Midas Touch

Ushering in a new Iron Age
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George Boyd Sr., George Boyd Jr., and Mary Grace Boyd. Photography by Audra Melton

 

Goldens’ Foundry and Machinery Company was established in 1882 and is now best known by the brand name Goldens’ Cast Iron. The apostrophe’s placement signifies the partnership of the two founders, brothers John Poitivent “Porter” Golden and Theodore Earnest “Theo” Golden. It’s still Columbus-based, now run by descendants of the original founders. Here’s how the company has pivoted in the last few years, and how it has stayed true to itself and its founders’ vision.

 Goldens’ Cast Iron was originally known for manufacturing parts and pieces for factories and freight, as well as items such as cane syrup kettles. It continues to manufacture assorted parts, such as bridge components, gear housings, and ship anchors. 

 Just prior to World War II, the company ventured into consumer products with a cast-iron mill for grinding sugar cane. In 2016, the family’s love of barbecue brought them back to consumer-focused products with the introduction of their kamado grill, a cast-iron cooker that acts as a grill, smoker, and wood-fired oven in one. Similar in style to other ceramic grills, the difference is the cast iron, which has superior radiant and thermal properties over ceramic. Goldens’ also makes stylish fire pits, reminiscent of its original syrup kettles.

 In 2020 the company began producing cast-iron kettlebells and dumbbells. Workout equipment was in high demand, and gyms faced pandemic-motivated closures. Since most gym equipment was made in China and shipping delays loomed large, the company dove into a new category. Goldens’ has since produced more than 50,000 dumbbells and 15,000 kettlebells and counting. The company has largely been unaffected by the global supply chain crisis, as most of its iron is locally sourced. 

 The fifth generation of the family now leads the company, and the sixth generation has just come on board. George Boyd Sr. is CEO; George Boyd Jr. is vice president; Ed Boyd oversees manufacturing operations; and 2019 college graduate Mary Grace Boyd has recently joined the marketing team. One hundred and forty years since its founding, Goldens’ is still headquartered in Columbus, with a factory in Cordele as well. 

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