National Seal Works, Inc.
The year 1891 marked a fascinating era in history, characterized by the tail end of the Victorian era and the cusp of the Industrial Revolution’s peak. Life in 1891 was markedly different from the modern world we know today. For more than a century, 134 years actually, National Seal Works, Inc. has been an unwavering pillar, catering to the diverse needs of businesses in Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia. The late 19th century saw the rise of entrepreneurship as an essential driver of economic growth. Opportunities abounded in various sectors, particularly as industrialization spurred the creation of new businesses and the expansion of existing ones.
The company’s story began in 1891 when Harry Reinhard made a pivotal $400 investment to acquire it. During that era, businesses primarily relied on rudimentary promotional methods like printed media or lower-quality bespoke products such as badges and ribbons. Recognizing the ever evolving needs of businesses in general during the industrial revolution, they made sure to brace for changes. National Seal Works underwent a transformative journey, employing innovative techniques to craft products that empowered American companies in an increasingly competitive global market.
Creative Advertisements from throughout time advertising in Richmond Times Dispatch.
Specializing initially in custom Rubber Stamps and Notary Stamps, National Seal Works, under the leadership of Harry’s son Meyer, expanded its offerings to include a broader spectrum of office supplies, envelopes, custom stamps, embossing seals, and specialty printing. Despite the primitive nature of these products, with most costing just a few cents, the company thrived under the stewardship of five generations of Reinhards.
The work environment varied depending on the industry, with manual labor prevalent in many sectors. The concept of a 40-hour workweek was yet to be established, and labor conditions were often challenging. However, the company’s storied history is not devoid of challenges.
Hard Times, Come and Go
A tragic event unfolded in 1955 when the building succumbed to fire, resulting in a total loss and demolition of the building. Undeterred by this setback, Robert Reinhard, Harry’s grandson and a World War II Purple Heart recipient, displayed resilience and determination, eventually rebuilding the business and resuming operations in 1969 at 5606 Greendale Road in Lakeside, Virginia.
National Marking, Inc.
As Richard Reinhard, “Rick” the fourth generation, assumed leadership, he spearheaded a period of rapid expansion, creating new divisions like National Marking Inc. and Industrial Decals Now, focusing on specialty printing, digital graphics, labels, and decals. His interest in Pad Printing led to the establishment of Pad Printing Pros and Distinked Impressions, the latter originally an art stamp division specializing in innovative product packaging solutions.
Laser Engraving Pros
The 21st century brought forth an unprecedented digital revolution, transforming the way we communicate, work, and navigate daily life. Computers, once cumbersome machines limited to specialized tasks, evolved into sleek and powerful devices that became household essentials, redefining the very fabric of our existence. Social interactions, business transactions, and the distribution of information underwent a radical transformation, with the internet becoming an integral part of everyday life. This paradigm shift marked a departure from older technologies which once filled the homes and offices of the masses. National Seal Works did as they had done a hundred years before, and tuck and rolled into safety finding it easier to accept the new technologies were here to stay.
Continuing the legacy, Aaron Reinhard, the fifth generation says “At times, my Grandfather Robert Reinhard would say that his Grandfather (Harry) overpaid for it.” Given the challenges Robert faced during his tenure as owner. Aaron has embraced his own hearts innovation with the creation of Laser Engraving Pros, along with many other active departments and websites. Old and new continue to work side by side, as the stamp department, the oldest department, still lives and breathes.
With audacious tenacity, he navigates his own labyrinth of challenges, undeterred by the specter of failure that haunts many businessmen. Aaron leads by example, daring to tread where others falter, fueled by an unrelenting passion for progress. His unique perspective on life plus a major dose of ingenuity propels both himself and the business to greater heights with every passing technology. Laser Engraving Pros, and its many divisions has swiftly become a leader in custom laser engraving throughout the country. With his loyal dogs always in tow, Aaron, like his Grandfather’s before him, continues to make and smash goals, contributing to the success of the businesses and enhancing he and his families quality of life at home.
With a rich heritage, a progressive business approach, and a whole lot of hard work, National Seal Works, Inc. stands tall to this day as a beacon of success for over 130 years.