Illinois Plant Goes From Plowshares to Pistols for Profit

The road to financial success started in H.J. Mennie’s garage in rural Illinois, where the tool and die maker built a parts-manufacturing business selling to Fortune 500 companies from Caterpillar Inc. to Cummins Inc. His strategy worked for four decades, until the last recession and global commerce’s volatility cut into the firm’s profits and workforce.

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