufacturing Co. of Ohio (improvement to patent 1,665,742)
  • 1,916,270 1933 07 04

  • 1934-1935, his patents were being assigned to GM.
  • 1,971,417 1934 08 28
  • 1,987,194 1935 01 08

  • 1939 patent assigned jointly by Books L. Conley
  • 2,184,411 1939 12 26
  • 2,184,412 1939 12 26

  • 1952 patent was assigned to Hoover.
  • 2,581,958 1952 01 08
  • Brooks L. Conley
    1929 patent assigned to Emerson Electric

  • 1,717,145 1929 06 11

  • 1930 patent assigned to Hoover Co.
  • 1,750,745 1930 03 18

  • 1939 patent, assigned 50% to Frederick S. Kingston
  • 2,184,411 1939 12 26
  • 2,184,412 1939 12 26

  • 1934 patent (with Kingston) assigned to Conley and GM
  • 1,971,417 1934 08 28
  • From 1948 "Electrical World" (Google Books, "snippet view" only, unfortunately): "...Brooks L. Conley will continue handling engineering and other responsibilities of the business. Mr Kingston and Mr Conley are both former Hoover executives. The Kingston-Conley Division will continue the operation of its plants at North Plainfield, N.J., and C______, Ohio..."

    From the December 1918 "The Wisconsin Engineer", alumni mag from U of Wisconsin: "BROOKS L. CONLEY, e '18, [and some other guys] are in training for the Navy at Stevens Institute."

    From the 1922 "The Wisconsin Engineer": "Brooks L. Conley, e '18, M. S. '20, is electrical engineer with the Hoover Suction Sweeper Company in charge of otor design. His address is 405 Second St., N. W. Canton, Ohio."

    From the March 1930 "The Wisconsin Engineer":"Conley, B., e'18, has resigned as electrical engineer for the Holtzer-Cabot Electric Company of Boston and is now chief engineer with the Sunlight Electrical Manufacturing Company at Warren, Ohio. Address: The Buckeye Club, Warren, Ohio."

    From www.hudsonscustommachining.com/FunFanFacts.doc:

  • Says that Sunlight Electrical was organized in June 1917
  • "The United States Circuit Court, Northern District of Ohio, Eastern Division, on Oct 12, 1911, required that several lamp manufacturing plants, which were owned by the General Electric Company, henceforth inform the public of the relationship that existed between them and GE." Packard Lamp Division and Peerless Lamp Division are both listed from the beginning (1914). By 1919 Peerless was the "Peerless-Brilliant Lamp Division" and Sunlight Electrical Manufacturing Co. was added to the list, which skips from 1916 to 1919. In 1921 Packard, Peerless-Brilliant, and Sunlight are all listed. In 1923 Sunlight is gone. By 1927 the other two are gone also.
  • Annual Report of the Ohio Secretary of State

  • 1933: lists Sunlight Electrical Manufacturing Co. of Warren
  • "The flow of business funds and consumer purchasing power", by Ruth Prince Mack, 1941

  • p. 80: "...depreciation between 1932 and 1938, inclusive. During that period, the following major additions have been noted: 1933—purchase [by the Delco Productions Division of General Motors] of the Sunlight Electrical Manufacturing Company at Warren, Ohio, and its use for the manufacture of small electrical motors; ..."
  • "Mergers and the Clayton act", by David Dale Martin, 1959

  • p. 166: "... An example of such a situation is the acquisition of the Sunlight Electrical Manufacturing Company by Delco Products Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Motors. Delco had been selling washing-machine motors to three firms, none of..."
  • "Problems of American small business, Volume 11" by United States Congress, 1942:

  • "Well, he states that this entire procurement was subcontracted by Bendix to Sunlight Electrical Manufacturing Co., a division of General Motors..."
  • "Hearings By United States. Congress. Senate"

  • Sunlight Electrical Co. $665,000. (In table; Packard Electric Co. is just over $1M)
  • "Consideration paid: $665,000. What was bought: The assets and liabilities of a plant in Warren, Ohio... manufacturing small fractional horsepower motors almost entirely for use... washing machines."
  • "... In January 1940 the Sunlight Electrical operations were separated from Delco..."
  • "Administered Prices: Appendix By United States. Congress. Senate", 1963

  • "... The [Packard] plant now produces wires for aircraft and electrical appliances, as well as automobile harness, and manufactures its own cable, lacquer, plastic and rubber moldings, magnet wire, and does its own diecasting and plating. In 1943 the small motor production of the Sunlight Electrical operations (see Sunlight) were consolidated with Packard."
  • "Electrical appliance and utilization equipment list", by Underwriters' Laboratories

  • SUNLIGHT ELECTRICAL DIV. of General Motors Corp., Warren, Ohio. Motor protective devices — Inherent overheating type. For use when mounted on the indicated ..."
  • "Changing Us Auto Industry" by Professor James M. Rubenstein, 1992

  • "... When production of ignitions was moved to Anderson, the Dayton plant made Lovejoy shock absorbers instead and was renamed the Delco Products Division. Delco Products soon acquired a second product, when GM bought the Sunlight Electrical Company in 1933 and relocated production of its small motors from Warren, Ohio."