Leviton was founded by Evser and Isidor Leviton in 1906. After migrating from Russia to the United States, the two opened up a small tinsmithing business producing mantle tips used for gas lighting. Soon with the introduction of Edison’s light bulb, the small family business shifted production to manufacture a single electrical product -- the pull-chain lamp holder. From that one electrical device, Leviton has been churning out groundbreaking products that improve electrical safety, enhance communication, provide efficiency and cost savings and add convenience and value to our world.
During our earliest years in business, the population of New York City began to increase dramatically. Homes, apartment buildings, skyscrapers, offices and factories were quickly being built and Leviton supplied the switches, outlets, light sockets and other electrical parts for them. By the end of the 1920’s, we offered more than 550 different electrical devices in our product catalog and outgrew our facilities in Manhattan’s Bowery, relocating to larger quarters in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. We also began acquiring other businesses to add a pool of skilled employees to our workforce and increase our production capacity.
In 1937 we acquired American Insulated Wire Company, adding wire, cable and cord products to our offering. Two prestigious New York area landmarks showcased our products. One was the 102-story Empire State Building and the second, the World’s Fair site in Flushing Meadows Park. During the 1940’s Leviton helped manufacture parts for machinery used to win World War II.
In 1950 we purchased the Deal Electric Company and three years later, Hale Brothers, which we renamed Leviton Canada. We expanded our OEM offering to include fluorescent lighting products and with the introduction of reliable solid-state circuitry in the 60's, incorporated this technology into our GFCI and dimmer products.
In the 70's and 80's our product offering expanded significantly. Our Decora® designer devices had become a household name for rocker style switches and outlets. Our expansive growth necessitated our relocation once again to larger facilities in Little Neck, New York. With the advent of computer technology in the 80's, we introduced our line of surge protective devices as well as our telephony voice and data line to bring high-speed communications to commercial data centers. We also launched our home automation business with the introduction of our Decora Home Controls® product offering.
In the 90's, we forged inroads into the commercial lighting systems market. Our acquisition of Macro Electronics Corporation and NSI Corporation fueled the expansion of our business into the architectural and theatrical lighting systems markets. Recognizing that homes need efficient connectivity and communications technology, we introduced our residential networking products in 2000. These products are known today as Leviton Connected Home products.
Our 2006 purchase of Fiber Connect added to our strength in the commercial data center space and our 2007 purchase of ControlThink to our capabilities in PC- CE- and mobile phone-based solutions for intelligent home control. Our partnership with Cheetah USA forged in 2009 gives residential contractors a way to reduce their installation costs. In 2009 we also relocated our World Headquarters to Melville, NY. This LEED Silver state-of-the-art office complex serves as a showcase for the Company's installed products and as a model high-performance building.
With our heritage of innovation, excellence and setting the pace of progress in our industry, we have a lot to be proud of: 90% of homes across North America use one or more devices we make. Builders, electrical contractors, homeowners, specifiers, architects and engineers rank our products # 1 in brand preference. And, our design patents consistently rate as having significant technological value and impact on other companies in our industry. Continuing in this tradition, we started this decade by introducing our line of Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment, with many new innovations on the horizon.