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SINCE 1964
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Ward Corporation's History

The Birth of a Corporation


      May 18th, 1964 -- Marion and Vern Ward opened the doors of WARD Pattern & Engineering Company as a small pattern shop with three employees and 1,500 sq. ft. The first year’s sales reached $90,000 and Vern Ward was recognized as the outstanding Small Businessman of the Year for the State of Indiana that same year.


      1969 -- An aluminum foundry was started by Marion’s brother, Gail Cole, to produce prototype and short-run production sand castings for various industries including the AEROSPACE and AUTOMOTIVE markets.


      1978 -- Ward Aluminum Casting, Inc. was formed by assuming assets and liabilities of Cole Precision Castings. Ward has grown to 40 employees and 15,000 sq. ft.



1980 thru 1999 Growth and Expansion 



     1980 -- WARD continued to expand with the purchase of the previously rented three-story, 120,000 sq. ft. building at 642 Growth Ave. to house both WARD PATTERN and ENGINEERING and WARD ALUMINUM CASTING. This became Building #1.


       1984 – 1985 – Building additions added to original manufacturing site

  •  Constructed 2,000 sq. ft. shipping area including loading dock facility.

  •  Additional 12,000 sq. ft. of floor space added to Ward Aluminum Casting.

  •  Purchased 130,000 sq. ft. four-story Warehouse at 641 Growth Avenue, Fort Wayne, IN. This facility was continued to be run as a public warehouse for many years, under the name Tracon Warehouse Division. This became Building #2

  • Constructed foundry laboratory, and installed necessary equipment.

  • Permanent molding is added to the existing sand casting operations.

  • Casting machining operations are added as part of WP&E. WARD had previously been a supplier only of raw castings.


    1986 – 1989 – Exterior and interior updating on all buildings

  • $2.1 million expansion in machining facilities and heat treat facilities started.

  • WARD PRODUCTION MACHINE was made a separate division and moved out of the pattern shop to it’s own area of 8,900 sq. ft., in a newly remodeled section of Building #2.

  • WARD HEAT TREAT, a 25,000 sq.. ft. facility located four miles north of the main plant, is built and became operational. This became Building #3. Also during this time period, an additional 19,000 sq.. ft. was added to the foundry facility for expansion of the permanent mold operations.


      1990 – 1998 – More exterior and interior updating on all buildings

  • Built new CAD Room for WP&E.

  • Constructed an area for employee training.

  • Several new production CNCs purchased and installed in WPM during this period.



                       1999 thru 2014 More Growth and Expansion 



1999 – 2001 – Building added to original manufacturing site

  • Purchased Building at 730 Growth Ave., 100,000 sq. ft. in manufacturing space adjacent to the main manufacturing facilities. This became Building #4.

  • Received ISO 9002/QS-9000 Certification.


     2001 – 2008  -  Increase in business and addition of production equipment

  • Customer base expanded, and sales growth increases rapidly.

  • Tracon Warehouse operations are discontinued. Building #2 remodeled in to a larger machining operation, and several large CNCs, both vertical and horizontal, are purchased and installed.

  • Expanding finished goods holding area moved to Building #2.

  • Incoming material receiving and storage moved to Building #4.

  • WP&E operations moved to Building #4.

  • Large part of clean and finish operations are split up, and moved to Building #2 and Building #4.

  • Shell core making operations expanded in to area vacated by WP&E.

  • Permanent mold operations expanded with purchase and installation of multiple molding machines and gas-fired and electric melting furnaces.


    2009 – 2014  - Surviving and thriving

  • Survived the Great Recession of 2008-2009, and emerged as a much leaner and meaner operation.

  • Added several new large horizontal CNCs to machining operations.

  • Landed significant new business, in effect doubling sales from 2008 to 2014.


  2015 - Beyond : Further Growth


  • Began construction on 16,000 sq. ft. addition to WAC (Building #1), as a result of new large production contract.

  • Purchased production machines, for both WAC and WPM, as well as melting furnaces for new production area.


=     WARD CORPORATION:  642 Growth Ave, Fort Wayne, IN 46808  (260) 426-8700