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HON is headquartered in Muscatine, IA

Muscatine, Iowa, home of HON headquarters – what’s it all about?

Honestly, much more than what meets the eye. While Muscatine is a town of only 22,000 people, it has a rich history and an intriguing economic background which it still maintains today. Muscatine is home to headquarters and manufacturing facilities of companies, such as HNI Corporation, HON, Allsteel, Heinz, Monsanto, Bridgestone, and Musco Lighting. These industry titans contribute to employment opportunities and economic growth today; however, it was something quite different that put Muscatine on the map many years ago…

“The Pearl of the Mississippi” was the nickname given to Muscatine in the late 1800’s when the McKee Button Factory, locally operated out of Muscatine (and producer of our Abound® Plains Tiles!), was a national leader in the production and supply of decorative pearl buttons. These buttons were harvested out of the Mississippi River. As success ensued in the early 1900’s, Muscatine was dubbed the “Pearl Button Capital of the World”. Interestingly, one of the old button manufacturing buildings has been repurposed and renovated as part of HON Headquarters.

In addition to the well-known companies, some notable figures also have roots deep in Muscatine, including Max Allen Collins, author of graphic novel Road to Perdition. You may have heard of a gentleman by the name of Mark Twain, who spent a stint of his writing career in Muscatine and had this to say about the scenery:

“And I remember Muscatine—still more pleasantly—for its summer sunsets. I have never seen any, on either side of the ocean that equaled them.”

What are some things you love about your company’s hometown?

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Beckey Bridge Muscatine, Iowa

Since its founding in 1944, HON has been headquartered in Muscatine, IA, a small city located along the Mississippi River. If you’ve had the chance to visit us in Muscatine, you may have had the opportunity to view a beautiful sunset (or sunrise, for the morning people out there!) over the river. In fact, Mark Twain, who briefly lived and worked in Muscatine, described the sunsets as follows: “I have never seen any, on either side of the ocean that equaled them. They used the broad smooth river as a canvas, and painted on it every imaginable dream of color, from the mottled daintiness and delicacies of the opal…to blinding purple and crimson conflagrations which were enchanting to the eye, but sharply tried at the same time.” Mark Twain was just one notable visitor to Muscatine, and the sunsets are just one of many things for which Muscatine is known.

Here are some other interesting facts you might not know about Muscatine, Iowa:

  1. There are no other cities in the United States named Muscatine.
  2. Muscatine is known as the “Pearl of the Mississippi” in reference to pearl button manufacturing that was once the central economic focus of the city.
  3. A wide variety of crops are grown in Muscatine, but arguably the most notable is the Muscatine Melon.
  4. HJ Heinz Company has a location in Muscatine that is the largest outside of their headquarters in Pittsburgh—check your Heinz products, you may see Muscatine as the producing location!
  5. Max Allan Collins is from Muscatine. You may know him as the author of Road to Perdition.
  6. Muscatine’s two national historic districts, Downtown and West Hill, are  listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
  7. Maxwell Stanley, co-founder of HON, was also a founder of Stanley Consultants, the Stanley Foundation, and was a delegate to the United Nations.

Muscatine may not be all that big, but The HON Company is proud to be headquartered in a city that’s home to a variety of industries, historical significance, and notable residents. If you haven’t had the chance to visit us at HON Headquarters, please do! If you have been here already, what was your favorite part about Muscatine?

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