Standing the Test of Time: TIPCO Technologies Celebrates 135 Years in Business

In 1888, George. P. Thomas, Jr. purchased a rubber footwear and clothing company known as the Goodyear Rubber House, located in Downtown Baltimore at Baltimore and Charles Streets. Although Goodyear Rubber House was destroyed by the “Great” Baltimore Fire of 1904, it reopened two years later.  In 1929, the Company was purchased by The United States Rubber Company, and George P. Thomas III, son of Thomas, Jr. moved from rubber boots and clothing to mechanical rubber goods more akin to current TIPCO product lines.

Pictured: A George P. Thomas Jr. Goodyear Rubber Hose invoice from 1905 and the envelope it was mailed in. 

In 1960, the business was purchased by Frank J. Clary and R. Wallace Cadle, and incorporated as “George P. Thomas Rubber Co., Inc.”. Mr. Clary retired in 1965 and Mr. Cadle purchased the company in its entirety.

Pictured: the cover of a folder from the company’s time located on Blair Hill Lane in Baltimore, Maryland, and the business card within. Service is still TIPCO’s most important product.

On January 3, 1983, Bob and Jane Lyons purchased the company from Mr. Cadle and Mr. Cadle remained on as a full-time employee until 1986.

Pictured: Bob and Jane Lyons

In December 1987, the company moved to its current location in Owings Mills, Maryland, changing its name to “Thomas Industrial Products. Co., Inc.”

Pictured: Bob Lyons, Rob Lyons, and Industry peers standing next to the sign at the Owings Mills location shortly after relocating.

In 1991, TIPCO opened its first branch location in Chantilly, Virginia, and since then has opened Hose Center locations throughout the Mid-Atlantic region, including Glen Burnie, MD, Frederick, MD, Pocomoke City, MD, Wilmington, DE, Vineland, NJ, Manassas, VA, Fredericksburg, VA, Lynchburg, VA, Chester, VA, and Hanover, PA. TIPCO has also established an OEM Center in Glen Burnie, MD, a Gasket Division in Glen Burnie, MD, and a Metal Hose Division in Lynchburg, VA. 

In 1999, the company name was changed to “Tipco Technologies, Inc.” or just “TIPCO” for short, to recognize the technology of our products and the commitment to using technology in the way we serve our customers.

In 2001 Rob and Terri Lyons, the current owners, purchased the business from Bob and Jane Lyons.  From 2001-2023, Rob and Terri have led TIPCO to become one of the most recognized and trusted distributors of hose and related products.

Pictured: Rob and Terri Lyons in TIPCO’s headquarters in Owings Mills, Maryland.

Throughout TIPCO’s 135-year history, the common thread has been a “customer-first always” approach that is engrained in the company’s culture and DNA. For 135 Years, this approach has allowed TIPCO to grow from a rubber footwear and clothing store to a recognized leader in fluid conveyance solutions throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. A dedication to service and quality has remained constant throughout TIPCO’s rich history as a family-owned independent distributor. TIPCO thanks our customers, employees, and world-class supplier partners for being a part of our history and future. 

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