Steelcase Turns 100

Victor, a fireproof, steel wastebasket was introduced in 1914, and quickly became a top seller for Metal Office Furniture Co. Due to the low manufacturing costs achieved by the company's process of bending steel at right angles, Victor is an affordable item for the office and hotel industries.

In 1915, Metal Office Furniture Co. debuted its first desk, the 601 (shown). Designed for the Customs House Tower, Boston's first skyscraper, the steel desk met the U.S. government's new specs for office furniture made of metal instead of wood.

The Metal Office Furniture Co.'s fireproof 621 steel desk, which was released in 1924, could support a maximum of 6,000 pounds. It was the first desk the company offered in olive-green rather than a wood-grained finish.

Metal Office Furniture Co. patented suspension file cabinets in 1934 and introduced double-wall drawers for added durability.

In 1937, Metal Office Furniture Co. (MOFC) manufactured the office furniture for Frank Lloyd Wright's S.C. Johnson Wax Building in Racine, Wis. As a result of the two-year design and production partnership with Wright, MOFC created task-oriented furniture, the foundation of the modern workstation.

In 1946, Metal Office Furniture Co. released the Multiple 15 desk, which was designed on 15-inch dimensions to improve space planning in open office environments. By 1960, the 15-inch system would be a universal standard in the industry.

In 1953, Metal Office Furniture Co. (MOFC) expanded its color palette with Sunshine Styling, colors inspired by a company co-founder's trip to Arizona. MOFC changed its name to Steelcase in 1954.

The 860 Series Broadsides Lateral Files was released in 1966.

Steelcase's Series 9000 was introduced in 1973, and would go on to became the world’s leading systems furniture line.

Steelcase launched Pathways in 1998 as a portfolio of products that integrate furniture, worktools, technology and interior architecture.

Steelcase's LiveBack seating technology for Leap, a high-performance task chair introduced in 1999, supported the user's upper and lower back separately.

Steelcase launched the Think task chair in 2004. The 99-percent recyclable chair, which was developed and assembled by Steelcase employees on three different continents, became Steelcase's first global product. In 2005, the Think chair was the first Steelcase chair to be Cradle to Cradle certified.

Steelcase launched a set of collaborative solutions in 2009, including Media:Scape (shown), C:Scape, i2i, and Cobi. The products were designed to help people connect with each other and technology in a team-focused environment.

The Node chair, a collaborative effort between Ideo and Steelcase, was introduce in 2010 as the first product from Steelcase Education Solutions. The chair enabled mobility and reconfiguration for collaborative or individual study.

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