The Short History of Vessell Trim Co. The First Fifty Years

In 1949 Owen formed a partnership with used car dealers, Eldon and Ed Comstock and moved into another startup location. The new business, Comstock and Vessell Trim Shop, began with three partners but was reduced to Owen and Eldon when Ed later sold his share to Eldon.




Their first building near the corner of Riverside and US. 41 was similar to the Riverside Trim building in that it also had no floors, electricity, heat, or running water. To start the business, Owen, Eldon, and Eldon's brother Ed went to Cincinnati Ohio in a convertible and bought $600 worth material for making seat covers. In the first few years, they were able to run electricity into the building, hire their first employee and buy a small coal stove. At first, they had to burn used tires until the business could afford coal.




In the years preceding 1960, the business experienced major changed. In the later part of 1950, the business had enough capital to pour a concrete floor and install an indoor toilet. The combination of hard work and a good location helped the company grow. By 1961, the trim shop was solidly profitable, but, on Christmas Eve of 1961 the building was destroyed by fire. After this setback, Owen and Eldon managed to move the business a block away to their present placation at Riverside and Grand early in 1962.


In the 60s, the business saw even more changes. With the business relying more on custom and boat work and less on seat covers, the profit picture continued to improve. During the later part of the decade, Eldon decided to retire and sold his interest to Owen and Marilynn. For the first time, the business became known as Vessell Trim Co.




During the late 70s, the Vessell brothers graduated from their various schools and sought their careers. The oldest son, Gary, became an airline pilot for Northwestern, the middle son, David, became a chemist/teacher, and the youngest son, Jon, became a field engineer for NCR. In May of 1990, Jon joined Vessell Trim as the new owner/operator. Since joining the business, Jon has organized the inventory, expanded the building, and remodeled the office and waiting areas. Hopefully, Jon and his wife Wanda will guide Vessell Trim for many years to come.