One of the Philadelphia Region’s Oldest Companies Is in Delaware County

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One of the top 25 oldest businesses in the Philadelphia region happens to be in Delaware County, according to a list compiled by Philadelphia Business Journal.

The 218-year-old Alan McIlvain Co., which provides wholesale hardwood lumber and custom mouldings, was 13th.

The Journal’s list excludes higher education institutions, independent private schools, public schools, alumni, civic and social organizations and associations.

The company was established in 1798 and has offices at 501 Market Street in Marcus Hook.

It was founded by Hugh McIlvain, a Scotch-Irish Quaker, according to the Alan McIlvain Co. website.

In the late 1700’s, rivers and canals transported lumber from sawmills to the company’s lumberyard. Early customers were carpenters, furniture makers and industrials.

By 1834, lumber could be transported via railroad and canal between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.

In 1872, under a third generation of McIlvains, the lumber company provided the materials for the University of Pennsylvania’s new campus in West Philadelphia.

Despite a 1906 fire, the company survived and was able to deliver lumber to the shipyards in World War I and II.

Today, the Alan McIlvain Co. is run by the family’s seventh generation and has 90 employees.

This 3-minute promotional video for ICW Insurance Company features Alan McIlvain Co.

See the list at the Philadelphia Business Journal.

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