In 1949, Glen Miller, a linoleum installer, partnered with Charles Fair, a tool and die maker, to found what was then called Milfair Linoleum.
After returning home to Guernsey County after World War II and the Merchant Marines, Glen found work as a linoleum installer for Kaplan’s Furniture. His desire to be in business for himself was realized in 1949 when he and Charles blended their last names and their talents to form Milfair Linoleum Co. at 537 Wheeling Avenue in Cambridge. Their business grew quickly, and custom installations became their trademark. Homes all across Cambridge boasted their custom insets, feature strips and flash coved installations.
In 1951, Charles heeded the call to “Go west young man!” and moved to Washington state. Glen’s brother Flavil became his new partner and together they added paint to their product offerings, becoming Milfair Linoleum & Paint Co. Their cousin, Robert McKee, started with Milfair in 1957 after attending Ohio University, fulfilling many of the business’ operating duties. The “store on the hill” continued to flourish with the advent of wall to wall carpeting, necessitating larger facilities.
In 1957 Flavil moved on, eventually becoming a full time gospel preacher of the Church of Christ, making Glen the sole proprietor of Milfair Linoleum & Carpet Co. Glen remodeled an auto service garage at 634 Steubenville Avenue, where he began offering a wide assortment of linoleum, ceramic and plastic tile, and carpeting in his new, larger space.
Business continued to increase and so did the need for professional installers. Some of the installers from those early years included Zedrick Clark, Pat Murphy, Don Morgan, Ed Schultice, Jay Jones, Sherman Osgood, Chuck Wolfe, and Hiram “Lew” Mercer. Milfair’s reputation for quality and integrity fueled its growth and in 1968 it became incorporated. Glen served as President and sole stockholder and Robert served as Vice President.
Milfair continued to increase and diversify its product offerings to include no wax vinyl flooring, sweepers, and custom window treatments. For a period of time they even offered Hoover appliances including the very popular spin washer. They offered not only a complete selection of flooring options, including carpeting, no wax vinyl, ceramic and hardwood, but also a complete assortment of custom window treatments including draperies, blinds, woven woods and shades.
In 1980, Glen’s son Brent graduated from Harding University and joined the family business. He assumed the role of estimator and allowed Milfair to not only participate in residential new construction and remodel projects, but also in commercial flooring projects. A new flooring product was introduced in the 1990’s and Milfair featured the new laminate floors which would continue to grow in popularity.
Through the years Milfair’s reputation of integrity and quality was not only recognized by its customers, but also by its suppliers. Today Milfair Linoleum & Carpet Co. is proudly recognized by Mohawk Carpeting as a Floorscapes Dealer, by Shaw Carpeting as a Shaw Studio Dealer and by Beaulieu Carpeting as a Bliss Retail Partner. All three of the largest flooring manufacturers recognize Milfair as one of their premier dealers.
With Milfair Linoleum & Carpeting’s rich heritage of quality products, service and reputation, we will continue to be a vital part of the Guernsey County business community for many years to come.