The Hoover story begins in 1907. Murray Spangler, an inventor and janitor, was cleaning rugs in a Canton, Ohio, department store. He had an asthma problem which flared up when he swept.
He gathered a tin soap box, a fan, a satin pillowcase and a broom handle, and assembled an odd-looking contraption that managed to suck up the dust. He quickly realized that this “suction sweeper,” as he called it, had enormous sales potential, and looked for financial backing.
W.H. “Boss” Hoover, owner of a leather goods manufacturing shop, bought the patent for the ‘suction sweeper’ from Spangler in 1908, retaining him as a partner, and soon had six employees assembling six units a day in a corner of the leather goods shop.
“Boss” Hoover placed a small ad in the Saturday Evening Post offering 10 days’ free use of a Hoover suction sweeper to anyone who wrote and requested it. Instead of sending the cleaner directly to the potential customer, he chose a reputable store in each city that customers could purchase from. He allowed store managers to keep any commission from a resulting sale, and then offered the store the opportunity to become a Hoover vacuum dealer. This laid the groundwork for a national dealer network which, to this day, continues to be an important channel of distribution for Hoover products.
Meanwhile, engineers were designing new and improved methods of cleaning carpet. One of their most noteworthy innovations was the beater bar, introduced in 1926, which was the basis for one of the most memorable advertising slogans in history: “It beats, as it sweeps, as it cleans.” Aided by strong suction, the metal bar gently tapped the carpet to loosen deeply embedded dirt, as a bristle brush rapidly swept dirt up and out of the carpet.
Countless other “firsts” have been developed by Hoover engineers over the years to give consumers the most innovative and convenient features available. These include the disposable paper bag, the vacuum cleaner headlight, the self-propelled feature and the side-mounted hose feature.
Today, Hoover is part of TTI Floor Care North America, headquartered in Glenwillow, OH. As a leader in the floor-care industry, Hoover manufactures quality, high-performance vacuum cleaners for home and commercial settings. Since 1908, consumers and businesses have trusted Hoover to provide reliable, innovative cleaning solutions.